Why choose a Chartered Financial Planner?
- Friday, April 19, 2019
People looking for professional financial advice on such important issues as Financial & Investment Advice, Retirement Planning or Estate Planning matters should seek an Independent Financial Adviser who has achieved Chartered Financial Planner status.
A Chartered Financial Planner is someone with considerable academic qualification and market knowledge that backs up their advice and guidance. The Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) consider a Chartered Financial Planner as the “gold standard of financial planning” for ethics and professionals.
A Chartered Financial Planner would have successfully passed through several CII Diploma’s and CII Advanced Diploma examinations in many areas such as Taxation, Trusts, Pension, Investment and Financial Planning. The status offered to a Chartered Financial Planner is recognised through the CII Chartered Financial Planner logo, seen on website and stationary and sets them apart from other advisers.
A Chartered Financial Planner will understand and analyse your financial position prior to recommending a researched and relevant solution for you to consider. All advice is confirmed through suitability of advice reports, which help you make better informed financial decisions. Chartered Advisers are often specialist and expert in certain areas. The true value of using a Chartered and Independent Financial Adviser comes in the confidence you get from the planning process, the understanding of the products you hold and improving financial security.
How to find a Chartered Financial Planner
You can find a Chartered Financial Adviser by searching on the following websites using your postcode, town or city and seek out the highest standard of financial planning.
Chartered Financial Planners Directory.
Use this directory to search for a particular firm, or to search for firms advising on particular types of financial products.
Chartered Financial Planners directory – http://www.cii.co.uk/web/app/charteredtitle/FSSearch.aspx
The Financial Services Register.
The Financial Services Register is a public record that shows details of firms, individuals and other bodies that are, or have been, regulated.
You can search the Register to find out whether a firm you are using, or plan to do business with, is authorised or registered by the FCA, or is exempt.
Financial Services Register – https://register.fca.org.uk/
Seven things to look for when choosing a Chartered Financial Planner:
Independent Financial Advice
A first step is to assure yourself that your adviser is classed as being independent. This means that they are not an agent for one or a small number of insurance companies but are an agent for you.
An Independent Financial Adviser can source financial products from the whole of market and therefore select the most appropriate solution for you. This is not the case when advisers are tied to the products of a single company.
An Independent Adviser will clearly state their status and use the well know white £ sign on a blue background on their website and stationary.
Chartered Financial Planner Accreditation
Chartered Financial Advisers are seen by the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) and Personal Finance Society (PFS) as the highest standard for financial planning practise. A Chartered Financial Planner would have successfully passed several CII Advanced Diplomas in many financial disciplines and it is the considerable academic qualification and resulting market knowledge that back up their advice and guidance. Chartered Financial Planners help you make better informed financial decisions.
A Chartered Financial Adviser will promote their status through the use of the CII Chartered Financial Planner logo on their website and stationary.
Financial Conduct Authority
All Financial Advisers have to be authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). You can check this by visiting the FCA at www.fca.org.uk and check the regulator of firms and individuals.
Network Member or Directly Authorised
Financial Advisers can either be authorised and regulated directly by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) or be part of a Network of IFA’s in which the network or host company is authorised and regulated. The network member is regulated by the network, not the FCA.
The larger the firm and the greater its resources usually means that it will more likely to be directly authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
Some Financial Advisory firms will conduct extensive investment selection research “in house” in order to be much closer to the investment portfolio selection decisions, whilst others will leave these decisions to third party investment providers.
Independent Financial Advisers can offer both in house researched investment solutions as well as third party solutions.
You may have a particular need for seeking financial advice and it is therefore important to ensure that your adviser has all the relevant qualifications, knowledge and experience to deal with your area of need. A good example of this is Defined Benefit Pension Transfer advice where only a limited number of Financial Advisers have the relevant CII qualifications. A Chartered Financial Adviser is most likely to have all areas covered by qualifications.
Sound Financial Standing
If you are seeking financial advice from a firm of Chartered Financial Advisers it would be reassuring to know that the firms finances themselves are in good order. There are a number of company record and credit websites that you can check a company’s financial well-being on. A good one is www.endole.co.uk but there are others.
Chris DaviesChartered Financial Adviser
Chris is a Chartered Independent Financial Adviser and leads the investment team.