Around 57% of the UK population has never sought advice from a financial adviser with a fifth saying it is too expensive, according to new research from Zurich.
The study, undertaken to understand how UK consumers are planning for their financial futures, also found around one in eight seek advice from family and friends.
Unsurprisingly, 84% of 18 to 24 year olds say they have never sought financial advice and 64% of 25 to 34 year olds. This figure then levels out to around 50% for those aged 35 and over. Worryingly, the levels do not decrease after this point suggesting that financial wisdom does not always come with age, Zurich says.
Marriage and family life also appear to be a deciding factor in whether to seek financial advice with 48% of those married or co-habiting with children admitting they have never sought financial advice. However, this is the very group that most needs advice, as individuals must plan for their dependant’s financial future, as well as their own, Zurich warns. This figure rises to 53% of those co-habiting without children.
A huge seven out of ten (70%) single people surveyed say they have never sought advice, rising again to 73% of those who are in a relationship but live alone.
There were also significant regional variations, with six in ten Londoners admitting that they have not sought advice. This rose to 65% in the Midlands, followed closely by the West Country on 63%. The figures fell to 49% in Wales, followed closely by 47% in North Scotland.
Of those who say they have never sought advice, half claim it is because they do not think they have enough disposable income to make seeing an adviser worthwhile, rising to more than two thirds (69%) in North Scotland, and (62%) in the West Country.
Overall, a fifth (20%) surveyed it is just too expensive to have an adviser. The second most cited reason is that individuals contacted their banks (16%) when they needed financial advice, and almost one in eight (12%) rely on friends and family.
Tony Solomon, director, Life Marketing, Zurich, says: “The sheer number of people walking blind into their financial decision-making presents a disturbing trend in society and an alarming picture for the future. It is troubling to know that more than half of the population has never sought financial advice at a time when they most need it."IFAonline
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