Foundation Financial Planning have been offering independent financial advice in Haywards Heath, Lindfield, Cuckfield and West Sussex for 23 years and is probably the most established local firm of Independent Financial Advisers in the area. We meet with clients in our offices in Haywards Heath but we are also happy to see clients at their home or their offices; wherever it is convenient for them. Some of our clients are City and West End based and we work with health and legal professionals, company directors and trustees. We attract a diverse client base to include; employed, retired and self-employed individuals. Our simple principle is to add value effectively. We are Independent Financial Advisers and it is fundamental to us that we give advice without fear, without favour and without bias.
Foundation Financial Planning is an independent Financial Adviser (IFAs) and provides independent financial advice. The difference between independent financial advice and other types of advice, e.g. restricted advice, is that IFA’s work for their clients and restricted advisers work for their company. With restricted advisers there may be a conflict over whose interest to serve: their companies or their clients. Independent Financial advice is much more in tune with managing a clients wealth mainly because of the scope and freedom IFA’s have.
Many advisers, both restricted and independent, work on a percentage of the amount being invested. However Foundation Financial Planning do not work this way because it may be unfair. E.g. If capital is coming from a client’s bank account it is much easier to get this invested into the markets than if the capital were coming from another investment company or a pension fund. Likewise if tax advice were required it would be important for this tax advice to accompany the investment process.
So simply measuring out an advice process based on the amount being invested seems an inadequate way to make the arrangement.
Principally there are two parts to Retirement Planning: firstly; accumulating capital and secondly; de-accumulating this capital. We help with both parts and pride ourselves on creative tax approaches that maximise tax advantages attached to accumulation and de-accumulation. De-accumulation often connects with estate planning and other wealth management areas that Foundation Financial Planning can assist with.
At Foundation Financial Planning we believe the following
- It is good for a client to have visibility of their financial accounts at all times
- A client would want to know their accounts are being monitored at all times and that if changes are required these changes are made timely, further to approval
- That at least once a year a valuation and an evaluation of investments and financial arrangements takes place. At the same time if investments need to be altered these alterations can be made without further cost
- That the evaluation confirms their investments are still in tune with objectives attitude to risk
- That the clients overall Wealth Management is being addressed
- There is more information about our ongoing proposition in our Combined Initial Disclosure Document (CIDD)
Foundation Financial Planning give Inheritance Tax advice. Inheritance Tax advice is a combination of:-
- Using exemptions and reliefs ie gifts on marriage, the annual exemption, gifts from income
- Making direct gifts to family member and others
- Using Declarations of Trust to gift assets away e.g. property
- Settling assets into trust. This allows for a certain amount of control by the person making the gift
- Using Wealth Management techniques to optimise a clients situation
- Insurance policies to help fund all or some of the Inheritance Tax liability
- Judiciously using any Business Property Relief
- Using Potentially Exempt Transfers and the 7 year rule
- Using Chargeable Lifetime Transfer up to the Nil Rate Band
- There also may be a case for releasing equity from property and placing that equity outside of the clients estate in a way that allows them access to this equity/capital
How much we charge is linked to how we work. Typically a client is charged a blended rate. A blended rate takes into account who is required to do the work involved. If the work agreed with the client involves admin and basic financial advice they will pay the lower rate and the mid rate. The lower rate is £75.00 per hour and the mid rate is £125.00 per hour. If more technical advice is required this is charged at £185.00 per hour and is called the higher rate. There is more about this in our Combined Initial Disclosure Document (CIDD). However, we do not work on an hourly charge basis, we work on a project rate. Before undertaking any work for you we itemise the activities required, submit the project rate to you and negotiate with you before proceeding.
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) prefer we make our hourly rates known but the project rate basis is always a lot less than the hourly rates we publicise. We are prepared to negotiate our fees. This negotiation would have to take into account that there may be procedures laid down by the FCA that cannot be neglected and that the quality our work is not compromised. Independent financial advice is not a ‘zero sum game’ it is a win/win arrangement so fees charged are an investment made by the client to make arrangements that will stand the test of time and bring rewards that may make the fee charged look trivial in comparison.
Portfolios are bespoke and are built on a step-by-step basis using Morningstar asset allocation parameters. We avoid using model portfolios as a default option because we feel model portfolios do not match with our philosophy of tailoring our service to meet our clients’ needs rather than the other way around.
Our recommendations are not based on past performance although past performance is assessed. We work on measuring risk and there are many ways to do this. Ideally, we build portfolios that show outperformance in rising markets, do not track the market down at the same rate and have low volatility.
We have the systems to monitor and recommend: Investment Trusts, Exchange Traded Funds, Structured Products and more main stream investments and the processes in place to recommend, where applicable: Seed Enterprise Investments, Venture Capital Trusts and Enterprise Investment Schemes. Our thorough understanding of tax gives us an edge to optimise these devices.
We have a more concise document available that explores our investment process in more detail and is available on request.