How we work
As Independent Financial Advisers we advise on a wide range of financial topics. We use advanced computer software to research, compare and select the most suitable products that are currently available from the whole of the market, in order to maximize the benefits to our clients.
You’ll receive our help to review your current financial situation and reach a realistic assessment of your likely needs. For this, you’ll need to set aside some time to talk to us – the first consultation is usually free. There’s no charge and no obligation. From that initial exploratory meeting, we will advise you of how we may be able to assist you to achieve your objectives and what costs will be involved. (Please see “How we are paid” for full details).
Depending on your instructions we will carry out a full needs analysis based on your current status, taking into account any specific plans and/or targets you may have. We will then develop a strategy and present our report on anything from a short term financial objective to a lifetime financial plan, followed up with regular reviews.
In this manner, you will always have a personal consultant to call concerning your financial affairs and aspirations for the future.
You’ll also have our help to decide how much provision you need to make and the order of priority in dealing with your finances. And of course it will all be sensibly balanced in relation to your current income and affordability.
How we are paid
On receiving an enquiry we invite a prospective client to come to either our office for a preliminary meeting or we can arrange a visit at home or place of work. The purpose of the meeting is to provide personal involvement from the start, to establish whether we are able to assist with your needs and objectives and to discuss how we would be paid for our services if we were to proceed. There is no charge for this preliminary meeting and no obligation on either side.
Following the Retail Distribution Review (RDR), post 31st December 2012, providers are unable to pay commission. For many years, Berkeley La Roche has offered its clients the opportunity to pay for financial advice by means of an agreed one-off fee or based on an hourly rate – or a combination of both. The one-off fee would require you to make an up-front payment by cash or cheque once the policy has been agreed. The alternative is for the cost of the advice and work to be met through a payment directly from your plan or fund via the product provider (or an agreed combination of both). After the initial consultation, we will agree how you wish to proceed. No charges for fees will be made without prior notification in writing.
For Term Assurance, Life and Mortgage Protection, at present, life companies are happy to make an indemnity payment to this firm, for the successful placing of business. This payment is included within the provider’s normal product charges. The amount of payment is based on a percentage of the premiums payable over a set period of time – usually 36 or 48 months.
If you wish to offset any payment we receive from a provider, this will be taken into account in working out our relevant fees.