Answered by Lee Goggin
The wealth management industry has undoubtedly seen a lot of M&A in recent years, and we can certainly appreciate why this might make clients feel unsettled.
If you hear your wealth manager is changing hands it can bring up fears that you will lose the adviser you are used to working with, that costs might rise or that service standards will slip. Those things may well happen, but then again, they might not. You might find that the sale of your wealth manager ends up being a positive. It may be that ownership by another firm expands the technological capabilities or investment expertise on offer, for instance.
The most important thing is to keep a close eye on developments. Of course, you should be kept fully informed about any changes to how you will be serviced, particularly if an office is to be shut or advisers will have to leave the firm. Clearly, any changes to charging structures will also need to be carefully looked at.
Ongoing evaluations are good practice anyway. We always advise that investors regularly review their wealth management provider against peers to make sure they are getting the best value, investment performance and service possible. Being proactive is key.
While findaWEALTHMANAGER.com offers newcomers an effective way to fast-track through the industry, helping existing clients find better-matched relationships is also a very large part of what we do.
A merger or acquisition doesn’t necessarily signal a deterioration of service, but they can be an excellent opportunity to see if you could be getting a better deal elsewhere. As our guide to changing wealth manager makes clear, it’s actually far easier to swap provider than people tend to think, so there’s no reason to just coast along with an unsatisfactory relationship.
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