Money

Good advice is always good value

Paul Clitheroe
Paul Clitheroe

The more you know about your money, the better off you are. But there are some things you don't need to know nor, unless you have a huge amount of spare time, will you be able to know.

It's like your health - when necessary you see a doctor because most of us don't have the skills to self-diagnose. With money matters you go to a financial adviser. But if you reckon finding a good doctor is challenging, finding a good financial adviser can be even harder.

The whole field of professional financial advice is reasonably new. Commissioned salespeople have been around for years, but it has only been in the last 20 years or so that qualified, professional advisers have started to appear in reasonable numbers. Unfortunately, some not-so-reputable advisers are still in business.

New legislation that cracks down on unscrupulous financial advisers was recently passed in parliament. These 'Future of Financial Advice' reforms will go a long way to improving the financial advice industry.

In essence, the changes are pitched at ensuring advisers put their clients' interests ahead of their own. Advisers will also need to make it quite clear how much their services will cost, and how you will be asked to pay, and you should be able to get simple, low cost advice if that's all you need.

These are worthwhile reforms because in today's increasingly complex world, good financial advice can make a tremendous difference to your wealth. Although stories of dodgy advisers tend to make the headlines, there are plenty of decent financial advisers who make a significant difference to their client's financial wellbeing, security and lifestyle.

A quality financial adviser can help you develop a realistic personal budget, draft a plan to get out of, and stay out of, debt, and steadily build a portfolio of investments that will help you achieve your long term goals. It can be especially helpful for those times when major decisions need to be made - for instance, when you're approaching retirement, if you've just gone through a separation or divorce, or if you've been made redundant.

Most importantly, good advice is tailored to what matters most to you. That's why any adviser you speak with you should first and foremost be interested in you and what you want from life rather than focusing on how much money you have to invest.

Finding a reputable adviser does require a bit of work. Ideally it will be a long term relationship, so be prepared to spend some time speaking with several firms before you settle on an adviser you feel comfortable with, and who has experience with situations similar to your own.

You could contact the Financial Planning Association (www.fpa.asn.au) for a list of qualified advisers near you, and I'd also be talking to friends and colleagues for recommendations.

Before meeting with an adviser it is worth having a few ideas of your own about investing - after all, the person who cares most about your money is you. A useful starting point for some background information is my free e-Book 'Ten keys to successful investing', which you can download from www.paulsmoney.com.au. The website also features a section devoted to choosing an adviser.

Paul Clitheroe is a founding director of financial planning firm ipac, chairman of the Australian Government Financial Literacy Board and chief commentator for Money magazine. Visit www.paulsmoney.com.au for more information.
 

Topics:  financial advice financial planning association paul clitheroe



Temperatures to plummet to single digits this week

Temperatures will drop into the single digits this week.

Forecasters reveal what to expect in the last week of autumn

Patients inside as ambulance hit on highway

Queensland Ambulance Service transported a 60-year-old man from Septimus

Three paramedics among the injured

James Hardie boss devastated by work death

Emergency Services, Ambulance, QAS, Photo Bev Lacey / The Chronicle

A MAN in his 60s has died in an industrial accident.

Local Partners

Six things you never knew about Men in Black

IT’S been 20 years since Men in Black first hit cinemas. Makes you feel old, doesn’t it?

10 strange stories behind famous sex scenes

Khaleesi and Khal Drogo in a steamy moment.

Every set has their own way of filming sex scenes

HBO spills new details on Game of Thrones’ final season

Game of Thrones’ eighth and final season will only have six episodes.

New details about what to expect from the eighth, final instalment.

Karl’s rant on Corby: ‘Made to look like idiots’

Karl Stefanovic is sick of hearing about Schapelle Corby.

Today co-host launched a tirade against Schapelle Corby media circus

Big Pineapple festival safety concerns as 100s walk home

LONG WALK HOME: Many festival goers opted to take a dangerous walk home due to transport difficulty following the Big Pineapple Festival in Woombye on Saturday.

Big Pineapple festival-goers have braved dangerous walks home

Shot at the live shows slips through Sally's fingers

Sally Skelton and Bojesse Pigram pictured after their battle performance on The Voice.

Sunshine Coast singer's dramatic elimination from The Voice

Gympie's Caitlyn Shadbolt releases debut album in concert

Caitlyn Shadbolt has launched her debut album in a concert at the Gympie Civic Centre on Sunday afternoon.

Caitlyn Shadbolt releases debut album in Gympie concert

Home to a sex worker: Sordid history of iconic Coast shed

Milojevic Djordjevic's daughter Linda at the derelict shed on Yandina-Coolum Road.

The shed was once a liveable 'barrack'.

This is real estate's billion-dollar man

Bob Wolff at AREC with John McGrath of McGrath Real Estate.

They don’t call him the “Billion dollar man” for nothing

Man's amazing comeback from monster crisis

Pat O'Driscoll agents Penny Keating and Doug Webber sold 56 Agnes St, The Range at auction over the weekend.

NOT long ago, he sold his possessions to pay staff. Now he's back.

Report reveals progress on $319m airport upgrade

Aerials of the Sunshine Coast.Jetstar plane in front of the Susnhine Coast terminal, Sunshine Coast Airport.

Over two dozen government approvals needed for airport expansion

Lost dough leaves sour taste after company collapse

Kathleen and John Mahoney from Sugar and Spice Bakery were stung after the collapse of Cantro Pty Ltd and are still owed money.

Supermarket operator collapse leaves sour taste for bakery

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!