It’s been four months since the Budget and the aftershocks of George’s pension bombshell are still being fealt.
One by one, the policy decisions which will shape the way advice and guidance will be delivered, are falling into place. Those approaching retirement from April 2015 will be walking on a different moon. The constellation of retirement choices may reconfigure again if the Mansion on the Hill (CDC) gives ordinary people access to its many rooms.
With that splendid mixed metaphor digested, you might like to disagree with my top ten tips for advisers facing up to the challenge that lies ahead (I never find it much fun agreeing on everything!).
- Embrace the Guidance Guarantee. This is going to happen and you are either swimming with the tide or out at sea. MAS are looking to put together an at retirement advisor directory, make sure you are on it.
- Embrace technology; Skype is a way forward and there are many other ways to deliver advice more efficiently than jumping in your car,
- Monitor your meetings, look out for new compliance monitoring tools which can increase the efficiency of your advice, reduce the risks of you getting things wrong and provide your clients with a lasting record. Alexander House’s Nick Kelly is good on this
- Understand the new regulations and how they allow differentiated approaches that help different types of client. The HMRC guidance on the new flexibilities is here
- Think payroll. The new means of drawdown are all PAYE, you need to have a strong payroll offering that can do the tax-work as well as disinvest and deliver accurately.
- Think about the trade-offs. Risk reduction comes at a price, the key differentiators between the various at retirement options are risk/flexibility and price. If the cost of a low risk, ultra flexible approach to retirement funding is an inadequate income, might the cost be too high
- Collaborate; to see us competing and slagging each other off is not edifying. People like Alan Higham got rich working with people like Martin Lewis. Advisory practices can work with pension consultancies, journalists, broadcasters and other mavens who have public support- Ros Altmann for one!
- Get out more! Spend less time bitching on social media and more time promoting yourselves- there are 1.2m employers still to stage auto-enrolment, I don’t want them as clients but you might! Use http://www.pensionplaype n.com as your tool to build a retirement practice.
- Charge with confidence! The biggest difference between actuarial practices and IFA practices is confidence. Having worked in both, I see no reason why have FIA after your name should make it easier than having IFA after your name. It’s all in the mind!
- Congratulate yourselves. If you are in business today, it is because you rose to the challenge of the RDR. Thousands didn’t and envy you your application.
IMO, the new flexibilities introduced by George Osborne made retirement advice relevant to the mass market.
You are and will be talking to ordinary people about extraordinary amounts of money. £30,000 may be too low to replace a living wage, but it’s £30k more than most of us have had to spend at one time before.
Just look at the amazement on people’s faces when they win this amount at a game-show. How people use their retirement savings and organise themselves around the single state pension is critical. It’s a matter of planning and you are the experts.
Over the next twelve months , my firm First Actuarial and my website http://www.pensionplaypen.com will get more referred business from IFAs than from any other sector of the financial services industry. We hope to put a lot of advisory work out to tender or simply in the hands of those advisers who we know and trust.
If you agree (or don’t disagree too much) with the 10 points outlined above, why don’t you contact me or one of my friends.
We’d all be pleased to meet, share business plans and work out how we can make 2015 and onwards better for our clients and for us!
Tip 11 is to pick on one of our names and set up a meeting!
henry.h.tapper@firstactuarial .co.uk- London
email@example.com – Basingstoke
Keith.firstname.lastname@example.org – Basingstoke
James.Smith@firstactuarial.co.uk – Tonbridge
Chris.email@example.com – Tonbridge
Mark.firstname.lastname@example.org – Leeds
David.Joy@firstactuarial.co.uk – Leeds
Michael.Vickerstaff@firstactuarial.co.uk – Leeds