We know Richard through family, but we first got in touch professionally five years ago when my wife and I were looking to move house and relocate back to Yorkshire.
Richard helped us through the mortgage process via emails and calls and was always on top of things and very quick to reply – we never waited more than day or so without getting a response.
The information Richard gave us was concise, and in a language we could understand. We both work for the NHS, and we’re not familiar with financial terminology, so having everything explained in lay terms was really helpful.
The information he gave us was concise, and in a language that my wife and I could understand. We both work for the NHS, and we’re not familiar with financial terminology, so having everything explained in lay terms was really helpful.
Bridging the gap with life insurance
Richard was able to identify gaps in other areas of our finances and suggested we consider life insurance. At the time we decided not to go for it, but since then our circumstances have changed – we’ve had a little boy and recently I lost a good friend very suddenly, which made us think about things more carefully. What would happen if – heaven forbid – something happened to one of us?
Richard put some quotes together that met our budget and gave us what we needed. We now have life insurance to cover the full term of the mortgage over the next 21 years, and family income benefit which would pay £2K a month if either of us passed away. This would mean the mortgage would be paid off and it would also provide a regular amount to cover ongoing bills and outgoings. So financially at least, things would remain the same.
We valued Richard’s judgement with this – if it had just been down to us, we wouldn’t have known where to start. My wife and I are really busy so we don’t have time to sit down and search through everything – life insurance is something you’re committing to for a long period of time, so you need reassurance that you’ve got the right product.
There are off-the-shelf packages you can find on the internet, but we knew Richard would be able to get something that would be more competitively priced and give us exactly what we needed.
Why a family feel is important
We’ve seen Richard take over from his Dad and seen the business go from strength to strength, and we like the family feeling of working with Oakworth Financial Planning. It’s important because we feel they know us as people – the knowledge they have about us means we’ll be better advised.
For example, when I emailed Richard to ask about putting the life insurance in place, he was able to email straight back and say “If I remember rightly the value of your mortgage must be this now,” and described roughly what I’d be looking for. Within a day or so he’d sent me some quotes with a breakdown of each one. Because he already had our background details, he was able to make the process more efficient and give us instant peace of mind. With others we’d be contacting them out of the blue and it wouldn’t have been so swift.
These are small things, but they have the ability to give you a feeling of security that really helps when you have a family and responsibilities.
A personal approach
The other great thing is that you feel you’re getting a very personal service – for example last night Richard dropped off some paperwork for us as we’d missed something off one of the forms. He’s also happy to pop round and do things face-to-face if need be.
Anything like that that reduces emails is helpful in my book!