The more complex an issue is, the more important that everyone involved is on the same page. When it comes to our finances, our lives, and the lives of the people we love, things can get complex very, very quickly. This is why it’s so important for the professionals you employ to have all of the information and all of your wishes and objectives in hand when providing you with advice.
There are a huge number of benefits to seeking a one stop shop for your financial and legal affairs. In this article, I’ll be explaining some of these key benefits, and why you should really consider a joined up approach to your finances.
Too many cooks (potentially) spoil the finances
I think that’s how the saying goes, but whether you’re making soup or looking after your financial affairs, it’s vital that everyone understands your objectives and plan. Because the legal and financial world can be so complex, there are generally many different ways to solve your problems. Whether you're looking to invest for the future, pass on assets to your children or manage your inheritance tax liability, there are many different strategies that can achieve a similar outcome.
Potential problems arise if you have different professionals taking different approaches. For example, your financial adviser may be making recommendations that negate some of the advice you have received from your solicitor. That doesn’t mean that the advice from either of the professionals is necessarily wrong, but it may just not be compatible with the other.
Whilst professionals from different firms and businesses can always work together, it is common to come across issues with communication, data sharing limitations and conflicting business practices. Having all of your advice with one company or business removes these potential barriers.
Berin Jones, from the Irwin Mitchell Tax, Trusts and Estates team says: “Clients really benefit from a joined up approach. Working closely with the client’s financial advisor is invaluable and indeed is necessary to ensure that the client is getting the correct holistic advice.”
Continuity of advice
Even if you do manage to get a number of different professionals across different businesses on the same page, the likelihood is that at some point, someone will leave. This could be a smooth transition, but it could also restart all of the initial issues and require significant input to get everyone back on the same page.
Having all of your legal and financial advice in one place doesn’t mean none of your advisors will ever leave the company or retire, but it does mean that the transition process is likely to go much more smoothly.
Protect your own time
The vast majority of our clients want the best for their family and their finances, but also don’t want to spend hours and hours on the details. How often have you had a financial job on your “to-do” list that just never gets done? Getting a will completed or updated is always the one I see the most!
Many of our client meetings are held with all of the professionals in the same room. This means you can be discussing (for example) your investment portfolio, then your Will, then the conveyancing on your new property, and finally passing over some final details for your tax return with our tax team.
Rather than needing to book four different meetings at four different offices (or Zoom calls), you can get everything done at once.
The next generation
Estate planning and inheritance tax planning is a big part of what we do. This means that at some point, we will likely be speaking to your spouse or you beneficiaries about your estate. I hear so many clients tell me that they just want things kept simple for their surviving partner or their children, and having a joined up approach is one of the best ways to do this.
It means that there’s no need for them to dig out five different reports on five different letterheads, calling each and every company and trying to join the dots. Instead, everything is consolidated and everyone is one same page.
A joined up approach to your finances is about having a team of professionals all helping you towards your objectives. It’s about ensuring that everyone is heading in the same direction, and that the advice from each compliments rather than conflicts.
Not only does this have the potential to result in better financial outcomes, but it also creates a framework that requires less input from you and allows your professional advisors the ability to maximise their value to you.
If you’d like to discuss any aspect of your financial situation, don’t hesitate to get in touch for a no cost discussion.