IFAs believe those with pension pots of less than £65,000 are unlikely to pay upfront for advice, according to research by Axa.
Axa Life Europe's quarterly poll of 244 IFAs found the majority of advisers believe clients with pension pots of £65,600 or less are unlikely to pay upfront for advice on their retirement income options following the implementation of the Retail Distribution Review (RDR).
About 22% of IFAs thought pension pots would need to be as high as £100,000 or more before people would pay for advice - indicating that pensions could be among the products which experience a potential shortfall in advice post-RDR.
Simon Smallcombe, head of guaranteed distribution for AXA in the UK, said: "While there is concern among the IFA community that those on lower incomes won't pay for advice and that the less wealthy will be disadvantaged by RDR, there was always a cost for advice so in reality these changes shouldn't disadvantage consumers."
The RDR has allowed some providers, including Axa, to lower the charges on their products, he said.
"Separating adviser charges from product charges has allowed us to lower the costs of our range of unit-linked guaranteed products and offer the highest income rates on the market," Smallcombe added.
He said decisions relating to how and when savers take retirement income are crucial and warrant professional advice.
"For the majority of people it will make sense to discuss a full range of options with a professional adviser, who can share broader thoughts regarding financial planning for retirement and whether it makes sense to take a tax free lump sum from your pension at retirement.
"Everyone approaching retirement with a defined contribution pension pot needs access to trustworthy advice on how to maximise their income in retirement."
Those with smaller pension pots could be in even greater need of advice, he said, as the difference between the maximum income they could get and the income from their default provider could make all the difference to their standard of living in retirement.
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