Life Insurance  

Mystery shopper: Bromley

Each week the mystery shopper seeks advice from independent and tied advisers in the UK. The aim is to find out whether advisers are delivering the goods when it comes to the all-important initial telephone contact between client and adviser. It is only intended to evaluate this first interview, and it is understood that further meetings would be necessary before final decisions could be made. The purpose is not to expose poor selling practices, but to show constructively any weaknesses in the advice process.

This week the mystery shopper visits Bromley in Kent, seeking advice on protection options that will cater to his circumstances. He and his wife, with one child aged one, are two years into their 25-year fixed-term mortgage. The shopper has become the main breadwinner after his wife opted to work part-time to look after the child.

Adviser (Independent): Chaldon Fox Associates, 20 London Road, Bromley, BR1 3QR

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Speed of response:

Time of call: 12.07pm. The call was answered after three rings. 5/5

Telephone manner:

Courteous and helpful. 5/5

Relevant qualifications:

Advanced Financial Planning Certificate. 5/5

Payment method:

Provider commission. 5/5

Guidance given:

The adviser said the shopper should consider taking out a mortgage life insurance, which would remove the burden of loan repayments from his spouse at the event of his death. He added that a joint life insurance policy would cover the lives of the couple and tends to be cheaper than buying two separate policies. 3/5

Knowledge:

The adviser had good knowledge, but failed to mention the suitability of other products such as CI, but the adviser did say a comprehensive overview would await a meeting. 3/5

Email/web presence:

tony@chaldonfoxassociates.co.uk

www.chaldonfoxassociates.co.uk 5/5

Verdict:

Good overall. The shopper would have liked more guidance on critical illness, but the adviser delivered helpful insight on life insurance.

31/35

Adviser (Independent): Succession Group (via Maze Wealth), 6 Chancery Lane, Beckenham, Kent, BR3 6NR

Speed of response:

Time of call: 12.13pm. The call was answered after three rings. 5/5

Telephone manner:

Open, friendly and helpful. 5/5

Relevant qualifications:

Level four diploma. 5/5

Payment method:

Provider commission. 5/5

Guidance given:

A decreasing term insurance, designed to cover the reducing amount a borrower owes on a repayment mortgage, and CI cover, are among a host of options, the adviser said. Family income benefit was also mentioned, which pays out regular tax-free income for a set period of time to the policyholder’s next of kin in the event of death, the adviser said. 4/5

Knowledge:

A sound overview of the different life insurance options available was offered. The adviser mentioned CI, but fell short of offering guidance on the cover. 4/5

Email/web presence:

paul.pascoe@successiongroup.co.uk

www.successiongroup.co.uk 5/5

Verdict:

Superb. The adviser addressed the options in much detail and delivered clear and concise guidance in a friendly manner.

33/35

Adviser (Independent): James Mercer 2plan Wealth Management, Pickhurst Green, Bromley, BR2 7QT

Speed of response:

Time of call: 12.25pm. The call was answered after three rings. 5/5

Telephone manner:

Boisterous and engaging. 5/5

Relevant qualifications:

Level four diploma. 5/5

Payment method:

Provider commission. 5/5

Guidance given:

The adviser suggested the best course of action would be to arrange an initial face-to-face meeting to get a better understanding of the couple’s circumstance. Those with dependents should take out life insurance and critical illness to ensure that their loved ones would not descend into financial peril at the event of their death. 3/5