CompaniesMay 7 2013

Advisers report post-RDR influx of new-to-advice clients

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ByDonia O’Loughlin

Demand for full service financial advice could be on the rise, according to a survey of IFAs conducted by intermediary ratings website VouchedFor, which revealed 97 per cent have taken on new clients since the January rule changes, many of which are completely new to advice.

The survey of 223 IFAs found that 97 per cent reported taking on new clients post-Retail Distribution Review, while 81 per cent of firms stated they had not lost a single client. Of the new clients acquired, some 40 per cent have never before used a financial adviser.

In addition, 38 per cent of the advisers that said they have taken on new clients said they had taken on more in the first three months after RDR than in the same period in 2012. Only 10 per cent reported a decline year on year.

With just one exception, IFAs that had experienced any client outflow put this down to factors not linked to RDR.

The statistics suggest that the predicated migration from independent advice in the wake of fee transparency simply has not occurred, VouchedFor said.

Adam Price, founder of VouchedFor, flagged up that although there have been a lot of assertions that DIY investing is booming as a result of RDR, the reality is that there is no evidence to support this.

He said: “In actual fact the IFA market is growing and the effects of fee transparency have on the whole been very positive.

“Providing clients with information about fees from the outset undoubtedly helps to demystify what, for many, is a very complicated market. With the pending bank advice service closures about to create an unprecedented influx of new clients looking for advice, savvy IFAs can use their new transparent status to attract new business.”

VouchedFor now has over 600 IFA members, a figure that has doubled since January 2013, and allows consumers to review over 20,000 UK IFAs. IFAs with a good profile and positive reviews are receiving over 10 new client enquiries a month, VouchedFor said.