Meeting your financial adviser

Prepare for your meeting with a financial adviser

  • Be clear about what you want from an adviser. Are you looking for general advice on financial planning, or advice about something specific?
  • Do some research and find out about the different products that are available. You can check our jargon buster for financial terms so you have a better understanding and are prepared
  • Once you have done your research, prepare a list of questions that you want to ask the adviser
  • Bring documents to your meeting that your adviser may need, such as proof of your address, identity and income
  • Bring information on any financial products that you have, such as any loans, mortgages, investments or other assets

At the meeting

  • Always answer your adviser’s questions fully and honestly. It will help you and your adviser to get a clearer picture of your overall circumstances
  • Take notes during the meeting in case you forget something, and ask questions about anything you don’t understand
  • Take time to consider any recommendations carefully, and don’t sign anything unless you have read and understood it fully

Questions to ask

There are some questions you should ask your adviser, regardless of the type of product you are getting advice on:

  • How does this product meet my needs?
  • What charges are involved? How do they compare with similar products?
  • Are the charges ongoing or are they once-off?
  • What would happen if you missed a regular payment on this product?
  • What, if any, ongoing service can you expect if the adviser receives a commission?

There are also specific questions you should ask yourself or your adviser if you are getting advice on investments, insurance, mortgages or pensions.

Investments

  • What are the main risks with this investment?
  • Is your investment, or any growth on your investment, secure?
  • What is the minimum recommended term of the investment?
  • If you cash in your investment early, will you have to pay a penalty?
  • Will the investment affect your tax or social welfare benefits?
  • How will you find out how your investment or pension is performing?

Get more information on investments.

Pensions

  • Do you need a regular income when you retire, in addition to the state pension?
  • Do you need to provide for other dependents after you die?
  • What rate of tax will you be paying on your income?
  • Do you have any serious medical condition which may reduce your life expectancy in retirement?
  • Have you any other assets you can use in your retirement which may provide you with an income such as other property, savings, investments etc?
  • Consider the advantages and disadvantages between an Approved Retirement Fund and a regular secure income before you decide

Get more information on planning for your pension and pension benefits after retiring.

Insurance

  • What am I covered for and for how long?
  • Is this cover necessary for me?
  • Could the premium increase for any reason?
  • When and why could my claim be refused?

Get more information on insurance.

Mortgages

  • How much can I borrow?
  • What is the best type of mortgage for my needs?
  • What is the APR (annual percentage rate)?
  • What are the monthly repayments over different terms, such as 20, 30, 35 years?
  • If I get a discounted rate, what rate applies at the end of the discounted period and what effect will that have on my repayments and the total cost of the loan?
  • What effect will an increase in interest rates have on my repayments?
  • How often is the interest on my mortgage calculated (e.g. daily, weekly, monthly or quarterly) and what effect will this have on my total repayments?
  • Are there flexible terms available?
  • What are the penalties if I change from a fixed to a variable rate?
  • Do I have to pay an indemnity bond?
  • Do you charge a fee if I don’t take your mortgage offer?

Get more information on mortgages.

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