Five things: Picking the right Sipp provider

Five things: Picking the right Sipp provider

We are now just six days away from the retirement freedoms, and choosing which product to put money is becoming more and more important.

Self-invested personal pensions (Sipps) are just one pension product that have become increasingly popular over the past few years, and according to the most recent Money Management survey, assets are booming and assets under management has reached more than £123bn.

But choosing the right Sipp may not be as easy as anticipated. There are many options to look out for. Here are some key features to keep an eye out for.

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1. The right provider. Choosing the best provider for your client may be quite difficult – there are many operators who offer different investments at different costs. Now, reputation is key – ask around to see which companies are known to have good service for your clients.

2. Cost. There are no uniform pricing guidelines for Sipps, meaning it can be tough to decipher the value of the product. Some companies will charge flat fees and others will have varying costs. Look around at different charges to see if you will be getting the best value for money.

3. Accessibility. Having access to a Sipp is increasingly important, particularly if they are constrained to certain platforms. If this is the case, how easily can they be moved onto other platforms?

4. Service. Good service can be the be all and end all. Where available, look into complaints data for the providers you are thinking of going with. Also, ask if they have any service requirements they have to meet. Many Sipp operators will have their own service accreditations.

5. Permitted investments. This point can be crucial. Each provider will allow a multitude of investments, but there may be fewer that accept non-standard investments. Commercial property has always been one of the most popular elements of Sipps, but some providers have dropped it from their allowable investment lists.