I have been staggered by the amount of negative responses from the IFA community to the FSA's recent proposals which have appeared in the trade press in the last two weeks.
It is time that those who only seek to protect their vested interests in the status quo should shut up and not get in the way of the industry's metamorphosis to becoming a profession.
These proposals are the best thing that could have happened to both consumers and professional intermediaries alike.
The only way that consumers can get impartial, unbiased advice is to pay someone a fee for their time.I do not care what inter-mediaries say.
If they continue to be paid by product providers, their advice will continue to be biased, unimaginative and generally poor value for money.
We decided to redesign our service and to charge for the amount of time we spent on clients' affairs.
The arrangement of products is now almost incidental to the process of helping clients plan the financial side of their lives. The process was not without its difficulties but now that the changes are complete, we are more profitable and in a great position for the future.
IFAs should spend less time bleating about the regulator changing the goalposts and spend more time thinking about how they are going to improve the service they give their clients.