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What is financial planning?

When people ask us, “What is financial planning?” We don't answer with flashy words or jargon, quite simply, our definition of financial planning is: a recommendation process, helping a client move from their current financial position to a preferred one in the future. It identifies your goals and explores opportunities so you can work towards your version of success. We work in partnership with you, educating you on how to manage your money, so you can make your own decisions with the support of our highly knowledgeable, experienced Chartered Financial Planners.
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Financial planners, advisers accountants, what do we all do?

With so many options around, it’s easy to think “what do financial advisers do?”. Financial services firms describe themselves in different ways: financial planners, advisers, coaches, consultants, money planners, asset managers, need we go on? At Unividual, we call ourselves financial planners. In fact, the Chartered Insurance Institute has awarded Unividual the prestigious status of ‘Chartered Financial Planners‘.

On the face of it, all these titles and identities seem to do similar things. A financial adviser is a financial planner. However, as you look deeper, you will realise that most businesses offer varying services, or have different product areas they can advise on. These subtle differences are confusing to us all and it’s tempting to abandon your research altogether, but that is where we try to keep things straight forward.

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Financial coaching and building your literacy

Unividual gives financial planning advice across every area of someone’s personal and/or business finances. Our version of financial planning is completely bespoke to a client’s goals, circumstances and aspirations because we believe each client is unique and financial advice shouldn’t be “off the shelf” but tailored to real people.

One of the reasons why Unividual becomes such an important part of a family or business, is because not everyone realises what they want out of life and we empower people to understand this, so they can become the version of success they aspire to be. We use case studies and ideas to help people realise their goals. Advisers then coach clients so they truly understand different areas of their finances. Together, we come up with ideas and different methods you will have never even thought about. Because of this education, you get to choose the routes we go down rather than feel like you are being told what to do by a professional. Then, our teams in London, Bristol and Bath administer and manage all your financial areas so that you can spend your time on other areas of your life.

Most of all though, our clients always talk about a feeling of safety that Unividual provides; a reduction in anxiety and stress because they can sleep safely at night knowing there is a team of highly qualified and experienced people keeping a safe eye on their finances. When you partner with Unividual, it will feel like collaboration and together we ensure you have the best possibility of reaching your goals.

We don't tell you what to do!

Our style is not to tell you what to do. Instead, we give you the knowledge and support to get your financial house in order and empower you to make the right decisions at the right time. This proactive approach ensures our clients get the greatest return from their life. We still start off with a first meeting where we explain what financial planning is, how everything works and give you some ideas on the types of financial areas we could take a look at. Following on we do what the industry terms as a “fact find”, a very impersonal term for getting to know you, your current situation and where you want to be in the future. Following on from that the financial planning process starts and we put together and maintain your financial plan.

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How does financial planning benefit me?

Knowing if financial planning is right for you and having a plan in place is key to making more from your money. A study by the International Longevity Centre, published in July 2017, found that individuals who took financial advice between 2001 and 2007 had significantly higher savings by 2012-2014 than those who did not. Interestingly, this included the credit crash in 2008-09 when investment returns suffered. The study didn’t just focus on affluent groups of people. In the “getting by” group, people taking advice saved on average £14,036 more in liquid financial assets than those who didn’t, and £25,859 more in pension wealth. For those who had retired, people who took pension advice earned up to £880 more per year than their non-advised peers. In the affluent group, people who received financial advice accumulated, on average, £12,363 more in liquid financial assets than those who didn’t, and £30,882 more in pension savings.

There isn’t just the aspect of savings and growth of money, there are real tangible benefits to financial advice that impact on your daily life as well.

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