Is it time to simplify your financial life?

Stephen Metcalf
Financial Planning
Stephen Metcalf, director of financial planning

Consolidating your investments with one adviser or financial manager brings a number of advantages, says Stephen Metcalf of Lovewell Blake Financial Planning.

Stephen Metcalf, director of financial planning

Many investors understand the concept of diversification to spread their risks – the well-known advice of not having all your eggs in one basket.  But there is a common misconception that this means having several investment accounts at different institutions or with multiple financial advisers.

In truth, diversification is about holding a variety of investments in your portfolio, and not about where you hold them.  There are several advantages to consolidating those investments into fewer plans, and dealing with just one financial adviser.

This is particularly true if your tax affairs and/or your business accountancy needs are looked after by the same firm that handles your financial planning.  

Dealing with just one firm can allow for better co-ordination and efficiency in your financial life, and it will allow your financial adviser to have a full picture of your overall financial affairs.

So what are the advantages of consolidating your investments into one place?

1. A Comprehensive View

By having all of your investments in one account, your adviser can help you gain a clear and holistic view of your financial portfolio.  It’s like stepping back to see the whole canvas rather than focussing on the individual brush strokes.  This allows you and your adviser to assess your overall financial health, track performance and make informed decisions.

2. Simplified Management

Managing multiple accounts can be cumbersome, with different login details and having to navigate separate platforms from various providers.  Consolidation streamlines the process, with a single login, one provider to interact with, and reduced administrative hassle.

3. Increased Control

When we need to make adjustments to your investments (such as buying or selling), having everything in one place simplifies the process.  That means that your adviser can adjust your portfolio allocation, rebalance, and respond to market opportunities quickly and simply.

4. Enhanced Clarity

Knowing where your money is invested is crucial.  By everything being in one place, both you and your adviser can easily see exactly what assets you hold, how they are allocated, how they are performing, and how they align with your personal financial goals.  Knowing all of this enables you to plan with much greater clarity (for example by knowing how much retirement income you can expect), and importantly, helping you plan effectively.

5. Potentially Reduced Costs

Having just one provider can lead to lower overall fees, by avoiding duplicating charges such as transaction fees, management fees and administrative costs across various accounts.

6. Simplified Recordkeeping

Instead of juggling statements from various sources, consolidation gives you a single account to review.  Whether you are planning for retirement or monitoring your investments, simplified recordkeeping is a significant advantage.

7. Flexibility

Some older providers may limit your options for taking income from your pension.  Consolidating into a flexible account allows you to choose from all the retirement options.

8. Accurate Asset Allocation

Asset allocation is where you, along with your adviser, consider your investment goals, time horizon and tolerance for risk to build your portfolio.  It is almost impossible to do this effectively if you are juggling accounts across different financial advisers.  Consolidation can also ensure your portfolio remains diversified and avoids overlapping similar investments.

9. Tax Efficiency

An important - and often overlooked - factor in successful investing is tax efficiency.  How you allocate your investments (for example in retirement versus non-retirement accounts) can lower the amount of tax you pay.  Having your accounts in one place makes this kind of tax planning much easier, and if your financial adviser’s firm also looks after your tax affairs, they will have a much fuller picture.

Consolidating your investments offers convenience, control, and clarity.  Whether you choose a self-directed account or seek professional advice, bringing your investments under one roof is a step towards financial empowerment.

If you would like to know more about consolidating your investments, or are ready to bring them together with one adviser


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