Nick Bamford


Nick Bamford: Taking pleasure in stepping back from advice

A colleague and I had just finished presenting the outcome of a financial planning exercise to a lovely couple spending a good deal of time and money exploring the world post-redundancy/retirement. We had spent the best part of an hour looking at their net worth position, their income and expenditure, and how the relationship between […]


Nick Bamford: What the FCA must learn from 30 years of regulatory failure

Way back in time (before some readers of this magazine were even born), I made a decision to become an independent financial adviser. I remember at the time being told by some colleagues it was a poor decision because the recently introduced Financial Services Act 1986 would eliminate independent advice. A similar message has been […]


Nick Bamford: Making use of the off button

I do a fair amount of driving, which is not something I enjoy very much, but is made tolerable by good old Radio 4. In the past two years, though, I have found myself turning the radio off at regular intervals. The reason? That dreaded word – Brexit. I do not know about you, but […]


Nick Bamford: What does culture really mean for an advice firm?

In a recent column for Money Marketing, Sandringham chief executive Tim Sargisson argued that a business’s culture was more important than titles such as “chartered”. A lot is written about culture within firms but what does it actually mean in practice? I guess there are two perspectives: how the business is perceived by its clients […]


Nick Bamford: Problems with paraplanner recruitment

Recruitment is one of the most challenging jobs for a business owner. Get it right and the business is enhanced. Get it wrong and it costs. Like many other firms, we are currently in the process of recruiting an additional paraplanner. This is an area where demand seems to be exceeding supply. We struggle a […]


Nick Bamford: Are you noticing vulnerability?

The ageing population means we are likely to be dealing with more elderly people. Although the term “elderly” means different things to different people, we must be careful of vulnerability here. In fact, the FCA definition of a vulnerable client is broad: “Someone who, due to their personal circumstances, is especially susceptible to detriment, particularly […]


Nick Bamford: Don’t be dumb, use a checklist

I was lying on a hospital bed being wheeled into surgery (nothing serious, I am pleased to say) as I tried to distract myself listening to the conversation between the anaesthetist and the theatre nurses. The anaesthetist was speaking out loud as she carried out her work: “First, I will inject the antibiotic…” I believe […]


Nick Bamford: The Marmite issue of cashflow forecasts    

Financial planners should be constantly challenging the efficacy of things they do for clients. One area of recent attention has been around lifetime cashflow forecasting. Demonstrating the future financial position of a client this way is a bit of a Marmite issue for advisers: some love it, others hate it. I have heard some challenge […]


Nick Bamford: Contingent charging scares off clients

I received a new enquiry by email this morning. It contained a statement from the sender as follows: “I have spoken to a number of advisers but I feel they are trying to sell me products rather than give me impartial advice. What I want is some proper advice for which I can pay a fee […]


Nick Bamford: Pension freedoms have given clients control

When the pension freedoms were first introduced, I could not help thinking it was a clever device to accelerate the income tax take. Instead of waiting many years to take income tax against modest annuity income payments, the government could grab a larger handful straightaway. After a couple of years of reflection, I still think […]