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FAQ's

Why First Wealth?

We’ve built a reputation as one of the best financial planners in the UK. Over 450 families trust us to help them with their financial planning, and to manage assets of over £350 million.

As a certified B Corporation, we’re driven by doing good, not just making a profit. We balance business growth with our impact on the environment, our team, our clients, our governance and our community.

We’re an FCA regulated business with coveted chartered financial planner status, and we’ve been named a top-three financial planning firm in three of the past five years.

We’re proud of who we are and what we do – but don’t just take our word for it. Check out our Google Reviews and Vouched For reviews to see what our clients say.

When it comes to your finances, you want a team who’ve got your back. People who care about you and the things you want from life, who can help you take control of your money and achieve your goals.

We’re not just financial experts – we’re all-round nice people with a fresh approach to financial services. We’re driven by trust, confidence, and a desire to make the world a better place. We don’t believe in the hard sell: that’s why we offer a FREE, no-strings initial meeting. We’ll even build your financial plan for you. You only pay when you’re completely happy with our work.

Our fees are also totally transparent, so you’ll always know exactly what you’re paying us for. Our client stories show some of the ways in which we build trust with our clients.

Our Financial Planning process helps you identify your goals and create a clear plan to achieve them, with none of the stress traditionally associated with money management. Our Wealth Management service gives you access to an evidence-based investment approach that’s been proven to beat most competitors over time. And our Financial Coaching helps you stay on track, avoid expensive mistakes and make sound decisions.

Already have a financial adviser? No problem. We’re always happy to chat through your strategy and provide a second opinion. Book a FREE 30-minute video call to find out more.

Our core values are excellence, ambition, respect, happy people and helping others. Our service is designed to fit around your values. As our relationship develops, so will our understanding of who you are and what matters to you.

• We’re a certified B Corp – a business established to do good, not just make a profit. We assess our impact on the environment, the impact we have on our clients’ lives, the way in which we engage with our community, the way we govern ourselves and the way in which we look after our team

• We aim to be net zero by 2030. We plant trees in the ComuniTree Carbon Programme in Nicaragua to offset our carbon emissions, and plant 30 new trees to celebrate each new client that joins us

• We’re educating the next generation with our Let’s Talk About Money brand, and run regular live events and webinars designed to help young people become money smart, and to avoid debt and expensive mistakes

• Our aim is to be one of the most progressive employers in the UK, with a diverse and inclusive culture and a healthy work–life balance for our team.

First Wealth was set up in 2009, directly after the UK financial crisis. Our founders, Anthony Villis and Robert Caplan, decided there had to be a better way of doing things, and both left their positions in the City to establish First Wealth.

Since then, our team has grown to be 18 people strong and we look after assets of around £320 million for 450 families.

High quality financial advice comes with both tangible and emotional benefits. Your detailed financial plan covers all aspects of your planning. This normally includes tangible and quantifiable benefits such as tax savings, reduced investment fees, the identification of potential financial traps and how to avoid them, and the potential of increased returns on both cash and investments. The plan provides extreme clarity, peace of mind and confidence for the future.

Our team is available Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm to take calls and answer emails. We’re a friendly, helpful team of real people, not an impersonal call centre. Our phone lines are answered by a person, not an automated system, and you’ll never have to wait days for a response to your email. 

All our clients are allocated a financial planning team to support your financial planner, so there’s always someone you can talk to when you need to.

Do I need advice?

Many people find major life events leave them with burning financial questions. Perhaps they’re setting up a business, buying a new home, facing the death of a loved one, celebrating the birth of a child, or selling a business.

Having a clear financial strategy and plan for the future reduces anxiety, increases your chances of financial success and gives you confidence and peace of mind. Any time is a good time to start planning for your future. Contact us today to find out how we can help.

While a small number of people have the expertise, technical knowledge and investment composure required to do this alone, most benefit from working with a financial planner. 

As well as producing a comprehensive financial plan that’ll keep you on track to your goals, they’ll help you invest your money smartly and tackle any blind spots you have around money. They’ll act as a sounding board for any important financial decisions and provide honest feedback and support when you need it most.

Many of our clients had an adviser when they first approached us. We’re always happy to provide a second opinion on your financial plan or portfolio – or simply to chat to see how we can help. We’re a friendly, knowledgeable bunch, so do pick up the phone.

Many advisers still don’t provide a comprehensive financial planning service or detailed cashflow modelling – two things that are crucial when it comes to helping you achieve your goals in life. Instead of truly listening to what you need they focus on selling you financial products, as that’s how they make their money. Get in touch to discover the First Wealth difference for yourself.

What is the advice process?

Our relationship is based on a simple three-step plan. In a nutshell, it starts with a quick phone call or video call from which we’ll arrange a free, no-strings initial meeting. This is our chance to get to know one another and outline the ways in which we can help you achieve your financial goals.

If you decide to work with us, we’ll create a comprehensive financial plan based on your goals, responsibilities, investments, protection, tax planning, wills and powers of attorney. It’s a route map for success and a clear strategy for the future.

Once you’re up and running, an annual meeting will update your position, cashflow model, and progress, and we’re always on hand to provide support and to answer your questions.

Lots. Nothing happens without your say so.

The initial financial planning process is all about collaboration. We work with you to understand where you are, what you want from life, what your responsibilities are and any concerns you have about your current set up. Your goals and priorities are unique to you.

Once we’ve done our initial research, we’ll present your financial plan either in person or on a video call. Your plan will outline our suggestions on how to achieve your goals and recommend any financial products that will help you get there.

There’s no pressure to follow our advice, and we encourage you to take your time to consider our recommendations before making any decisions. If you decide you’d like our help to implement the advice in your plan we’ll welcome you as a full client of First Wealth (and plant 30 trees on your behalf).

As much or as little as you like. 

Any new investment we make on your behalf needs to be approved by you. Some clients want to understand the finer detail of all their investments; others prefer us to select on their behalf. Everyone is different, and you choose what works for you. 

Our evidence-based investments are run on a discretionary basis. This means we can rebalance your portfolio every six months to ensure the mix of equity and bonds remains in line with your risk profile. It also allows us to make changes as and when required – to access new funds with lower charges, for example.

We recommend an evidence-based investment approach for our clients, based on academic research and real data. 

Our approach involves buying stocks in the biggest companies, and bonds provided by the government, using funds that track indices such as the FTSE 100 or S&P 500. The level of risk involved in your investment will reflect your risk profile. 

We also offer an environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) version of our portfolio, which solely invests in companies that have a positive impact on the world. 

You choose whether you want to invest in pure evidence-based, or our ESG portfolio, and can review this each year as part of your annual meeting.

Of course! You can read about our financial planners on our team page.  

All our planners are highly skilled and experienced. We aim to match new clients to the right financial planner based on personality and area of expertise – such as setting up or exiting a business, approaching retirement or going through a divorce. 

Whoever you decide to work with, they will always be your primary contact at First Wealth.

We’ve built our financial planning service around a simple three-step process that results in a detailed financial plan that’s designed to keep you on track to achieving your life goals. We charge a fixed fee for this plan. Because we’re paid for our time, we don’t need to earn commission for selling you a product or plan. 

Of course, investments and financial products play a central part in many clients’ financial plans. You may have these already or you may need new ones to help you reach your goals. 

Your financial plan clearly explains the reasons for any products we recommend and any fees we earn as a result. You’re under no obligation to follow our advice, and we recommend you take your time to consider any decision before taking action.

Our financial planning process is designed to help you identify any short-term expenditure you may require and we always set aside money that’s easy to access in an emergency. 

But plans can change, and sometimes life takes a course you couldn’t have anticipated.  

That’s why we usually invest most of our clients’ money in liquid assets that can be accessed within seven working days. 

If you need funds in a hurry, just let us know how much you need and by when and we’ll work out the quickest, most tax-efficient way to get your money to you.

What protection do I have?

We don’t hold client money (other than in settlement of our fees) so there’s no trading risk associated with working with First Wealth. 

Investing money with any company carries a degree of risk. Valuations fluctuate daily, and you may get back less than you invested. Your financial planner will help you complete our comprehensive risk profiling questionnaire – a vital factor in deciding which financial products are right for you. 

Any money you invest is held in a nominee account. This protects your assets from day-to-day trading activities and the unlikely event of the investment company failing. Your investment is also covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (www.fscs.org.uk). 

The UK financial services industry provides significant protection to consumers and First Wealth is highly regulated for your peace of mind. 

  • As a Chartered financial planning firm, we’re required to pass an annual assessment that demonstrates the highest standard of practice and code of ethics.
  • We’re a member of Best Practice IFA Group (www.bestpractice.co.uk) the UK’s only chartered network. Best Practice act as an independent compliance function, making sure our advice and service meet exceptional standards. 
  • Our advice is covered by comprehensive professional indemnity insurance. 
  • The Financial Services Ombudsman Service (FOS) is available to help with individual complaints that individuals and financial services businesses aren’t able to resolve themselves. To contact the FOS, please visit www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk.
  • If our advice is ever found to have been inappropriate, and we can’t settle the claim, you can contact the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (www.fscs.org.uk).

Our initial financial planning process comes with a guarantee: if you’re not 100% happy you don’t pay us a penny. We’re confident that our advice will add significant value to your situation, so we’re happy to back our work in this way. 

As an existing client, if you’re ever unhappy with anything we do, please let us know so that we can resolve it quickly. If that doesn’t work for you, you can register a complaint through our network, Best Practice IFA Group. 

If you’re still not satisfied, you can contact the Financial Ombudsman Service (www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk).

Your data is incredibly important, and we have robust systems in place to manage your personal information. Our internal systems are covered by the latest technology security systems, including end-to-end encryption and multifactor authentication. 

For further peace of mind, we carry out an annual verification process under the UK government’s Cyber Essential scheme (www.ncsc.gov.uk/cyberessentials/overview) to make sure our systems and data protection are as robust as they can be.

How do you charge?

Our initial conversations and first meeting are on us. To build a full financial plan, we charge a fixed fee of between £2,000 and £5,000, depending on complexity. If you’re not completely satisfied with your plan, you won’t pay us a penny. 

If you invest with us, we charge an initial fee of 1%. If you ask us to manage money on an ongoing basis, we charge 1% per year. Our minimum annual fee is £1,500. 

Our fees are representative of the experience, expertise and service levels you would expect from a serious business. You’ll find full details – including a fee calculator – here

Many financial advisers don’t charge a fee for their financial plan. Instead, they rely on selling you a product to get paid. Beware the adviser who tells you their advice is free: it isn’t. 

We’re on a mission to show you a better way. Building a comprehensive financial plan takes time. Our fees represent the time and expertise that goes into the planning process. Our plan is an independent review of every aspect of your position, and the fact that we’re not relying on selling products to get paid means we can be truly impartial. 

In most cases, our fees are more than covered by a reduction in your ongoing investment fees, smart tax planning, or fixing unnecessary leaks in your existing financial provision. 

For the cost of a family holiday, you can have complete clarity about your financial position and peace of mind for the future. We believe it’s a great investment, and our clients agree. Read what they have to say about working with First Wealth.

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