FAQs

Here you'll find the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions that people approach us with.

Question 1

What do you charge for your advice and how do I pay for the charges?

At PFM Associates our charges are clear and transparent. Your first meeting with us will always be at our expense. We think this is a great way for us to really understand your objectives and for you to see how we will be able to help.
Our initial charge is broken down into two parts, the Advice component and the Implementation component. These are clearly explained and agreed before we undertake any work for you.

The way our clients decide to pay the charges varies. They can instruct the company selected to administer their investments and pensions to pay us from the investments they hold, or arrange to pay us directly. Your financial planner will talk through all of the options with you during your initial meeting.

For more information, please visit the ‘How we work together’ page.

Question 2

How can you assure me that my investments are secure?

If you make an investment or set up a pension following advice from us, your investment will be administered by a large firm such as Standard Life or Old Mutual Wealth who are regulated and authorised to hold your money via a ‘platform’.

The next important protection that you have is the research that we undertake before recommending any investments to you. Part of our stringent due diligence process is to ensure that anything we recommend is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

Question 3

Why should I pay for your advice instead of managing my own money?

Your fees cover our knowledge, experience, active research, ongoing monitoring and being there to help you make the right plans, at the right time.

Question 4

What qualifications do your planners have and what do they mean?

All our financial planners have passed a number of exams in order to achieve the Diploma in Financial Planning awarded by the Chartered Insurance Institute. Many of the team have gone on to improve their knowledge through more advanced qualifications and have achieved the Advanced Diploma in Financial Planning which, coupled with many years’ experience has led to them being awarded Chartered status. A Chartered Financial Planner has demonstrated their technical expertise and experience which puts them at the forefront of the industry.

On an annual basis, all of our financial planners are required to obtain a Statement of Professional Standing from either the Chartered Insurance Institute or the Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment that requires them to meet requirements for ongoing professional development and adherence to a Code of Ethics. These are available from our team member pages.

Question 5

How do you decide how my money is invested?

Our initial meetings always include an in-depth discussion about your objectives and how much risk you need to take in order to meet your objectives. We also look at how much risk you want to take and, importantly, how much you can afford to take in order to get to where you want to be.

This will involve the completion of a Risk Assessment Questionnaire which we use as a tool in our discussions with you to help understand your personal view. Once we understand and agree this with you we can consider the investment options that will help you reach your objective whilst taking the minimal level of risk required or, aim to maximise your returns for the risk you are prepared to take – this is always personal to you and your goals.
The investment options we consider almost always focus on the benefits of diversification, having a broad spread of holdings that help to smooth out some of the sharper movements that we often see in the financial markets and help to provide more reliable returns over the long term.

The PFM Investment Committee are responsible for researching and selecting these funds which are then combined into a range of models that aim to match different risk profiles.

Question 6

Can you provide other services other than investments, such as life assurance and mortgage advice?

As an independent financial planning firm, we are able to advise on all areas of financial advice, including life assurance and other ways to ensure that you and your family are protected in the event of illness or death. We also advise on mortgages, whether you are looking to buy your first home to live in or as a landlord looking to purchase another Buy to Let.

Financial planning doesn’t just cover these areas; it’s also incredibly important to think about how you want to retire and how you are going to be able to reach that goal and also how you would like your affairs managed and passed on when you die. Our financial planners can advise in all of these areas.

Please note: Your property may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage. Most forms of Buy-to-Let mortgage are not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

Question 7

If I want to invest ethically, do you provide this as an option?

We have a range of investment portfolios that focus on holding investment funds that invest in areas that provide solutions to social and environmental challenges – they invest with a purpose.

Question 8

What makes PFM Associates different to other financial advisory firms?

We are a long-established firm founded on delivering a very personal service and long-term relationships. For more information, please visit the ‘Why work with us?’ page .

What our clients say

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Dr P Dickins & Mr X Talati

My husband and I have been advised by Isabel Sinclair regarding our financial affairs for the past 20 years. We have always had confidence in her advice which she has carefully tailored to our needs individually. She is conscientious in gathering our views before advising us about what she thinks will suit us. She is always helpful and happy to advise on all aspects of finance and spending. We would not hesitate to recommend PFM Associates.

Poole Clients since 1999

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George Bailey

I have known Alan since 1997. I trust him and I am very happy with the advice and service provided. I am confident in all the advice and would recommend anyone to Alan and PFM Associates Ltd.

Newport A client since 2011

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John Lawrence

I have known Alan Grout for 8 years. Alan is a good listener and always responds with sound advice. He reacts quickly to any query. I would always be happy to recommend Alan to others.

Gloucestershire A client since 2012

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Mr & Mrs Farr

We’ve been with PFM Associates for over 15 years and known Alan for 10 years. We never question the advice he gives us. Alan always gets back to us to resolve any queries or concerns that we may have. We would recommend Alan and PFM Associates.

New Milton Clients since 2005

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Mrs Barry

I have known David Venditti for over 8 years. I have absolute confidence in his ability as an adviser. I trust David implicitly and he has a great ‘bedside manner’. David explains everything to me thoroughly so I can fully understand. I would be happy to refer David.

Southampton A client since 2012

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Mrs Mead

David Venditti is very welcoming and friendly when I contact him. David is very knowledgeable, and I have total confidence in his abilities and he always makes sure we fully understand everything. I could not wish for a better Financial Adviser and would recommend him to anyone as I totally trust his advice and guidance.

Fordingbridge A client since 2012

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Mr Harper

I have known David Venditti for six years and he is reliable, trustworthy and gives good advice. I would be happy to recommend him to anyone who needs financial advice.

Ringwood A client since 2014

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Mr & Mrs Whatman

We have known John Skipton for six years. John Skipton is always patient and gives good sound advice. I would be happy to recommend John Skipton and PFM Associates to anyone should the situation arise.

Christchurch Clients since 2014

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Mr Laney

John has a very strong ability to explain complex financial matters in a simple and concise way, without watering down the key points of detail. This is important when I am making decisions about my financial future.

Bournemouth A client since 2015

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Mrs Razey

Thomas Wilson is always professional and the advice has been good. It has been reassuring to find an adviser that I could fully trust. PFM have always been open and honest with me and my family.

Dorset A client since 2016

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Mrs Drysdale

PFM have been our Independent Financial Advisers for many years. We like the fact that each adviser has their own area of expertise, so clients have access to a wide knowledge base. We feel confident that our money is well-managed and highly recommend PFM.

Dorset A client since 1998

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Mr R C Brady

I was introduced to PFM by a family member about eight years ago, in order to obtain personal pension planning advice. I have been very pleased with the advice given by my adviser, for my pensions and for wealth management. I have no hesitation in recommending PFM.

Bristol A client since 2012

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Ann Brown

We have been clients of PFM Associates, specifically Isabel Sinclair, for many years and ran a very small family general practice. We found the advice over the years in practice and in our retirement planning very sound. Recently life events have changed the emphasis of our future planning and again we have had advice that we feel is relevant and helpful.

Dorset A client since 1996

Ready to start your journey?

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