Future Plan

We have just reviewed an excellent research report called “The future’s built on great advice” that was commissioned by Standard Life in which the views of over 1,000 Irish adults were sought. This research focused on the actual difference that a Financial Broker has on your financial health. We want to bring your attention to three main findings in the report, that highlight the better outcomes achieved by people who have taken financial advice.

1. They have higher value pensions

People who have taken financial advice have higher value pensions. When asked about the value of their pensions, people who had taken advice have saved on average just over €120,000 towards their retirement, compared to €61,000 saved on average by people who have muddled along alone. Also people who have taken advice are almost twice as likely to be saving for their retirement as those who haven’t.

This is no great surprise to us to be honest, but a really positive endorsement of the value of working with your Financial Broker on your retirement planning. We take a very structured approach to your retirement plan and will help you stay committed to continued saving over a long period of time. We see time and time again that significant pension funds are amassed by clients who are consistent, committed savers. We then help you to invest your pension fund wisely.

2. They have more saved on deposit

People who have taken financial advice also have more money in the bank. Financial Brokers place a lot of importance on protecting our clients from everything that life can throw at them. While this is often in the form of financial protection products such as life assurance and income protection, we also place a lot of store on our clients having access to a war chest of accessible money, in case some unexpected event occurs. This might be the loss of income of a main breadwinner or a significant and important expense that is needed.

In this research, savers who have not taken advice have on average €26,700 on deposit, accessible at short notice. However those who work with a Financial Broker have more than double that amount saved on deposit – on average they have saved €57,600. These people are very well insulated against and prepared for any financial shocks that might come in their direction.

We also make sure you pay yourself first! When clients come to us for the first time, we often see poor financial habits such as paying themselves last. They save only what is “left over” at the end of each month. This often results in no money being saved, as we are all (us included!) very good at finding ways to spend any surplus cash. We encourage clients to set up savings that come out of your current account immediately after payday and not just before it when there is no money left.

3. They have more money invested

People who have taken financial advice have greater wealth and more valuable investment assets. Investing as opposed to saving enables you to build wealth over the medium to long term by getting

 your money working hard for you. The difference was very significant here in the research – clients who take advice have almost three times as much money invested as those who don’t take advice.

How does this happen? We think there are a few factors. First of all, Financial Brokers have deep knowledge of the range of investment opportunities available to you. They will enable you to find the one that best matches your needs and your own appetite to take risk.

Secondly, we work with you after year, helping you to stay on track and ensuring that your investment delivers as required. If not, we take corrective action. This all adds up to better outcomes for you.

Finally we also help you manage your financial behaviours in relation to your investments. Time after time we see investors making mistakes that we can help you avoid. We see investors entering stock markets right at the top of the market and also getting out of the market immediately after a big drop. These can be very expensive mistakes that we can guide you to avoid.

By the way, these advised investors are also enjoying short term benefits too as a result of their wise decision to work with a Financial Broker. The research also found that they are more likely to be actually drawing an income from their investments, as opposed to enjoying all of the benefits only in the future.

This research confirms the importance of good advice in relation to your finances. Your Financial Broker can seriously improve your financial health.

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