Advice not just for the wealthy


By Wouter Klijn

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Financial advice was not just for the wealthy, but helped anyone who wanted to take control of their financial future, the FPA said yesterday.

The association kicked off its 15th annual Financial Planning Week yesterday and reminded people of research by Investment Trends that found people were happier when they felt they had control over their finances.

“Too many Australians still believe that financial planners are only for the wealthy, yet nothing could be further from the truth,” FPA chief executive Mark Rantall said.

“We know from the Investment Trends research that regardless of how much money people have, they feel happier and more in control of their financial future if they take the simple step of consulting a financial planner.”

Rantall based his statements on the Investment Trends “2014 Advice and Limited Advice Report”, which was released in March.

He said Financial Planning Week aimed to increase all Australians’ understanding of financial advice and the benefits it could bring.

“Eight-and-a-half million Australian adults have unmet advice needs and 34 per cent of Australians are concerned they won’t have enough money to retire on,” he said.

“The role of financial planners is to find out their clients’ pain points and to help alleviate that stress.

“Financial pressure is a major source of stress for many Australians and depending on your life stage, the trigger for this stress will be different.

“Recent Investment Trends research shows that inflation, rising prices and having sufficient money to retire on are ranked among the biggest concerns.”

Financial Planning Week will look at the different life stages, from young to mid-life, pre-retirement and retirement and show how tailored, professional advice can improve financial outcomes at each and every stage.

This year’s program will include the popular “Ask an FPA Expert” free online forum, which gives consumers the opportunity to ask their burning financial questions and have them answered by an FPA expert.

FPA members have volunteered their time to answer questions via the forum.

“We are determined to ensure that Australians who seek financial advice have access to trusted, qualified financial planners who always have their best interest at heart,” he said.

“The number of clients actively using a planner in Australia rose to 2.5 million last year, up 100,000 on the previous year, which is clear evidence that the value of quality financial advice is being recognised.

“We encourage all financial planners to use Financial Planning Week as an opportunity to spread the good word about the positive impact of their work on their local community and more broadly.”

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