End Of Year Report
As we power through the end of the year looking forward to a well earned festive break it's as good a time as any to look at our achievements since we launched the business and the overall SIPP landscape.
Firstly a very big thank you to those who have supported us and placed business with our SIPP, SSAS or Flexible Family Trust products. With 500 SIPP commitments already and new doors opening all the time we have made very good progress in a short space of time.
Our objective for 2010 will continue to be to provide financial advisers and planners with quality personal service via well priced and slick products. So; so far so good and in our day to day dealings with you guys here are a couple of key points made regarding SIPPs and SIPP providers:
Size isn't everything?
We've said before that size alone is not the redeeming feature in selecting a SIPP provider, for a range of reasons. Yes firms need adequate systems, controls and experience to cope with (amongst other things) the regulatory burden but size alone does not guarantee this.
The negative press in 2009 has focussed mainly on small providers, giving the impression that they alone are a cause for concern. History tells us, though, that there is as big a risk of things going wrong when companies get too big as well as too small. The news of an investigation into a possible fraud at Rowanmoor following the tragic death of David Seaton is a worrying end to the year. It is reported that client money is unaffected and let's hope it is not as bad as it sounds, but it confirms that bad news can hit the big companies as well.
Could do better
Whether its 15 working days to co-sign a cheque or imposing arbitrary provider rules on top of actual legislation it is clear a number of providers are not endearing themselves to the adviser community. It would be too easy just to poke fun rather we feel more worthwhile to point out the "5 Golden Things "a SIPP provider should do for you:
- 1. Fees - The client should only pay for the services they use
- 2. Service - Standards quoted (we offer same day admin for most routine matters) and a dedicated account manager.
- 3. Online - Current SIPP valuations available to you the adviser.
- 4. Flexibility - All investments that are not deemed taxable property should be allowable in the SIPP.
- 5. Extras - Remember the adviser should be at the centre of the service and not vice versa. So transfer payments, investment transaction should be chased and as much of the grunt work taken on by the provider and not IFA.
When the Xmas hangovers have cleared perhaps think of giving your provider the 5 Golden Things test because 2010 could and should be better than your experiences in 2009.