Yes, most banks do have financial advisers available for customers. These will not necessarily be the same staff that work at the counter or give mortgage advice and it’s likely that an appointment will be required. There may also be a charge to use their services.
No major UK bank will have a Financial Adviser on hand at all their branches, there is simply not enough demand for their services. A larger, flagship, branch may have advisers permanently on location with medium-sized branches having one come in at certain times of the week. Either way, it will likely be necessary to book and wait for an appointment to become available and this may involve traveling to a branch that is not your usual one.
Some banks will refer you to external advisers (who may be IFAs), who are likely to charge.
Even if your bank has a financial adviser for you to use, it may not be the best choice for you. Getting the right financial advice is important, and not every adviser is able to give the same advice, with some advisers (like most bank ones) having restrictions in place on what they are able to do. Understanding the pros and cons of what a bank adviser is able to do is important to make the right choice.
Whilst your bank may have a Financial Adviser that you can use, and which may even be free to use, there are a few points to consider.
It’s important to remeber that the advisers employed by the bank will likely be Restricted advisers. That means that they are only able to offer products sold by the bank and cannot look elsewhere.
If using an Independent Financial Adviser then the advisor must look across all the products and solutions from across the market to find the best combination and fit for you.
So whilst a bank adviser may recommend the most suitable product from their range, it is not necessarily the best from all the banks or other providers.
Whilst your bank may not have an adviser in every branch, it is likely that they can arrange an appointment for one to talk to you. This may be complimentary, or you may have to pay.
Whether it is free or not, for something as important as your finances and your future, it’s important to find the right person to talk to. Making the right financial choices, especially when it comes to pensions, investments and saving for your retirement, are some of the most important ones you will make in your life and can make a huge difference to your future. Making sure you get the best advice is key.
Many IFAs (such as ourselves) offer a free initial consultation to discuss your situation and what steps you may want to take. This can be a good way to find out what Independent financial advice can offer and you may find it helps answer many of the questions you may have. Please get in touch if you would like to discuss anything further.