Support For Non-Intermediating Financial Planners And Their Firms
We see financial planning in transition. In the past, there is the Financial Intermediary. Moving forward, there is the 'Non-intermediating' Financial Planner. We specialise in supporting
Non-Intermediating Financial Planners.
We take a real interest in your business, where you will feel part of a team. We help Non-Intermediating Financial Planners to grow their businesses compliantly, professionally and profitably. We
instil confidence in your business.
We offer the Non-Intermediating Financial Planner the job lot. Our range of services include the sharing of a license-free blueprint, compliance advice, marketing support, general guidance,
business documentation, processes, coaching, training, webinars, helpdesk support, events, and much more.
We Move With The Times, So You Can Too
The journey from a regulated financial adviser to a non-intermediating financial planner is often more challenging and time-consuming than people think. For those who successfully complete the
journey, the rewards for firm and clients are immense.
The Academy of Life Planning adviser support network will give you the blueprint, tools and practical help to shorten your journey as you transition to non-intermediating financial planner. We
believe we are the only network to support you in setting up and growing a successful non-intermediating financial planning firm.
We deliver online support and personalised solutions to a global network of online non-intermediating financial planners and their firms. With a focus on non-intermediating financial planning, our
members are typically small life and financial planning firms around the world, servicing a global village of clients online.
Our virtual support team are knowledgeable, friendly and there to help. They are extremely helpful in all areas and have the appropriate knowledge, experience or qualifications relevant to their
roles, and the areas on which they may be assisting our members.
How We Do It - We Communicate Regularly
If buying support works well for you, our specialised support is second to none. We keep up to date with current regulations. We provide impartial views and recommendations. We are very
approachable if ever you have any concerns. We deal with things efficiently and quickly.
Our services are provided under a modular approach; under fixed fee agreements by the hour, or by the month or for a task. We are there to work for you and have no interest in promoting additional
services that do not sit well with your business model.
Our core service brings together the best in online and over the phone support. This level of support is designed to:
- Provide an 'out-of-the-box' non-intermediating financial planning business model, because disruptor business models are completely different to what's already there.
- Provide you with a tried and tested planning process suitable for non-intermediating financial planning, with utmost professionalism and efficiency.
- Keep you informed of relevant issues – saving you time searching for and reading regulatory reports and surveys.
- Provide you with up to date guidance and specimen procedural documents – saving you time in creating documents from scratch.
- Provide you with someone to call for those difficult day to day issues – giving you reassurance that you are adopting the correct approach. You can always pick up the phone and speak to a
suitably qualified person at no extra cost.
- Provide you with a comprehensive development programme for you and your staff.
- We are particularly helpful with your step-by-step transition from financial intermediary to non-intermediating financial planner. Book your one-hour consultation to find out more.
expect that there will come a point in your career as a professional financial planner where you ditch the intermediation
The cost-value perspective.
When financial planning for
consumers, the greatest value added in the services you provide is in the provision of the financial plan itself, rather than adding value through financial
intermediation. Some might argue that financial intermediation may lead to better outcomes for consumers. It is
certainly more convenient to have someone make investment decisions for you. But at what cost?
Transition from product sellers to professional
Financial planning used to be
product advice. Financial planning of today is more than just products, and not only includes financial solutions that manage wealth, but includes strategies for making it in the first place. Such
as, a three-year business plan.
Good financial planning also
includes goals that money can’t buy such as respect, well-adjusted kids, work-life balance, life purpose, good friends, close-knit family, good health, peace of mind, happy memories, true love, a
happy home, good karma, time to relax, a good epitaph. The list goes on.
Traditionally a financial planner
was a salesperson for a product company or number of product companies. When financial planning today, nine times out of ten, the task is to improve life now. Which means, nine times out of ten, the
solution is not an investment product. The solution is a financial plan, including the three-year business plan of you.
Improving the short-term
financial situation for the client will automatically improve the long-term outlook.
And, with a little knowledge of
business planning - and adjusting the 'what if' scenarios in the cash flow forecast - we can ensure the client doesn't outlive their capital by creating recurring 'nocturnal' business
Since, the modern financial
planner is seldom required to recommend a long-term investment product to make good shortfalls, they might instead choose an easier and more profitable career down the non-intermediating
Conflicted payments and client best interest.
Another reason for no longer
being a financial intermediary, is that these days long-term investment returns have been commoditised and are as easy to access and maintain as on-line banking.
The product adviser cannot hope
to beat the return after charges of a passive multi-asset fund on a platform. According to
Which? 90% of financial intermediaries derive their fees from the product as a percentage of assets under advice. The savings available for the consumer in adviser charges over a lifetime can be many
Regulators around the world continue to challenge the conflicted payments of
asset-based fee advisers, presenting a regulatory risk which threatens recurring revenue streams supporting intermediary firms.
If you always wish to act in the best interest of your clients without conflict of
interest, then you might consider becoming a fee-for-service, or fiduciary, financial planner. That is, you are fee-only and there is no conflict of interest.
A non-intermediating financial planner is a fee-only, fiduciary, financial
planner. That is, they act as an agent of the client and do not hold any agency agreements whatsoever with any product providers. They are guaranteed by client contract to place client best interest
first, without conflicted payments.
Financial intermediaries are selling agents and find it difficult to sign up to
fiduciary codes because, in the absence of a wall between advice and product, they find it difficult to undertake to always act in the client's best interests.
Costs of regulation.
Financial planning itself is not a regulated
activity. It is classed as general or generic advice, where it is not delivered in preparation for a regulated activity. A financial intermediary may deliver financial planning in preparation for
financial intermediation, and in the UK is required to be registered and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). A non-intermediating financial planner is not.
When planners realise that the
greatest value is added by the non-regulated activity, they may begin to question the rationale for and cost of being regulated.
Life has been increasingly
difficult and unprofitable for the financial intermediary; because of increasing regulation, its associated cost, and a hardening of the professional indemnity insurance market; forcing the market to
contract as many regulated advisers quit.
Regulated activity adds considerably to the
time and cost of the financial planning process. It also makes it difficult to maintain client relationships remotely, with all the proof of identity, signing of documentation and agency agreements,
and trust measures required to handle client money. It is difficult to apply social distancing measures when you are regulated and seeking wet signatures.
Regulated activity does not necessarily lead
to better outcomes for clients.
Certain transactions can only be
undertaken by a regulated financial intermediary, such as a pension transfer from a Defined Benefit scheme. Non-regulated financial planners may therefore need to refer consumers to regulated
financial planners with the relevant permissions from time-to-time.
The advice gap and the underserved public.
It should be noted that today
ninety-five percent of the population are underserved by the financial intermediary population on account of their limited wealth.
Financial intermediaries often
operate with thresholds of investable assets held by consumers, below which they will not operate. A typical threshold might be £100,000. Due to the economies of infrastructure, non-intermediating
financial planners can profitably serve the underserved, at far lower thresholds and at prices the underserved can afford.
For more information.
A major part of the financial
planning process is planning the client before planning the money. To do this effectively the financial planner must also be an expert and experienced life planner. Financial planning is as much an
art as it is a science.
If you are considering becoming a
non-intermediating financial planner, or you are a financial intermediary wishing to learn the art of this style of financial planning, please contact us to discuss our development, mentorship,
training, and accreditation services.