Trying to plan your financial health for the short, medium and long-term is one of the most crucial things you have to do for yourself and your family. It is also one of the hardest things to do as investment and wealth management seems like a dark and black art. The key issue for us is trust. Having grown increasingly frustrated with our previous financial advisor, we decided to look to make a change...
We initially considered the big investment houses, as they provided the obvious comfort of financial strength and are household brand names. However, we also felt that our portfolio would not necessarily be as important to them and believed we would quickly become inconsequential as clients. We needed to feel that we actually mattered and needed a personal relationship with someone, who actually took an interest in our lives and what we hoped to do in the future.
We knew about John Fissenden and Amber Wealth through personal recommendation and decided to meet and have a closer look at what they could do for us. It quickly became apparent that John had a strong track record of working with the 'big boys' but had built a successful business in his own right, by using what he had learned in the past. It was obvious from the early stages of our planning, that his team was passionate about understanding our current position and all the possibilities in the future. The early planning phase was in truth hard work! Understanding what you spend, where you spend it, what you own and what you owe takes some time and effort to pull together, but it is vital to help Amber understand your financial current position.
The next phase was interesting, but also quite a challenge! We had to think about all the events that might happen in the future and try and forecast, when they might take place. Trying to plan your retirement or figure out when your daughters might marry is indeed a thought provoking challenge! Amber were tremendous throughout this process. They were patient and clearly understood that we didn't have all the answers. However, asking the questions was crucial at this point and we quickly understood that financial planning has to be flexible. You can have a plan, but life 'happens' and it is important that the investment expert you choose understands that and is able to help you adjust your plans as your life changes.
We were not financial market experts, but had read enough to understand that the world is constantly changing and there is a degree of risk and volatility in the investment world. Amber were excellent at explaining how they gathered information and analysed the financial picture across the globe. They took time to explain that it was possible to have high or low risk strategies. Clearly, the gains you can make with higher risk portfolios could be higher, but there are no guarantees, so you have to consider carefully whether you can afford to lose as well as win. At no point did we feel that Amber were pushing us or forcing us in any particular direction. We felt they were simply explaining the options and highlighting the pros and cons. They were giving us what we needed to make informed decisions. It felt like they really cared about what we were concerned about and were trying to see the world from our point of view. That built trust, which was exactly what we needed at that point.
Once we agreed a plan the next stages were far easier. Amber took the lead at that point. They took over and just got on with it. We are only interested in achieving the goals we set. Amber spends every day concentrating on how they are achieved. We have regular reviews and the ability to look at the investment performance any time of day or night. The reality is that markets fluctuate. You could drive yourself mad, if you watch your investments soar on a Monday and dip on the Wednesday, before taking off again on Friday! It is important that you learn to trust that John and his team are doing that. We know they do. They are proactive in highlighting when they advise you make changes to your portfolio and explain why. Sometimes you will need to make tactical changes and John will help you do that.
Overall, we are really pleased with the performance of our investments with Amber. We take the longer-term view and looking at the 5 years it is apparent we are on track. Some points during that journey we have soared to giddy heights as the markets surged. At other points, we have seen more modest performance. However, even during the lower points we knew Amber was steering us in the right direction for the mid and long term. The bottom line is that Amber is delivering. We feel as comfortable as we will ever feel that our money is working for us and that our life is on track financially. We would strongly recommend that if you are looking for an investment and wealth management team, who make you feel informed, involved and allow you to sleep at night, knowing you are in good hands, then we think you should take a close look at Amber.”