Choosing a financial planner or adviser is not a decision that should be taken lightly, as this will most likely be the start of a long term relationship that will impact the financial future of you and your family.

Should you go with the recommendation from a family member, friend or colleague? Should you choose one of the ‘big names’ in the industry? Or should you choose the small independent local firm?

Whichever approach you take, there are certain questions and areas you should consider, to enable you to make the decision that is right for you.

It is important to find an adviser that you (and your partner) feel comfortable with – they need to take the time to understand your situation and your needs. It is worth asking if they have experience of helping people with similar circumstances and needs to yours.

Try to find someone that can deliver sound financial planning and advice in straightforward, simple language; someone that ensures you fully understand the approach being outlined and the decisions being taken.

How transparent are they with their fees, and for the requirements you have, do they represent value for money in comparison to other firms?

You should also consider how they would work with any other advisers that you may have, such as your lawyer, or accountant.

If you think you might need a specialist in a specific area, such as say tax advice, or trust planning, how are they placed to support you with this?

Financial planning is a detailed and comprehensive process; it is a crowded marketplace with many firms competing to advise individuals and families on what approach they should take with their finances.

Making the right choice of adviser will most likely lead to a relationship you value, that works for both parties and provides you with confidence in your financial future.

Making the wrong choice…well let’s not go there, instead be sure to take time to ask plenty of questions so that you can find the right firm and right adviser that are best suited to meet your needs.