What is financial advice?

Financial advice, financial planning, investment planning or wealth management? Whatever you call, it, at its heart, good financial advice is all about making the most of life – helping you to decide what you want to achieve and setting the financial strategies to help you do it.

Everyone has different goals in life, but for most of us, finances play an important role in reaching them. That’s where we can help. Your adviser will guide you by:

  • helping you identify your personal goals, such as an early retirement, travelling or building funds for your children’s education
  • developing strategies for saving, investing to meet your goals, and contingency plans to help protect you against life’s hazards along the way
  • help keeping you on track by regularly reviewing your direction and making adjustments as required.

How do I pay for financial advice?

Our preferred method of payment is a fee for service basis. Your adviser will explain, and agree with you, any fees and payment options before providing advice and services to you.

The cost of our advice and services may include charges for preparing and implementing our initial advice, and may also include charges for ongoing advice and services.

The actual costs will be shown in our written advice to you. You may choose to pay fees directly to RI Advice Group or, where possible, they may be deducted from your product.

You can find out more about how we get paid in our Financial Services and Credit Guide.

What should I expect when I first meet with an adviser?

You do the talking and the adviser does the listening. The whole idea is to find out how we can help you. The first meeting is all about finding out what’s important to you and where you’d like to go.

Your adviser will help you to identify what’s most important in your life so that they can start to plan to get you there. They’ll also explain what the process will be, how long it will take and what information will be needed so you can decide if you’d like to go ahead. All fees and charges are outlined up front, so if you do decide to go ahead you know how much it will cost.

What happens after the first meeting?

The next step is to develop a strategy to suit your particular situation and goals, which will be presented to you in a written Statement of Advice.

Your adviser will explain the Statement of Advice to you, and you can ask any questions you have and clarify the details. Once you’re comfortable to go ahead, you instruct your adviser to implement your strategy.

Once the strategy and plans are in place, your adviser can put a review period in place to keep an eye on the progress and adapt your plans for any changes in your circumstances.

Why should I pay for financial advice?

While many people can manage their day to day money issues, reaching your financial goals requires you to make a number of important decisions.

For starters, will you invest in shares or property, fixed interest or cash? Where should you invest – buy shares directly or through a managed fund? And should you put your money into Australian or international investments? The raft of questions can be quite daunting, and that’s only the start of it.

There’s also the matter of your superannuation, tax, and how to protect yourself against financial misfortune. Not to mention getting the most out of government benefits and estate planning.

These are all complex issues, which is precisely why many Australians see a financial adviser. They can apply their experience and expertise to help you make the tough decisions and integrate the different aspects of your finances into one plan.

Many people also enjoy the peace of mind that comes from having a plan in place – the feeling that their finances are being taken care of, and that they’re heading in the right direction.