The true value of advice

Renato Mota, General Manager, Distribution

Renato Mota

For many, the benefits of financial advice are measured by tangible gains, from tax saved to effective investment strategies. It’s a premise supported by IOOF’s 2014 White Paper, ‘The expectation of advice’ which found 76 per cent of clients said ‘achieving core goals and lifestyle objectives’ was the very definition of a successful financial planning relationship.

These benefits may be easy to demonstrate on paper, however the effects of good financial advice are far reaching and go well beyond this. That’s because when we succeed in providing ongoing financial advice, we don’t just influence financial decisions, we also influence client happiness, and it’s this underlying benefit which presents the true value of financial advice.

Now IOOF, in partnership with ‘effortless engagement’, has attempted to quantify these intangible benefits of financial advice.

The true value of advice

What did we uncover? Respondents suggested that with ongoing financial advice there was greater harmony at home (one 2012 study found arguments about money were the strongest pointer to divorce of all disagreement types1) and lower levels of stress associated with purchasing decisions.

One of the most compelling findings was that 22 per cent of people are more likely to feel they are living their ‘ideal life’ when they are backed by a successful financial plan and without the pressure or concerns surrounding money.

Our study also found that financial advice benefits extended beyond emotional happiness to your clients’ physical health. The results were telling, with around 1 in 5 people who don’t receive financial advice reporting anxiety or disrupted sleep due to money concerns.

Overall, ‘The true value of advice’ paper clearly demonstrates the role our industry has in delivering positive emotional benefits to a wide cross-section of society and by extension, the overall wellbeing of society.

Clients who receive ongoing financial planning advice experience:

  • 13% greater levels of overall personal happiness.
  • 21% overall increase in peace of mind.
  • 17% increased level in confidence that their core goals will be achieved.
  • 20% increased feeling of financial security.

Steps you can take to build your practice in 2016

Our research also found that family wellbeing was the top ranked priority, ahead of career, wealth and even personal health.

For advisers this translated to an overwhelming 83 per cent of clients who consider it important for family members and close personal relationships to receive professional, ongoing advice. This desire to see the best for family (and friends) opens many doors for referrals and fostering stronger relationships with the next generation of clients.

From tips on fostering intergenerational opportunities to embracing a referral culture, our paper also lays out a ‘blueprint’ for maximising the emotional benefits of financial advice for your practice.

To receive a copy of the IOOF White Paper ‘The true value of advice’ with the full results of our
financial planning survey plus great practice development strategies for 2016 contact your local IOOF BDM.

Conclusion

It’s widely accepted that good financial advice offers your clients a greater retirement lifestyle, improved personal security through effective insurance, better cash flow, the peace of mind of avoiding bad investments and greater discipline in sticking with good investments and budgets.

While these benefits alone should be enough to justify ongoing financial advice, it is the intangible benefits of emotional happiness that are another reason why clients and advisers should focus on the value, not the cost, of financial advice.

1 Dew, J., Britt, S. and Huston, S. (2012), Examining the Relationship between Financial Issues and Divorce


Important
The information contained in this newsletter is provided on behalf of the IOOF group of companies and is intended for financial adviser use only. It is given in good faith and has been prepared based on information that is believed to be accurate and reliable at the time of publication. Any examples are for illustration purposes only and are based on the continuance of present laws and our interpretation of them at the time.