1. Best thing about being a financial adviser?
Being able to help people make sense of their financial situation. Many people are in a better financial situation than they realise, and if we can show them a few key things they can do, then this can make a considerable difference in their lives.
2. One thing you would like to see improved or changed in the industry?
Make the financial planning environment less complicated and costly for those seeking advice, by removing any conflicts of interest for advisers. I would like to see independent financial advice become the ‘norm’ for this profession.
3. The areas on their finances or economy that worry your clients the most?
The volatility of investment markets, the changing legislative environment and the fluid nature of living life. This is exactly why working with a financial planner will always be useful. To provide impartial, sound judgment, to guide clients through these changes.
4. What's the strangest question a client has ever asked you?
Why would I invest in shares when my bank pays me 3% interest ‘calculated daily’!? Of course I was able to explain that he would only receive 1/365th of the interest calculated on any day. What may be simple to us, is not always simple to others.
5. If you could get three things into consumers' heads about what advisers do or don't do what would they be?
a) You do not need at least $500,000 to see a financial planner.
b) Diversify - your financial strategies and investments.
c) Don’t try and time markets – start something now, do something regularly, take advantage of opportunities as they come.
6. How do you describe your job at BBQs?
I am an independent financial planner. I help people plan their financial lives by understanding what they have, where they are going, and how to get there.
7. Do you think the growth in share and property markets will continue in the future?
Absolutely! So long as you believe that:
1) The ‘capitalist’ system will continue,
2) Population will keep growing, and
3) Technology keeps improving.
These are the key points that underpin how investment returns are created.