Tag Archives: factfind workshop

DipFA Factfind Exam Tips: How can I analyse protection needs of a family?

The DipFA factfind exam set for Jan 12th 2017 is fast approaching. Our lead tutor Betul Cuninghame explores some concepts worth considering here:exam analyst

When recommending protection policies, always imagine the effects of the financial risks on the family and think in detail. It is not a good practice to see only one aspect of such risks and making recommendations on that basis. Recommending  life cover equal to the mortgage debt only without giving any extra money for other costs after death may not suffice!

EXAMPLE: the death of a parent may mean that:

  • no more income will come from that parent,
  • mortgage is no longer affordable;
  • it may result in repossession due to non-payment of mortgage
  • repossession may bring homelessness to the remaining members of the family
  • the other parent will lose his/her job to look after the children etc.
  • funeral costs and other costs to be paid from the other parent’s income or savings until s/he gets grant of probate – s/he can’t access any savings of the deceased until s/he gets grant of probate, resulting in costly bills to be paid by other means.

All these risks require careful analysis and proportionate amounts to overcome financial issues after the events. Having a life cover just equal to the mortgage debt will only pay off the mortgage but it will not leave any money for the other costs after death of that parent e.g. funeral costs, legal costs (probate), bills to be paid (one parent’s income may not be sufficient to pay the whole household bills) etc.

So, either

  • increase the lump sum amount to cover these extra costs and to provide income with the remaining amount OR
  • have another cover to supplement the life cover: e.g. Life cover to pay off the mortgage as well as a FIB to provide income to cover all these extra costs after the death of one parent.

You should be able to decide what amount of cover would be appropriate and justify it in your reports.

For more help and support with your upcoming factfind exam see how we can help you at our dedicated DipFA Training web site

IFS DipFA Fact Find Exam July 2015

The Fact Find for the next IFS Factfind exam has just been released, and there is a lot to get your teeth into!

What is covered?exam analyst

The fact find covers a wide variety of topics, such as;

Trust Planning

Final Salary Pensions

Investment Planning

Protection Planning

Mortgage Advice

and others, all to be researched and then written up in a 3 hour exam.

 

As always, there may also be areas or information missing or incomplete, which you will be expected to spot and account for, followed by some amendments on the day.

What does the exam look like?

Remember, the exam is there to test your knowledge, understanding, and crucially the application of that knowledge to the client’s situation and needs.

You will have to write or type out a full Suitability Report from scratch in three hours.  Whilst the report may not fully resemble a ‘real life’ report, (it is after all an exam) that is a tall order.

 

A good thing to remember is that you need to explain your recommendations, and why they are suitable for the clients, even if it seems ‘obvious’.

How should you prepare?

Research and Practice!

Reading and studying the required areas covered in the Fact Find is essential. The IFS Study Topic Folders are a good place to start.

Then once you have formulated some solid recommendations practice delivering your report in the 3 hour limit.

Remember though that anything can come up as an amendment on the day if the subject is in the syllabus!

Where can I get help?

Further help can be found via Futuretrend’s DipFA fact find training courses.

 

Some pointers for IFS DipFA Exam (07/03/13)

IFS DipFA Exam (date 07/03/13)

Some pointers…

The Fact Find presents us with a scenario for a Mr and Mrs Franey.  In my opinion the scenario in this exam is not a million miles removed from any number of real life cases that many Advisers may have seen during their career.

However, regardless of how life-like or not Students may feel the scenario is; it is of course actually there to test your knowledge, and crucially, the application of that knowledge to the client’s circumstances and the suitability of your advice.

This blog summarises some of the key issues students will need to consider for this exam, and some pointers about specific parts of the IFS DipFA Study Folders that students may find useful to review and refresh themselves of in addition to other study – this blog is not a comprehensive guide to the exam but should get you started.

In this scenario, the clients have exposure to income tax and national insurance as both an employee and as a sole trader.  A solid understanding of the rules relating to Income Tax and National Insurance (N.I.) is essential.  Anyone not fully clued up on these basics for both employed and self employed clients should immediately head to the IFS Study Folders (issued by the IFS when they started the DipFA course), and look up Topic 2 and Topic 3 in the Taxation folder.  Also be aware of N.I. Contributions once over State Retirement Age.

Additionally, in preparation for one of our courses, some of the required subject specific areas to consider for further study are;

  • Defined Benefit (Final Salary) pensions.  See Retirement Topic 5.3.2
  • Needs Based Protection Planning.  See Protection Topic 9
  • Investment Advice.  See Investments Topic 14

This is most definitely not a comprehensive list, and of course don’t forget, anything in the syllabus can be considered relevant for the exam.  The amendments on the day can cover any issue covered in the Study Folders, or related to these areas.  Students would be well advised to at least review the sections of the Study Folders for areas of advice they are not familiar with prior to the exam itself.  According to recent Examiner’s reports, many students are missing out on marks as a result of not sufficiently addressing the amendments on the day.  If there are gaps in your knowledge compared to the syllabus, you run the risk of being caught out!

Further support can be found by booking attendance at one of Futuretrend’s DipFA Exam Workshops, or on the remote support option.

Good Luck!

Paul Davis, Dip. PFS, Futuretrend Tutor.

Some pointers for IFS DipFA Exam (14/02/13)

IFS DipFA Exam (date 14/02/13)

Some pointers…

The Fact Find presents us with a scenario for a Mr Teague.  As usual, the IFS Exam Fact Find details a client scenario that stretches the imagination…the client is 28 years old with a child to provide for and yet has somehow managed to accumulate some £129,000 in liquid assets in his own name!

However, the scenario is of course not necessarily meant to be representative of real life, it is actually there to test your knowledge, and crucially, the application of that knowledge to the client’s circumstances and the suitability of your advice.  So, as usual, let’s not get hung up over how realistic or not the scenario is.

This blog summarises some of the key issues students will need to consider for this exam, and some pointers about specific parts of the IFS DipFA Study Folders that students may find useful to review and refresh themselves of in addition to other study – this blog is not a comprehensive guide to the exam but should get you started.

  • In this scenario, the client has exposure to income tax and national insurance as both an employee and as a self employed freelancer.  A solid understanding of the rules relating to Income Tax and National Insurance is essential

Anyone not fully clued up on these basics for both employed and self employed clients should immediately head to the IFS Study Folders (issued by the IFS when they started the DipFA course), and look up Topic 2 and Topic 3 in the Taxation folder.

Additionally, in preparation for one of our courses, some specific areas to consider for further study are;

  • Investments including Investment (Stocks & Shares) ISA accounts see Investment Topics 12.1 for ISAs; and 10.2 for Unit Trusts as well as 11.2 for With Profits Investments
  • Student Loan repayments and liabilities
  • Enterprise Investment Schemes see Investments 12.5
  • Warrants see Investment Topic 5.1

This is most definitely not a comprehensive list, and of course don’t forget, anything in the syllabus can be considered relevant for the exam.  The amendments on the day can cover any issue covered in the Study Folders, or related to these areas.  Students would be well advised to at least review the sections of the Study Folders for areas of advice they are not familiar with prior to the exam itself.

Further support can be found by booking attendance at one of Futuretrend’s DipFA Factfind Course, or on the remote support option.

Paul Davis, Dip. PFS, Futuretrend Tutor.

Some pointers for IFS DipFA Exam (date 17/01/13)

IFS DipFA Exam (date 17/01/13)

Some pointers…

The Fact Find presents us with a scenario for a Mr & Mrs Barlow.  As usual, the IFS Exam Fact Find details a client scenario most practising advisers would find hard to recognise…a young family with significant equity, decent liquid assets, and a high income to boot!  Most advisers can only dream of having working clients able to afford to pay regular premiums of £1,000 per month gross into their personal pension (Mr Barlow)!

However, the scenario is of course not necessarily meant to be representative of real life, it is actually there to test your knowledge, and crucially, the application of that knowledge to the client’s circumstances and the suitability of your advice.  So, as usual, let’s not get hung up over how realistic or not the scenario is.

This blog summarises some of the key issues students will need to consider for this exam, and some pointers about specific parts of the IFS DipFA Study Folders that students may find useful to review and refresh themselves of in addition to other study – this blog is not a comprehensive guide to the exam but should get you started.

In this scenario, students of course need to understand the basics around taxation – Income Tax, National Insurance, and Capital Gains Tax.  Anyone not fully clued up on these basics for both employed and self employed clients should immediately head to the IFS Study Folders (issued by the IFS when they started the DipFA course), and look up Topic 2 and Topic 3 in the Taxation folder.

Additionally, in preparation for one of our courses, some specific areas to consider for further study are;

  • Defined Benefit (final salary) schemes, in Retirement Topic 5.3.2
  • Tax efficient saving and investing, in Investments Topic 12
  • Interest Only Mortgages, can be found in Section 10 of the CEMAP Module 2 Revision Notes (available from the IFS website under your log in)
  • Protection Planning, in Protection Topic 9
  • Clients attitude to Risk, in Investments Topic 14.2.1
  • Retirement Planning Topic 7

This is most definitely not a comprehensive list, and of course don’t forget, anything in the syllabus can be considered relevant for the exam.  The amendments on the day can cover any issue covered in the Study Folders, or related to these areas.  Students would be well advised to at least review the sections of the Study Folders for areas of advice they are not familiar with prior to the exam itself.

Further support can be found by booking attendance at one of Futuretrend’s DipFA Factfind courses, or on the remote support option.

Paul Davis, Dip. PFS, Futuretrend Tutor.