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Coming up against a wall of cynicism

We are arranging a home-equity release plan for two clients. Keen to ensure every i is dotted and every t is crossed, our network imposes very stringent vetting measures on all such business before we can proceed.

The two providers with whom we have dealt so far all seem intent on being as efficient, professional and helpful as they can. We only use Ship-approved products.

I was asked by the client to contact their solicitor. A strange welcome awaited me. It was clear that this solicitor holds the entire financial services industry in very low esteem, referring to some other provider who had been “peddling” this particular product a couple of years earlier.

I asked if he felt it was really necessary to use such pejorative terminology, not least in view of how far the industry has come since the admittedly bad old days of the Eighties. He was not really interested. I asked him his first name so that I could address the correspondence he wished to be sent to him but he seemed extremely reluctant to disclose this. How odd.

Life companies may be spouting on about the great opportunities available to IFAs in view of the latest developments concerning the responsibilities of trustees towards funds in their care but getting past the wall of cynical disapproval one invariably encounters when prospecting is something most of us would prefer to do without.

Julian Stevens

WDS Independent Financial Advisers,

Kingswood, Bristol

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