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Demand for advice rises

The number of Australians seeking financial advice has doubled from five years ago, a new report finds.

According to Investment Trends, 2.6 million non-advised Australians want the services of a financial planner over the next two years. This demand has jumped twofold from five years ago.

The global pandemic has pushed many to seek professional advice and reassess their financial situation, the research firm's 2020 Financial Advice Report found, with 44% of those surveyed claiming COVID-19 as a major catalyst.

"Potential clients overwhelmingly prefer receiving comprehensive advice over limited advice (76% cite this vs. 35%). But when cost is factored in, preference for limited advice markedly increases," Investment Trends senior analyst King Loong Choi said.

The majority of potential clients (61%) said they are open to upgrading to comprehensive advice over time, he added.

The non-advised expressed strong interest in intra-fund advice. Nationwide, one-in-six Australians said they currently use intra-fund advice services offered by their main super fund.

Among those who don't, 37% intend to take up this service, particularly young superannuation fund members, Choi said.

About 77% of members under 35 years old, based on a population of 4501 survey participants, would like to receive intra-fund advice, compared to 70% outside of this group.

The key areas the younger generation wants help with include investments outside super, tax strategies and budgeting assistance.

"Further, advice via super funds can lead to planner referrals, with 55% of members open to being transferred to a planner. Older members favour a super fund-based planner, while their younger counterparts are more inclined to seek out an independent planner," Choi said.

Read more: Financial adviceInvestment TrendsKing Loong ChoiFinancial planningFinancial Advice Report
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