For those potentially looking for a financial adviser, we have put together a series of articles covering the role of an IFA, what they do, how they work, and how they charge.

In the first part of this financial adviser FAQ series, we are answering the following question –What does a financial adviser do?

These articles are for those at the start of their search, who have unlikely worked with an IFA before.

This article covers:

  • Providing financial advice on a range of money matters
  • Tailored financial advice on pension and retirement planning
  • Providing expertise in areas such as Inheritance Tax & Estate Planning
  • Recommending personal and business protection policies
  • Supporting individuals during periods of change in their lives
  • Equity Release

IFAs are highly skilled, experienced financial professionals. They are adept at providing financial advice, tailored to an individual’s needs.

The rise of the internet has given people the opportunity to learn more about investments, pensions and more.

With the information available, people sometimes feel they can read a couple of articles and make informed decisions on their long-term finances.

In some cases, they can.

However, when it comes to complex tax strategies, mitigating IHT, choosing the right pension for your risk profile, protecting yourself against life’s uncertainties, and more, a financial adviser can help you avoid costly mistakes.

As our practice principal Ian Batterbee, often says:

“We help people to make expensive decisions. These decisions can be expensive…. if you get them wrong.”

Providing financial advice on a range of money matters

People have busy lives. Most people have an idea of the financial future they desire or the things in life they want.

But do they have the time, information, and expertise to make their dreams a reality?

Do they have the right information to select the best pension to meet their long-term plans?

A holiday home, sending their children to private school, managing old pensions, and planning for retirement, are just some of the things people look to plan for financially.

A financial adviser can provide specialist advice in areas covering:

  • Long term financial planning
  • Savings and investments
  • Pensions
  • Wealth management and planning
  • Personal cash flow forecasting
  • Tax planning
  • Inheritance Tax and Estate planning
  • Mortgages and Equity Release

An experienced, credible IFA will hold invaluable experience in all the above areas.

Tailored financial advice on pension and retirement planning

For many, retirement can be something that seems a million years away.

However, the earlier you start planning for your retirement, the less you leave to chance.

An experienced independent financial adviser can help to:

  • Understand a customer’s attitude to risk
  • Review any current pensions, and combine them into a scheme that reflects your retirement goals and attitude to risk
  • Provide advice on taking pension lump sums
  • Offer a steady hand, during periods of market volatility

Therefore, a financial adviser offers real value to individuals looking to realise their dream retirement and helps to avoid making any expensive mistakes.

Financial advisers provide specialist expertise in areas such as Inheritance Tax (IHT) & Estate Planning

One of the UK’s most famous Chancellors, Roy Jenkins offers this quote on IHT:

“Inheritance Tax is a voluntary levy paid by those who distrust their heirs more than they dislike the Inland Revenue”

It’s an interesting quote, and some find it amusing, and true!

As the quote suggests, IHT is largely voluntary.

By working with an experienced financial adviser, you could mitigate all or a large proportion of your IHT liability.

A robust well-formed estate plan helps individuals decide on what happens to their assets, investments, and more upon their death. This offers people peace of mind, and the certainty their financial legacy will be as they want it to be.

An IFA recommends personal and business protection policies where appropriate

In life, we never really know what is around the corner.

Long-term ill health or the death of a business partner can have seismic repercussions for an individual’s finances.

Helping individuals and business owners protect themselves from life’s uncertainties is one of the roles of a financial adviser.

IFAs can provide business owners, with advice on policies covering:

  • Key person cover
  • Shareholder protection
  • Relevant life policies
  • Loan protection
  • Business continuity
  • Personal and family protection

Financial advisers can offer advice to individuals and families in areas such as:

  • Mortgage protection
  • Income protection
  • Life insurance
  • Critical illness cover

Financial advisers help individuals during periods of change in their lives

As mentioned in the previous section, you never know what life can throw at you.

A business failure, a divorce, unexpected death, or a partner falling pregnant unexpectedly can result in the need for professional advice and support.

IFAs can support individuals through a range of life’s challenges.

They can work with people to readdress their finances, short-term goals and deploy strategies to help individuals navigate their way through these life events; good and bad.

IFAs can help you release equity from your home

What does a financial adviser for Equity Release do?

For those looking to cash in on the value of their home, whilst remaining in it, and retaining complete ownership, Equity Release offers the opportunity to do so.

One of the benefits of Equity Release is the funds can be used as you wish.

This could cover:

  • Holidays & travel
  • A financial gift to your children
  • That motorbike you’ve always wanted
  • Home improvements

Thinking about releasing equity from your home?

Find out more about our Equity Release advice service today

Looking to learn more?

Here are several articles we have published recently about working with a financial adviser.

A guide to choosing a financial adviser

Financial advisers: helping you reach your life goals

Signs you may need a financial adviser: part one

Looking to speak to a financial adviser?

For a no-obligation conversation with an experienced independent financial adviser, call us today on 01329 550190