Aviva Financial Advice (AFA) has launched its “whole of market advice model” for annuities, which will replace the previous referral requirement in cases where a non-Aviva product provided the best solution for a client’s needs.
Through the newly established process, AFA will review a customer’s options and then undertake a whole of market review to find the best match for the customer’s needs.
AFA advisers are now able to recommend other providers’ annuities and complete the set-up process as part of their role of advising on the whole of a customer’s retirement needs at this crucial point in the financial planning journey.
This means that customers will be able to remain with their named AFA adviser to get the right annuity from across the market.
Aviva said that the process will be “much easier for customers to navigate”, as their information only needs to be collected once and everything else is done by that same adviser. It also simplifies the process for a customer where pension pots consolidation is a consideration, as is increasingly commonly the case.
Rob Barker, managing director of UK savings and retirement at Aviva, said: “We’re delighted to be able to offer a whole of market option to our customers for annuities, which allows us to extend the advice service we can provide at this critical time in a customer’s financial planning journey.
“This builds on our previous model by making both the customer experience and the advice process far more joined-up end-to-end. This new proposition is better for our customers as AFA can advise on an annuity from across the whole market as part of their existing advice rather than being referred to a third party.
“It’s very important that people have advice at the point of choosing an annuity, as it’s a once-only decision that can’t be changed.
“Without advice, too often customers may opt for a product which gives the highest initial return, without understanding the implications of their choice, such as whether their circumstances would be better served with guarantees, for instance, or by selecting certain death benefit options.
“It gives customers the peace of mind that their AFA adviser understands the interlinked elements of their financial goals for retirement and how an annuity fits into those.”