Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What does a Trusted Financial Adviser do?
A ‘Trusted Financial Adviser’ will always put your best interests first. The most important first step is to gain an understanding of your values around money, and then clarify what your most important goals are. Then we move on to where you are financially and start to chart where you need to be. We will collaborate with your other professionals, i.e., accountants, and solicitors when required to ensure the best outcome for you.
What should I look for in a Financial Adviser?
Look at their professional qualifications and how long they have been advising clients. Also in our view, someone who is not aligned with any product providers including banks or insurance companies. Do your homework; you want your Financial Adviser to be your personal fiduciary and someone you are comfortable with.
Why do I need a financial plan?
Imagine getting into a taxi and telling the driver you don’t know your destination and to just drive. There is a good chance you will not end up where you really wanted to be. Having a comprehensive financial plan is a roadmap directing your decisions around what is important to you about money. A robust financial plan will clearly identify your most important goals and objectives, and then provide a number of strategies to achieve them. Some practical aspects may cover cashflow management, debt management and reduction, investment and superannuation advice, asset allocation, personal insurance protection and estate planning issues.
How much do you charge and what do I get?
Alman Partners charges our clients a fee for service paid directly by you. There are three components to our fees:
Initial Meeting fees are generally $330, however, if you have been referred to our firm by one of our clients or professional associates this meeting will be complimentary.
Construction & Implementation of Statement of Advice. Should you decide to engage us to provide you with a comprehensive Statement of Advice, we will charge you a one-off fee which will be quoted to you in a detailed Client Service Agreement document.
Lastly, our clients generally retain our firm to provide ongoing review and advice over many years. This fee will be disclosed in our Client Service Agreement so you can make an informed decision.
If you would like more information, please refer to our Financial Services Guide.
Why do I have to provide so much personal information?
To provide you with comprehensive and effective advice, we need to first understand your current financial position. You can choose to provide this information to us before our first meeting, or you can attend a Discovery Meeting and get to know us before deciding to provide personal information. This will most likely require a second meeting so we can put together some concept ideas to outline the value we believe we may be able to provide. This second meeting is generally complimentary.
Am I obligated to continue with Alman Partners after the first meeting?
No. Hopefully you will leave this meeting more knowledgeable and with a clearer picture of what actions you must take to achieve your own ‘True Wealth.’
After the plan has been implemented, what happens next?
Depending on the complexity of your situation, we will review your portfolio once or twice a year. At our review meetings, we will discuss your overall financial strategy, performance and product costs, all while ensuring we are targeting towards your goals. Should you have any queries or changes that occur to your situation outside of your review meetings, your Adviser is always available to discuss this with you.
When do I need to update my Financial Adviser?
It is always best to inform your Financial Adviser of any major changes to your financial situation. This way we can ensure that your financial plan is on track and you are in the best position to achieve your goals. It is best to update your Adviser when you have a change in employment, receive a large pay increase, receive an inheritance or pay out a loan.
Do I need to come into the office for meetings?
We understand that making a visit to our office is not always possible, especially when you do not live in Mackay or Brisbane. We cater for all meeting types – face to face, phone only (with any relevant documents posted or emailed) and web-based meetings.
Do you have parking facilities?
Yes. There is plenty of parking available in our off-street car park accessible from 8 Brisbane Street, Mackay. We also have 3 car parks available next to our entrance for those with mobility issues.
For our Brisbane clients, we will arrange for a secure car park for your appointment in a nearby parking lot.
What is a Provisional Financial Adviser?
A Provisional Relevant Provider or Provisional Financial Adviser (PFA) is a special type of relevant provider defined by s910A of the Corporations Act 2001 who can only provide personal advice to retail clients on a supervised basis during their Professional Year.
To become a PFA a person must first meet certain education standards before then undertaking a Professional Year. Providing a PFA has completed and passed their Financial Adviser exam and is registered on ASIC’s Financial Adviser Register (FAR), they can begin conducting client meetings without a supervisor present, from Quarter 3 of their Professional Year.
What is a Professional Year?
The Professional Year is one full time year (1,600 hours) of training and development in a person’s journey to becoming a Financial Adviser. At least 100 of these hours must be structured training. The remaining hours are made up of ‘on the job’ learning, attending meetings and reviewing, assessing or producing client related documentation. The Provisional Financial Adviser (PFA) has at least one (it can be multiple) supervisor/s assigned to oversee their Professional Year, which they can begin in the final stages of completing their approved degree. Only once they have passed the Financial Adviser exam and are authorised by their AFSL can they call themselves a Provisional Financial Adviser.
How can I be sure of the quality of advice?
All of our Advisers are subject to supervision and monitoring under our Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL), but the supervision of a Provisional Financial Adviser (PFA) is much more prescribed. The assigned Adviser supervisor must have the relevant qualifications and at least two years of experience as a full Financial Adviser. The Financial Adviser providing supervision must work closely with the PFA and will ensure thorough record-keeping and compliance is maintained. Any financial advice provided by a PFA will be thoroughly reviewed by the supervising Adviser before being provided to a client.
Who do I contact if I have concerns?
Speak with the Provisional Financial Adviser (PFA) in the first instance, addressing any concerns. Further to this you can direct any concerns to the supervising Adviser.
Disclaimers will accompany any advice provided by a Provisional Financial Adviser (PFA).
Warning – personal advice to a retail client
Any personal financial product advice provided by Provisional Financial Adviser (ARN: xxx), as a provisional financial adviser, whether orally or in writing, is taken to have been provided by a supervisor of the provisional financial adviser: Stephen Lowry – ARN: 001001393; Paul Shepherd – ARN: 001001430; Teneale Laister – ARN: 001001427; Niyati Khanna – ARN: 001250721; Jason Kirk – ARN: 000275916; Kelsey Dent – ARN: 001271571; Katrina Dhu – ARN: 001008822; Veronika Holubova – ARN: 001261567. This provisional financial adviser is undertaking work and training in accordance with subsection 921B(4) of the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth), and these supervisors are responsible for any personal advice provided by the provisional financial adviser.