Independent financial advice is needed by anyone wanting to ensure that their hard-won money works its hardest for them. There are good ways and there are not such good ways, there are efficient means and less efficient means of literally getting the best value for money - and independent financial advice will point you in the direction of the best routes and the best financial products available.
Britain has one of the most developed and advanced financial services industries in the world. This is great news for the consumer, of course, but it does mean that there is a positively bewildering array of different financial products on the market. Independent financial advice will help to make sure that you are choosing not only the best, but also the most suitable for your particular needs.
Savings and investment
If you want to make the most of your savings and investments, for example, would you know where to start? Could you pick your way through the maze of unit trusts, individual savings accounts (ISAs), Open-ended Investment Companies (OEICs), investment bonds, inshore or offshore investments, or ethical investments? Would you know where to go for reliable stock broking or comprehensive savings plans? The choices are almost overwhelming and this is the point at which you would want a well-informed, qualified and independently expert adviser to step in and advise you of the pros and cons of each.
One of the major areas of development and sophistication has been that of pensions planning. Once again, independent financial advice will be essential to ensuring that you make the most of your money for the longest possible time. Whether it is advice and guidance on personal pensions, annuities or finances on retirement, consultation with an expert will pay dividends.
Personal finances, protection and insurance
In today's uncertain economic climate most people want to make sure that every penny counts. Independent financial advice is essential to the best management of your personal finances and that of your family. In the field of personal and family insurance, for instance, there is already a huge range of products to choose from - and the choice is growing all the time. Whether your interest is in life insurance, critical or serious illness insurance, health insurance, or endowments, independent expert advice will be needed to ensure that you and thoroughly understand what you are buying, but that you have chosen the most appropriate cover for you and your family's needs.
Although sound, independent financial advice might have helped you to manage your debts in a sound and stable way in the past, if problems have begun to appear or debts seem to be getting out of control, then advice can also be given on debt consolidation or other debt management solutions.
A whole field of independent financial advice is also available to those looking for help in obtaining the right mortgage. Today's mortgage market, of course, is something of a minefield and expert advice is needed to tread a clear and confident path through the available offerings and choices between repayment, fixed interest, interest-only, endowment and pension mortgages (to name but a few).