The majority of our clients come to our offices in Fareham for a personal consultation. This may well involve two or more meetings but for many people the 'old fashioned' ways are still appropriate. The process will involve completion of a full Confidential Questionnaire, a copy of which can be obtained by dropping us an email. Still paper based unfortunately. These days however more can be done using technology, but we also have to be mindful of the requirements of our regulatory body - to ensure we give you best advice.
One of the concerns with the availability of on-line services is the scope they offer for professional advice. Try asking the "customer services representative" on a 'telephone direct' service for advice on whether YOU should invest in a FTSE tracker fund or a balanced portfolio of actively managed UK funds or what about Europe or America or the Far East or maybe a Global Specialist fund. For the cautious investor With Profits may be the right choice, yet some on-line sellers, and particularly the 'telephone directs', can't even offer this as an option.
True, some financial products are more price driven, for example term assurance, but can these on-line services really advise you how much life cover, or income protection YOU should have? Proper Financial Planning is about professional advice, would you take your car to a plumber for its annual service because it was cheaper, or call in your Bank Manager (if you can get past the call centre telephonist!) to repair the TV? Probably not.
So if you're happy to rely on a food and clothes retailer, or an airline with its own brand of cola for your financial future, great; if not you need genuine Independent Financial Advice from a specialist.
For some clients there may be a specific area of concern that you wish to deal with, but without the full rigours of a comprehensive financial review. You may be moving house and simply want us to arrange a new mortgage, or you may feel the need for some additional life cover. We can in some circumstances deal with this issue only for expedience. BUT, we would always recommend a full confidential review is carried out as soon as is reasonably possible.
We recognise that for some people, especially with access to the internet, there are occasions when you know exactly what you want, and who you want to provide it. So we can cater for this through our Execution Only Service. For the uninitiated this simply means you tell us exactly what you want and we can arrange it. There are still some rules we have to comply with, such as the Money Laundering Regulations. We can e-mail full details of how you can conduct Execution Only business.