Two leading IFAs clashed over whether consumers are willing to pay fees for financial advice at last week's Money Marketing Live.
True Financial Planning managing director John Baxter, whose umbrella organisation advocates fee-based advice, and Berkeley Independent Advisers chief executive Richard Howells disagreed with each other over how easy it is for commission-remunerated advisers to move to a fee-charging basis.
Baxter said as long as a firm demonstrates it is offering a value-added service, clients will pay fees. But Howells said there is no evidence of willingness to pay fees, meaning that unless a firm has substantial capital behind it, the transition may prove to be out of reach for most IFAs.
Howells said: “How many of us are operating a set-up to move to a fee-based system to do business? There might be the desire to but there is a question of the ability of the small adviser to make the transition to fees.”
Baxter said: “I would not pay a fee for the level of service the average IFA provides to their clients. Advisers must demonstrate value for money so people will buy it.”