Proud to be in the minority

April 25, 2014

A couple of articles caught our attention this month. The Mail Online and financial website This Is Money both reported on findings by the FCA (Financial Conduct Authority) that seven out of ten IFAs are still not being transparent about their fees.

This is despite the introduction in January last year of the Retail Distribution Review (RDR) which outlawed commission payments. From our point of view, the RDR makes perfect sense. How can an IFA be offering truly independent and unbiased advice if they’re being swayed by providers offering tantalising commission structures, which they can keep hidden from their customers? Despite this ruling, according to the FCA there are some major failings in the industry:

  • 73% of firms don’t properly explain up front the cost of advice
  • 31% fail to explain that they are not independent and only sell certain products
  • 34% do not explain ongoing charges or customers’ right to cancel.

You might be wondering then why we’d want to draw your attention to this scandalous behaviour. It’s because we’re pleased to report that we’re one of the three in ten that ARE being clear, transparent and consistent with our fees.

Independent financial advice the way it should be

We set up GreenSky Wealth so we could do things our way. We don’t set ourselves sales targets, because we believe that a target-driven environment breeds bad behaviour. We don’t ask our clients to invest in anything we wouldn’t invest in ourselves. And we certainly don’t hide dodgy commission payments away in our charges. We’re always clear and transparent about our fees so you can understand exactly how much you’re paying and what you’re paying for. And that’s the way we’ll stay.

With the ongoing need to make every penny count, alongside the changes to pensions and savings that the recent Budget introduced, getting good, independent advice is as important as ever. Just make sure you’re speaking to one of the 3 in 10 good ones.