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Buck Consultants launches non-advised annuity shopping-around service

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Employee benefits firm Buck Consultants has launched a non-advised annuity shopping around service for people with pension pots worth more than £20,000.

The new service, called ‘Retirement Assured’, allows users to check the different rates offered by providers using an online calculator.

Anyone who wants to buy an annuity through the service will need to contact the firm’s telephone quotation service, where they will be taken through a series of medical questions to determine whether they qualify for an enhanced annuity and provided with guidance on their retirement options.

Retirement Assured will then source quotes from across UK annuity market.

Someone with a pension pot worth less than £20,000 will not receive the full non-advised shopping around service and will instead be offered a Legal & General annuity, with whom Retirement Assured has a single-tie arrangement.

The firm says it will receive between 1 per cent and 3 per cent in commission when someone buys an annuity through the service, which has been developed by Annuity Bureau founder Peter Quinton.

Quinton says: “Consumers are increasingly becoming self-directed – and not always by choice – in their personal finance matters. However, we believe a complete DIY solution for purchasing annuities is dangerous. 

“This comparison site has been designed to help fill the “advice gap” left by the RDR, providing those in the process of selecting an annuity with a simple way of sourcing the best quote for their individual circumstances with the added benefit of being able to speak to an annuity specialist.”

Evovle Financial Plannning director Jason Witcombe says: “As long as non-advised services like this are absolutely clear they are not providing advice then they can be a force for good in the annuity market.”

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