The way I see it, the job of a financial adviser is to help people cut through the noise.
The weird thing is, that with over 18,500 advisers in Australia all doing things a bit differently, often figuring out who might be the right people to help you can in itself be overwhelming.
I wanted to put together this note to help you understand how to make the best choice for you, whether you end up choosing to work with Pivot or not.
The top three questions you should be asking your potential adviser is:
- How experienced are you helping people in a similar financial position to me?
- What are the sort of financial results I can expect from your advice?
- How do you charge, and do you get paid any conflicted payments or kickbacks that can influence the advice you might give me?
The first question will help give you confidence this adviser is an expert in solving the challenges you’re facing/opportunities you have available to you.
The second is designed to show you how ‘results focused’ your adviser is. It’s common for advisers to get super excited about building your financial plan, but what’s sometimes lost is the fact that your plan is only a way to get you the outcomes you want – the extra dollars in your savings account, growth on your investments and wealth, or progress ditching your mortgage.
While it’s impossible to know specifically what financial results you’ll get from putting a good financial plan into place before you actually put it together, a good adviser should be able to show you how they measure the true impact of their advice – giving you some insight into what this is likely to look like for you.
The question about how they charge will confirm two things, whether they’re going to charge enough to actually deliver the results you want, and secondly whether there are any conflicts that have the potential to influence your advice.
There’s no one right way here, but it’s important you understand the difference and how it can impact your advice. At Pivot we believe a ‘fee for service’ model is the most transparent way to charge, meaning we’re paid a fixed dollar fee for the services we offer.
We don’t get paid any more whether you buy shares, buy property, crank your super, or choose to just save money in a bank account. The reason we do this is to give our clients confidence that we’re only motivated by making sure they’re really happy with the advice we give them so they choose to keep working with us for a long time and tell all of their friends.
With a fee for service model, the fees can seem like they’re higher than what you’d expect, but with other models you often end up paying more, it’s just that the fees are hidden baked into products or coming through other channels. This will often cost you more in the long run.
You should also keep in mind that the actual cost of good financial advice should include the service charges AND the amount of money you make from the advice. At Pivot we’re big on measuring everything we can, and the numbers tell us that over the last year our clients were actually ahead after paying our advice fees by $71,203 p.a. [read the full detail here].
But don’t just take our word for it, Pivot’s advice and it’s impact has been nationally recognised as Best Client Servicing Advice Company and Adviser, Innovator of the Year, for Excellence in Education, Financial Wellbeing Program of the year, Advice Practice of the Year, and some others shown below. The demand for Pivot’s results driven advice has lead to us being listed amongst the AFR Fast 100 fastest growing companies in Australia. I’m personally pretty proud of this recognition, and I outline it here not just to bang on about how we’re awesome, but to highlight the fact that you’re not just thinking about working with an average advice firm – we’re talking about getting you the highest standard of financial advice to drive the best possible outcomes for you in the shortest amount of time.
If results are important to you, the next step is to book in one of our 45 minute Money Breakthrough sessions here. In the session we can unpack more on how we can help you make smarter money choices and get more out of what you have today.
PS: if you want to hear more about the impact of our work, you can listen to our clients talk about it in their own words here, or check out our 60+ five star Google reviews here.