What is being brought to light by the Banking Royal Commission is disturbing, but for us in the industry it’s not surprising that some of the big institutions have not always acted in their clients’ best interest. Nearly 3 years ago, we made the move to obtain our own financial planning licence, so we are not tied in any way to a big institution. Even though the expense in obtaining and maintaining our licence is high, at least we are controlled by our own Board and can provide the services that clients need and want, with full disclosure of fees.
There are two things that really worry us about the consequences of the Royal Commission. Firstly, the bad behaviour of a few could seriously affect the next generation as they avoid the industry all together and don’t seek out quality financial advice. Secondly, the addition of another level of red tape that will add to the administrative burden and make the service more expensive. The result will be that another group will be excluded from seeking financial planning services because they simply cannot afford it.
The regulator should deal with the perpetrators in a manner that would act as a deterrent. This would allow the rest of the industry to move forward and talk about the good things that financial planning does for client outcomes. We have a lot of great stories and we have clients referring their family members and friends to our service. It’s a great service that is important to the financial security of our clients and shows how a good adviser can make a real difference.
The element of the financial planning industry (sadly quite significant) which is focused on bonuses for selling products and not on great client outcomes is a blight on our industry which is incredibly rewarding when done professionally and ethically.
If you would like to find out more about TAG:
Leigh Jobling, Partner, Investment Advisory and Wealth