Mystery Shopper: Portsmouth

Accudo, 23 High Street, Old Portsmouth PO1 2LS

Telephone Manner: Friendly and helpful. 5/5

Relevant Qualifications: Level four (Chartered Insurance Institute). 5/5

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Payment Method: Hourly rate for advice was £250 or 2 per cent of initial investment as an initial charge plus 0.75 per cent of total investment going forward on a yearly basis. 4/5

Guidance Given: Make use of Isa allowances, put the maximum allowed on a pension (£50,000 a year), plus other investments in unit trusts. 3/5

Knowledge: She seemed to know what he was talking about, although made it clear that she was not yet a chartered financial adviser. 3/5

Email/Web Presence: 5/5

Verdict: Seemed a bit limited in the range of advice offered.


Lane Financial Management, 17 Pembroke Road, Old Portsmouth PO1 2NT

Speed of Response: Time of call: 10.45am. Three rings, through to a receptionist, given mobile phone number for a partner who answered immediately. 5/5

Telephone Manner: Helpful and knowledgeable. 5/5

Relevant Qualifications: Chartered financial planner, level four. 5/5

Payment Method: Two per cent initial charge on initial investments, and 1 per cent annual charge thereafter. However he made it clear that the annual charge would be taken out of the profits from the investments. 4/5

Guidance Given: He said to make use of the Isa allowances every year, highlighted that pension money was taxable when it started being withdrawn, and also suggested investment in a range of units trusts, which could be made more tax-efficient by offsetting them against Isa allowances. 4/5

Knowledge: The adviser went into much greater detail than any of the other advisers. 4/5

Email/Web Presence:

email: 5/5

Verdict: The most helpful and proficient of the advisers contacted.


Magill & Co, 303 Titchfield Road, Fareham PO14 3ER

Speed of Response: Time of call: 11.15am Answered by a receptionist after two rings, then straight through to a senior partner. 5/5

Telephone Manner: Friendly and helpful. 5/5

Relevant Qualifications: Chartered financial planner. 5/5

Payment Method: Either a flat fee of £180 an hour, or percentages of the total initial investment (4.5 per cent up to £10,000, 3 per cent up to £200,000, and 1 per cent to 2 per cent up to £500,000, depending on complexity of investments). 4/5

Guidance Given: Take full advantage of Isa allowances, then unit trusts, and lastly pension funds. 3/5

Knowledge: Very knowledgeable across all areas and the only person who asked me how much the shopper wanted a year to retire on, and then worked backwards from that figure. 4/5

Email/Web Presence: Current email addresses and website details are being changed at time of press. 1/5

Verdict: Extremely practical advice and very affably delivered.


Provider: Nationwide

Speed of Response: Time of call: 11am Two rings and the representative said the shopper needed to book an appointment for a telephone conversation with a branch. After the shopper said no, he was transferred to an adviser. 2/5