Mystery Shopper  

Mystery Shopper: York

Mystery Shopper: York

Each week the mystery shopper seeks advice from independent 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 is in York calling to see if she should stay in her company’s auto-enrolment pension scheme. She has just finished university and is about to enter a graduate job. She wants to know the best options for saving in her age group.

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Adviser: Flying Colours (independent)

Address: 1 Acomb Road, York YO24 4EN

Speed of response (time of call): 11:11am. Transferred to adviser a receptionist. 5/5

Telephone manner: Enthusiastic and welcoming. 5/5

Relevant qualifications: Diploma in financial advice. 5/5

Payment method: Usually cost would be dependent on the work. But the adviser explained charging for the basic advice given would be unethical. 5/5

Guidance given: The adviser warned it would be impossible to say with certainty the best course of action due to the shopper’s young age. He recommended staying in the company pension and clearly explained different pension types. He explained that placing excess savings in a help to buy or Lifetime Isa would be beneficial given the shopper’s age. He also suggested the shopper look at income protection. 5/5

Knowledge: The adviser spoke with great knowledge and was able to give the shopper rough calculations. He was willing to explain concepts in a clear detailed manner. 5/5


Email: 5/5

Verdict: Shopper's choice. The adviser was extremely friendly and very willing to help. He made the shopper feel at ease and welcomed to return for future services.



Adviser: Walker Crips Wealth Management (independent)

Address: Foss Islands House, Foss Islands Road, York YO31 7UJ

Speed of response (time of call): 11:41am. Transferred to an adviser from a receptionist. 5/5

Telephone manner: Cold and patronising. 2/5

Relevant qualifications: Chartered financial planner. 5/5

Payment method: Minimum £1000 fee. 5/5

Guidance: The adviser recommended staying in the auto-enrolment scheme and adding as much as possible. She also supported putting any surplus in a Lifetime Isa. Any further information required a meeting. 3/5

Knowledge: The adviser seemed knowledgeable but the shopper would have liked more information. 4/5


Email: 5/5

Verdict: The adviser seemed dismissive and reluctant to speak to the shopper.  



Adviser: G&E Wealth Management (independent)

Address: Arabesque House, Monks Cross Drive, Huntington, York YO32 9GW

Speed of response (time of call): 11:54am Transferred to an adviser from a receptionist. 5/5

Telephone manner: Polite and professional. 5/5