Dave Millner

The real benefits of financial planning

“There’s a very clear picture in my head about what I need to do, how I need to do it and why.”

Dave: “The reason why I contacted TFP at the start was I’d left a bank; so I’ve been in financial services for 20 odd years, I was moving to a smaller company which didn’t have all the corporate benefits that I got used to. I already knew Ian Jones and Ian had made some suggestions. We managed to invest the monies that I got and he gave me some pretty good advice about what sort of things I should put in place now that I was no longer working within a corporate organisation.

Ian said to me, “I really think you need to have critical illness cover” and I was like “Really?”. He said, “I think it’s very sensible for you to have that. Remember, you’re not working in a big corporate.” I’d joined an organisation of 20 people at that time and the cover was quite expensive, but he talked me through as to what it would provide; it just gives you that comfort.

So, wheel forward to 2016, and guess what? I get diagnosed with prostate cancer. Suddenly, having that forethought that Ian had put into my head has obviously been a sensible move because it gave you that financial security that if I wasn’t going to go back to work, which I have done, then at least there was some security behind me.

So, if I look at the financial planning looking to the future, I think the way Ian has done it has very carefully, over a period of years (it’s nearly a 20-year relationship now) enabled me to think much clearer about pension, insurance, bonds, policy, investments, tax implications.

So I think all of those things he’s asked me the questions I probably would still ask myself if was in a financial services organisation, but there’s so much distance between when I used to do that and where I am now; I can’t keep up with the speed of the market and what’s going on. I think it’s really around clarity and focus that’s provided to me; the ability to ask those awkward questions you probably don’t want to ask, but you need to consider them.

When I sit now with Ian, there’s a plan that says “this is what you’ve invested over the many years, this is where you’re at, these are the sorts of things that you can now afford, this is where the tipping point is and where we may need to start to release pension funds etc”. There’s a very clear picture in my head about what I need to do, how I need to do it and why.

If I look at the relationship that’s been built with Ian and Casey and the rest of the team, it doesn’t matter whether I’m talking to Ian or whether I’m talking to one of the support team. Everybody knows us, everybody is able to help us and everybody is very responsive in giving us the information we need, sorting out a problem or whatever it may be.

If I look at how TFP has adapted with my lifestyle, I think obviously I was centred around Maldon for a number of years, then I moved into London and I’ve moved now to St Albans in Hertfordshire. It doesn’t make any difference where I am; I’m still getting that same quality of conversation, the same quality of advice and the ability to meet where one of the team will come to us, or we will go to them or meet in London, so there’s no barrier by geographically being in a different area.

I would absolutely recommend them because that expertise and relationship is very important; particularly when you’re dealing with such complicated issues that you really need to get your head around. You need somebody to challenge your thinking. I would definitely recommend them.”

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