Puzzle Financial Advice Pty Ltd - Fees

We provide fee-based advice. What are the fees?

Three key points:
  • We work for you – not for a product manufacturer.
  • You are in control – you can turn off the fees at any time.
  • We do not accept kick-backs of any sort from any product provider including volume bonuses etc.

The criterion to assess fees from a financial planner is as follows:-
  • Most importantly, who is paying the financial planner?
    • Bernie Ripoll, Chairman Parliamentary Inquiry into Financial Services 24/8/2009 “The responsibility of anyone selling any product is to the person who pays them not to the person they sold the product to necessarily”
    • Therefore, since you are paying our fees, our responsibility is to you.
    • This is a first and critical step in ensuring you get the service you are looking for.
  • But will I get value-for-money?
    • To make this a win-win relationship, we have to work to make this relationship succeed – and so do you.
    • The long-term test of value-for-money is very simple.
      • You can terminate the relationship at any time, if you do not feel you are getting value for money.
      • If we were not delivering value for money, we would not have many long-term clients.
      • You are in charge of how much time we put in on your account, and therefore you have a big influence on how large our invoice to you is. If you want a smaller invoice, use less of the time of our staff. Simple. Over time, we get to know your needs, and that helps us adjust our service level to suit you.
    • But how do we know we are going to get value for money at the beginning of the relationship?
      • On this, there is no certainty for either of us.
      • To improve our chances of success, like in any relationship, let us start slowly while we build confidence in each other.
      • As our relationship strengthens over time, we can aim to achieve bigger things and we can move more quickly.

Structure of our Fees

All new clients will have fees structured as follows:
  • Portfolio advice and management will be provided under a fixed price arrangement, agreed between client and advisor.
  • Other advice will be provided on a time-used basis, or other arrangement as agreed between client and advisor from time to time.

What is the benefit of fixed-fee investment and portfolio management advice ?

Fixed fees are the current leading-edge concept in unconflicted, fee-based financial planning advice. Only a small number of financial planners have adopted this concept at this point in time. but I think the number will grow over time. Some more discussion about fixed-fees is below.

Benefit of fixed-fee investment advice? A fixed-price advice model is currently seen as the best unconflicted fee-based advise model. Therefore, it should help support our efforts to try to provide you the best possible advice over time.
  • Greater certainty of fees.
  • No additional charges if you call us or meet with us to discuss your investments.
  • We are in the best position to recommend investments like term deposits, when they are most appropriate.
  • Note: We do reserve the right to adjust fees over time, if a client uses a disproportionately large amount of our resources.

Money Management article discussing the merits of fixed fees, for another perspecive.

Bottom line:

  • Fixed fees are a new phenomena in Australian financial planning, so far only adopted by small number of planners.
  • A fixed fees regime is the cutting edge in eliminating conflicts of interest, supporting the advisers ability to provide the best possible advice to clients.
  • That is, fixed fees aligns a client's interest with that of the client to the greatest possible extent.


When investing in shares, a little fear is a healthy thing. It helps investors, not to become reckless. It motivates investors to be careful to take only “acceptable levels of risk.” It helps ensure that we consider the down-side risk and not just the up-side potential.