What Benefits Can an Independent Financial Adviser Bring to the Equity Release Market?

By Mark Gregory on January 29th, 2013

 

Independent Financial AdviserAnybody who has had the time to research about equity release will know that it’s a relevantly straight forward product; however a mistake in choosing the correct one could prove extremely expensive for the applicants & even their beneficiaries. There are different schemes and options to understand that may create multiple misconceptions or answers that may not be in your best interest. Therefore, an Independent Equity Release Adviser may be your solution.

 

An Independent Equity Release adviser is a highly trained expert approved by the FSA (Financial Services Authority) to provide the highest quality of information that will allow retirees looking towards equity release, to gain vital information that will best help them in choosing their path to financial freedom in retirement. An equity release adviser is only a phone call away from answering all your necessary questions which should initially be free of charge. You can even check the FSA register to ensure the company they represent are officially registered.

 

However, if you’d like a more personal touch, a meeting could be arranged where you could meet face-to-face and in the comfort of your own home. This initial meeting would involve a discussion around your current situation and thereafter your financial requirements. Your adviser would then usually have sufficient information to conduct appropriate research from the whole of the equity release market. This would involve establishing your needs and finding the best equity release scheme; be it a lifetime mortgage or home reversion. Even then, once the right scheme is ascertained, the next stage would need to begin, which would be to find the individual type of lifetime mortgage or home reversion scheme that is best suited. Once found, then your equity release adviser can request the equity release quotes from the provider concerned. Upon receipt & at the next subsequent meeting they can then run through and explain their recommendations including quotes.
You may be asking – ‘other than a source of information, what else can an independent equity release adviser do for me?

 

This is where the real advantages begin. As they are of course independent they have a wide open market to choose from rather than say an Aviva or Prudential financial adviser helping you. This is due to the fact that Aviva or Prudential will obviously try to gently persuade you into choosing one of their products and schemes. This may not always be best advice, nor will you necessarily receive the best deal.
Furthermore, as equity release companies want your business and due to the fact that the cost of getting their products to market and selling them is cheaper via an independent adviser, then they can pass on these savings in the deals they offer with them. These savings arise because they do not have to pay directly only for the independents services. With an Aviva adviser, Aviva have a basic salary of approx £30,000pa to pay, plus bonuses, company car, pension scheme, mobile phone, life assurance etc. This is all reflected in the pricing of their products. Whether it’s their Flexible Drawdown plan, Lump Sum Max release or Enhanced Equity Release plan the interest rates & offers are generally less competitive direct with Aviva.

 

This is therefore the reason why buying the same, they can usually provide independent equity release advisers ‘special’ interest rates and deals such as free valuations & cashbacks to the client to help choose their product. So with multiple providers offering exclusive rates to IFA’s it then creates a much more competitive market which proves why you should always shop around to find yourself the best deal that suits your needs. After all, this decision will potentially affect you for the rest of your life.

 

This all sounds very promising but are there any costs involved in using an Independent Equity Release Adviser? Initially there should be no costs. All meetings, information and quotes are typically free with no obligation which is great. Nevertheless, if you choose to advance with a product selected through an intermediary then there is a fee of around £795 upon completion. This may seem a little daunting but if you consider that you have just chosen an exclusive rate that is only accessible through your independent adviser, that will save you thousands of pounds by finding you the best rate then this fee instantly becomes a very small drawback.

 

To find an Independent Equity Release Adviser locally to you, please click here, or alternatively call 0800 678 5169 to arrange a convenient appointment.

 

Follow Compare Equity Release’s author Mark Gregory on LinkedIn.

 

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