Creating a professional financial planning strategy
We make sure we take the time to understand your needs, goals and preferences before we make any recommendations – this is the process we follow:
1. YOUR INITIAL CONTACT
We contact you to arrange a convenient time and place to meet.
We’ll require you to gather financial information in advance of our meeting. This will enable us to develop a clearer picture about your particular situation. To help us do this, we’ll need to see documents, including life assurance, mortgage, pension, savings, investments or bank statements. This is also an opportunity for you to outline the issues that you’d like to discuss.
2. YOUR REVIEW
We assess your current financial position and help identify your goals.
At your review, we provide information about our services and explain how we charge and the type of advice we offer. If there is anything you want to discuss, your review meeting is the perfect time to consider these other areas. We assess your assets and liabilities, discuss your objectives and priorities, and consider your attitude to risk.
3. PREPARING OUR RECOMMENDATIONS
Using the information we obtain from you, we develop a detailed financial plan.
We look at whether the financial plan will fit in with your lifetime goals and make sure you are comfortable with the timescale for implementing the plan. We research the market, review different products and providers, and follow up with the preparation of a document outlining a strategy tailored to your individual goals and circumstances.
4. DISCUSSING OUR RECOMMENDATIONS
We take you through our recommendations in detail.
We explain why we’ve chosen specific solutions and outline product features. Our goal is to ensure that you understand why we have recommended certain products or a particular advice strategy. We’ll also discuss the cost of any future work and explain how you can check on investment performance.
5. IMPLEMENTING YOUR PLAN
All the necessary product paperwork is completed and processed.
We make sure that all our recommendations to which you’ve agreed have been implemented. We’ll also liaise with your accountant or solicitor if appropriate.
6. REVIEWING YOUR PLAN
At this point, you’ll agree how often you want to review your plans.
The frequency and level of contact you have with us is up to you. It could be face-to-face meetings, over the phone or by email. If your circumstances change, we also need to know so that we can review what further changes your plan may require. These would typically cover life-changing events, including getting married, having a baby, a promotion or buying a new property – all events that may affect your finances and will require you to assess your financial planning strategy.
This process has to be underpinned by a joint commitment from both Merchant Financial Services and our clients in order to aim to ensure the successful completion of their financial goals.