I’ve seen an advert two or three times this weekend, for Norwich Union and its investment plans. At the end it says if you need help contact our Financial Advisers for more information. Have you spotted the missing word?
Of course the missing word is Independent. Go to Norwich Union looking for an investment, and its Financial Advisers are only allowed to look at Norwich Union’s own plans. They can’t compare other product providers’ policies, they can’t look across the entire market. Now to be 100% fair to Norwich Union, it does offer the option of sending you through to find an IFA, but the ad and thrust is towards a Financial Adviser.
Some of you may be surprised to read me trumpeting on about this, after all historically I’m no great fan of IFAs (Independent Financial Advisers), though to confuse things I will leave my reasons behind that for another time. However let’s make no bones about it, I would desperately prefer anybody to go to an IFA rather than a simple FA. If ever you are getting advice about financial products from a ‘Financial Adviser’ if they’re not INDEPENDENT, don’t do it, walk away.
When it comes to investment planning, if you don’t know what you’re doing, and you really feel you need help (doing it yourself without help, providing you can do the research, is much cheaper as you don’t have to pay commission or fees for advice; see Savings and Investment section) then an IFA is a better way to go. If you want to find an IFA then use www.unbiased.co.uk to locate those based in your local area.