Only a third of consumers would be willing to pay anything for an hour of professional advice, according to a new survey by KPMG.
Even more worryingly for advisers switching to a fee-based model post RDR, the research found of those consumers willing to pay, around half would not consider a sum over £50.
Setting out the challenges faced by advisers post-RDR, the report reveals a meagre 1% would be ready to pay £200, while only 22% would pay for an in-depth annual review of their finances.
However, despite the fee issue potentially driving consumers and advisers apart, the report also establishes 50% would trust IFAs the most for financial advice, significantly more than banks or insurance companies.
Fiona Fry, partner in KPMG's RDR practice, believes the research once again underlines the importance of preparing properly for the huge changes about to impact the industry.
She says: "Many consumers don't use or understand financial advice and are largely unwilling to pay for it. The challenges here are obvious and stark.
"Whilst wealthier individuals with complex financial needs are likely to continue to need and be willing to pay for advice, how mass market consumers will be served is far from clear."
David Ingram, technical director of support services provider threesixty, believes the research reinforces the weaknesses of RDR.
"The research emphasises the fact that the FSA have got it all wrong and consumers don't want to pay to have to see an adviser," he says.
"Regulatory change is widening the gap between those who can pay for advice and those who can not.
"Certainly there is no moral obligation to encourage advisers to reach out to those unwilling to pay although we hope pro bono work will help to fill the gap."
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