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Collaborate with wealthy clients to boost trust

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Wealthy Americans are just as concerned with their retirement readiness as the rest of the population, even though their financial assets might be a great deal higher than average. However, according to a recent LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute report, wealthy investors who consult with an advisor are more likely to have their concerns assuaged.

The LIMRA research, which studied Americans with assets of more than $500,000, identified four predictors to lifetime loyalty. Advisor accessibility ranked at the top, but other predictors included consolidation of 50 percent or more of client assets with the advisor, long-standing relationships of at least 10 years, and client involvement and engagement in retirement planning.

According to the survey report, as confidence and preparation increases, it starts a positive cycle that benefits both client and advisor. Advisor involvement inspires confidence, that confidence leads to increased satisfaction, more satisfied customers trust their advisors more fully, and that trust creates more business. According to the report, more than half of wealthy customers (55%) consolidated three-fourths or more of their assets with an advisor who came up with a written retirement plan.

It also appears that client-advisor collaboration increases trust. The LIMRA study also shows that when affluent consumers are deeply engaged in their personal retirement planning, 60 percent say that their trust in their advisor increases. That collaboration also increases perception of improved financial results. According to the study, six in 10 wealthy Americans felt that their advisors achieve improved results if they’re involved in the planning. And conversely, the less engaged affluent consumers are in retirement planning consultations, the less they trust their advisor. Less involved clients are less engaged and believe their advisors provide less value to what they could achieve on their own.

LIMRA research showed that 63 percent of affluent consumers actively work with an advisor on at least a portion of their portfolio. “For affluent consumers, trust is more than delivering a strong investment performance,” said Jafor Iqbal, assistant vice president, LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute, in a prepared statement. “Advisors who engage their clients in rigorous retirement planning gain their confidence, trust, and their loyalty.”

Having a plan in writing is essential, too. The LIMRA study also revealed that clients who work with an advisor to develop a formal written plan to manage their assets are more confident in their retirement preparedness. More than half (54%) of wealthy investors with written plans said they were “very confident” about their ability to live their desired lifestyle after leaving the workforce, but only about half of those surveyed said they have worked out a formal written plan with their advisor that ultimately improves preparation for retirement.

Including a fixed indexed annuity (FIA) in that essential written plan can give pre-retirees and retirees a measure of financial security. FIAs provide guaranteed, regular payments and a reliable income stream, with no risk to the initial investment principal. 


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