7 Golden Rules to financial planning

  1. If you are looking for an Advisor then ask your family and friends or read testimonials for a recommendation – It is always best to embark on what should be a lifetime journey with an Advisor who someone else can provide you with positive feedback on.

  2. Ask the Advisor about their skill sets and qualifications – seeing a specialist for your specific requirement is always better than meeting with someone who ‘generally’ provides financial advice. Think of this in terms of the medical profession in that a heart surgeon will be more skilled at heart surgery than perhaps your local GP.

  3. Ask how you are protected – Is the advice that your advisor gives protected by way of the Financial Services compensation scheme, if so to what extent? and is the advisor authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority.

  4. Talk Risk – we live in challenging times where the economy of the world can change rapidly. How is your capital invested? it is good to know your capital is working hard for you during the good times but how will you be protected during the down times?

  5. Talk Fees – From January 2013 Advisors will charge their clients fees and will no longer be paid commissions. The Advisor needs to be explicit with you and be clear regarding fees so before you proceed with any action you must have a clear understating of how you will be charged.

  6. Talk Review – Ok so once your plan is set in force then how and when will it be reviewed – even the best plans will need adjustment and sometimes change. When will you next see your advisor and how often will you meet?

  7. Take good quality, professional, qualified Advice and never proceed with any financial plan until you have done so!