This is a question clients often tell me they were afraid to ask.
First and foremost, Wealth Management isn’t a barrier to having a conversation with me or one of the PM+M team. Don’t think about in terms of ‘I haven’t got any wealth to manage’ but rather ‘have I got financial plans for my future?’
There is no limit, value or threshold on who we talk to and who we don’t. Everyone needs financial planning advice at some time or other and we are always happy to have an initial no obligation conversation.
The term Wealth Management has grown from the segmentation within the financial service industry of those who sell financial products, from those who actually advise. Fundamentally it represents a branch of the industry that turned its back on receiving commission where costs were shrouded by smoke and mirrors, turning instead towards clear and transparent charging for the time, skill, expertise and experience of finding the best solutions to meet client needs.
This ‘new model’ of advice became an industry standard on 1 January 2013 when commission payments were banned under legislation brought in following the Retail Distribution Review. The legislation also meant that a higher minimum level of qualification was required of financial advisers. Here at PM+M this ‘new’ model has been followed for almost 15 years, whilst the professional qualifications have not only been met but have exceeded the new standards.
What does this mean? Simply it means that we put our clients’ financial planning needs before anything else. Of course we expect to cover our costs and to make a profit – in fact it is essential (a non-profitable financial advisory firm is unlikely to remain open) as a profitable firm is likely to be there for many years to come supporting its clients for the long term as well as having the ability to invest in its people and systems.
In very simple terms, whether you call it Wealth Management or Financial Planning, there are three basic steps that drive our actions on behalf of you, the client. These are:
1. Plan for your future
2. Minimise your tax
3. Optimise investment returns
There is a second process that underpins this to give you peace of mind:
- Assess and understand
- Set your goals and objectives
- Detailed plans and recommendations
- Monitor and review
Our aim is to support your financial planning journey, as well as that of your family, for many years to come. This is done by giving you the confidence that you have a team of professionals working on your behalf for your best interests.
One thing that helps to separate PM+M from the competition is the fact that we are much more than Wealth Management. The firm was and still is predominantly an accountancy practice with almost 100 years of history and growth. Originating in Blackburn and still based here, as well as having offices in Burnley and Bury, we currently employ 90 people across our various departments providing a range of financial and business services to individual and business clients of all shapes and sizes. Within Wealth Management there are 8 of us, of which 4 are advisers, but in reality our team is closely linked with our wider team of specialists across the firm. Specialist departments include Tax, Audit, Payroll, Corporate Finance, IT and the ever growing Run My Business. Our specialists are as likely to be found dealing with the tax return of a mobile-hairdresser as they are advising on a multi-million business acquisition. We work particularly closely with our tax colleagues in providing a complete estate and capital taxes planning service. Corporate finance can also be very handy if part of your financial planning involves selling your business when you retire.
The fact that we see our relationship with our clients as long term also means that, unlike some advisers, we aim to recoup our reasonable costs over the fullness of time rather than front-loading them with high initial charges. This is a different business-model to most, but reflects the fact that we look after a very significant amount of money for our clients and have done so for many years.
Hopefully, this has helped paint a picture as to what we do and how we do it. What this blog can’t convey is the spirit in which we aim to deliver our service as one of our core values is to have fun – happy people make for a happy firm which makes for happy clients – it really is that simple!
If you want to know more, please get in touch or attend one of our informal seminars where you can get a feel for who we are, what we do and how we do it.
Neil Welsh – Wealth Management IFA
PM+M Wealth Management Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.