Professional Investment Advice from Redwood Financial
While the advice isn’t free and DIY options are available, you should always take qualified, professional advice about the right Investment for you, before investing your money in the stock market or Investment funds!
Our expertise in Investment Advice will provide you with professional recommendations and guidance designed to help you make an informed decision about what is the best particular investment product or series of products to meet your goals and needs.
And because we are not tied to any particular investment provider or institution, we can help you find the very best investment funds, that are right for you and the level of risk you are comfortable taking with your Investments.
What does an Investment Advisor do?
Our Investment Advisors are Certified Financial Planners who are qualified to provide investment advice and can recommend a wide range of retail investment products that could meet your Financial Planning needs and objectives.
Our qualified Investment Advisors are able to advise on products that are not available from the traditional high street banks and building societies, which means we can help long term investors invest into the stock market to maximise their growth opportunities from their investments, whilst also advising you on how to improve the taxation and charges in your Investment Portfolio.
We do this by firstly understanding and establishing your investment goals.
- What are you building your wealth for? When do you need to achieve this goal by?
- What level of growth do you need or are looking to target?
- Do you need capital growth, income, or both?
- Do you need access to capital and if so, how quickly?
- How much risk are you prepared to take to reach your goal?
Only once we have established a clear investment objective and goal with you, can our Investment Advisors start to analyse your existing investments and create an Investment Recommendation Plan designed to meet your goals, whilst reducing your costs and charges, improving the tax efficiency of your investment and deliver your targeted returns in line with your attitude to risk.
Do I need an Investment Advisor?
We would always recommend that you take professional advice before you decide to invest your money. If you are looking at any financial products, which are not simply held in cash, it pays to get professional, qualified advice from an Investment Specialist. This fully advised route also gives you the most consumer protection, should anything with your Investment go wrong.
Our Investment Advisors will guide you through the options and explain the risks and benefits of different investment products and opportunities. They will even tell you about ones you never knew existed!
Most people do not want to gamble with their life savings on stocks and shares in a market they may know little about. Long term investments should be about growing your money to get the best return at the lowest risk. A good Advisor will provide you with professional, unbiased financial advice to help you get the returns you need to achieve your financial goals.
What constitutes Investment Advice?
Simply put, Advice is making recommendations of what you should do. For example, a recommendation to buy or sell a particular Investment.
- The recommendation is personal to you
- It will be based on your specific circumstances and your financial objectives and attitude to risk
- We are authorised and regulated by The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to provide this kind of advice
You can check which firms are regulated by the FCA on the Financial Services Register. These firms must meet the FCAs strict consumer protection rules.
You can find out more about what constitutes Advice versus Guidance on the Financial Conduct Authority website.
How do I choose the right Investment Advice Firm?
There are many considerations to undertake before embarking on a relationship with an investment or financial advice firm. The starting point should be to do your research!
Referrals from friends and relations are often a great starting point, as they may already be working with an Investment or Financial Planner that they have known and trusted for many years.
Check Trading Standards
You can also check the Trading Standards operated Buy With Confidence scheme, which will have details of Investment Advice Firms and Financial Planners they have accredited as a business that has proven they are someone you can trust. At Redwood, we are pleased to have passed this accreditation process with Trading Standards.
Check out a potential adviser’s website: is it professional? What do the Client reviews look like? Do they have a social media presence, and if so, is it up to date, relevant and how are they responding to any feedback received?
Ask to speak to them and see if they offer free Webinars, Seminars, or complimentary Q&As. You will soon get a feel if it is a business that is a great fit with your values and way of working.
At Redwood, we are proud to hold regular Public Education Seminars across Hampshire, which give you a free two-hour presentation from our Advisers on case studies which are relevant to our Clients. These Seminars are a fantastic introduction to our business, the services we provide and how we can help you to grow, protect and enjoy your wealth.
How much should you pay an Investment Advisor?
Financial Advisor fees vary depending on what they are charging you for and how you pay. Some charge an hourly rate that may vary from £75 an hour to £350, although the UK average rate is about £150 an hour.
Others may charge a set fee for a piece of work – this could be several hundred or even thousands of pounds, while others may charge a monthly fee – this could be a flat fee or a percentage of the money you want to invest.
There is also ongoing fees – an Advisor can only charge you an ongoing fee in return for providing an ongoing service, unless you’re paying off an initial charge over time through a regular payment product.
At Redwood, we hate hourly rates and commissions. We passionately believe that you should know exactly what you are going to spend for a service, and that you should have a complete breakdown of those costs before you ever spend a penny and authorise the work to be done.
All our meetings, recommendation reports and Investment advice is charged on a fixed fee basis. At each step of the process, we will work out what is needed to achieve your planning needs before we do the work, so you will know to the last penny the costs you will pay, before you make a decision.
What is the difference between an Investment Manager and an Investment Advisor?
The main difference is in the responsibilities of each role. The primary responsibility of the Advisor is to assess a Clients goal and advise them on which products and investment strategy should be used to minimise their tax and charges, whilst maximising growth within their risk tolerance.
Our Investment Advisors cannot hold their Clients money directly and they are not targeted or remunerated to reach certain returns for a Client on their Investment, ensuring they are not driven to guide their Client’s to higher-risk opportunities, but instead to a well-balanced risk vs. return Investment Portfolio.
Once the goal, risk and strategy are agreed with the Client and Adviser, an Investment Manager/Provider is entrusted with the responsibility to use a Client’s money in the best interests of the Client. They will select the shares and funds to buy within the Clients portfolio which they believe best meets the Clients goal, risk and strategy to increase the value of the money that the Client has invested.
Can I talk to a Financial Advisor for free?
They say there is no such thing as a free lunch, and yet it is a tradition in our profession to always offer a free Initial Meeting.
When someone offers you a free Initial Meeting, that Advisor only has one way of making that meeting profitable – they must now sell to you. Your Initial Meeting becomes a sales pitch, with an Advisor trying to sell their services and products on to you.
At Redwood, we always like to be innovative and question the best way to do things for our Clients.
Therefore, from 1st July 2019 we took the important decision to no longer offer free Initial Meetings and instead charge a fixed fee of £90 including VAT (correct as of Aug 2020).
As an award-winning and professional firm, our Initial Meetings are about providing you with bespoke advice, allowing us to review your existing planning, finding out what is actually important to you and giving you professional advice, even if that means telling you, you don’t need our help!
How does working with us benefit you?
The Redwood Financial Guarantee
At Redwood we pride ourselves on delivering an amazing Client service and as a small family business, our reputation is everything. This means at the end of your Initial Meeting if you do not feel it was worth the meeting fee then you simply won’t pay it. No questions asked!
So, if you want to know more about Redwood, before booking your Initial Meeting, please visit our Events Page and book onto one of our free Public Information Events.
How do I begin investing in stocks?
The decision to invest should not be taken lightly, but if done well it could help you achieve much better returns than even the best savings accounts, especially in today’s market.
Our Adviser will take you through everything you need to consider when investing in shares. This will include:
- Understanding what you want to achieve: generate a regular income, or build your capital over time
- How long do you have to invest? Putting your money into shares, whether that is through direct investment in the stock market or through pooled funds such as unit or investment trusts, you really need to be looking at a five-year time span at the very least. If you have less time than this, or do not want to tie up your money for that long, then you would need to consider other options, such as savings accounts or shorter-term investments
- What is your attitude to risk? This is a big part of investing and will influence the investment decisions you make. If you invest in shares your capital will rise and fall according to how the markets are performing. You may want to consider a less risky investment than shares!
- How much can you invest? It is really critical to work out how much you have available to invest, and whether or not you can afford to lose it! So, making sure all your other money commitments are covered first has to be your primary starting point
- Do you want to invest a lump sum or drip-feed your investment funds into the markets over time?
- Can you afford the costs associated with investing? Unlike keeping cash in the bank, investing will involved initial and on-going costs, which if your money is invested properly, these costs should far outweighed by your growth, but having an understanding of the impact of these costs on your investments and trying to minimise them as much as possible is important.
- What are your tax liabilities? There are a variety of taxes associated with investing that generally relate to the purchase and sale of shares, including Capital Gains Tax and Stamp Duty, Income Tax on dividends etc.
Once all these questions have been considered and answered, you will have a clear plan and agreed strategy with your Financial Advisor, which means you are then ready to start investing.