Since 2015, people over 55 has been given access to greater freedoms in how they can access and use the money accrued in their pension pots. However, with it comes a greater responsibility for making the best decision for financing their retirement.
If you’re in a saving scheme that provides you with a sum of money – or a pension pot – you need to make that decision carefully. With so many options available now, that decision isn’t as simple as you might think, and it may not be one you’ll want to take on your own. Questions about whether you can afford to retire, how much your state pension will be or whether to merge multiple pension pots aren’t easy to answer without the help of an adviser.
Start with Free Advice
Before deciding on a financial adviser, it’s a good idea to get a better understanding of the situation. Pension Wise is a government service that offers free impartial advice to help you understand the options available and the tax implications attached to them. The advice can be obtained either through their website, on the phone or through a face-to-face consultation. Crucially, Pension Wise doesn’t recommend any one option over another, and nor does it recommend any specific company to use. As such, it’s a perfect starting point as you begin to weigh up the pros and cons.
Tailored Financial Advice
Financial advice specific to your own personal needs requires a professional financial adviser with the relevant qualifications specialising in retirement matters. Advisers in this field are called independent financial advisers (IFAs). As they’re independent, they have access to a much wider range of options to offer you than you may be able to find on your own.
Many advisers such as Henson Crisp provide retirement advice as part of a broader range of investment advice. Personalised financial advice has to be paid for, but the upside to this is that a good adviser will help you avoid making inappropriate decisions which could turn out to be financially devastating and life-changing.
Since your adviser adheres to tight regulations ensuring transparency with regards to costs and fees, you’ll know up front what you’re paying for, which may not be the case if you invest in a financial product directly from a provider. But more importantly, a financial adviser will help you put together all the information needed about you for them to deliver advice that works the best for your personal situation. They are bound by regulations to ensure that any recommendation they make is suitable for you – in fact, you are legally protected and you can complain if something goes wrong.
Paying for an IFA to help you make your retirement decisions and handle your retirement finances may seem costly, but it’s a good idea to put it into perspective. If the advice they give solves a difficult problem and positively affects your income for the next few decades, then you can consider their fees a good investment.