Government Now Offering “Free Financial Advice”

You might think that taking financial advice from a Government that has dragged the country into a mountain of debt is like is a little like asking a Premiership footballer for marital advice.

But the Government has today launched a new service, Moneymadeclear, which offers “free financial advice” over the phone, on the web and face-to-face.

What’s it all about, Darling?

Alistair Darling launched the service, saying:

“Moneymadeclear is free, impartial advice for all, whether you are unsure about the small print in a mortgage form, want advice about opening a savings account for your children or grandchildren, or you want some help dealing with repayments before they get out of hand. This service will provide much needed advice for one million people across the UK in the coming year alone.”

The service is to be funded by money scrounged from dormant bank accounts, and follows “successful” tests in the North of England – what constitutes success, we’re not sure.

Here’s what the Moneymadeclear service offers:

  • cope with changing circumstances, like a sudden drop in income;
  • get the most out of a budget;
  • save for a special event, or just a rainy day;
  • borrow wisely;
  • plan for retirement;
  • understand tax and welfare benefits; and
  • explain financial jargon.

If they don’t have the answer to your problem, then they’ll let you know of someone who can help, such as financial advisers or accountants. And their time won’t be free.

Whilst it’s difficult to argue against the intentions of the service, and it should help some people, Walletpop UK has hit the nail on the head with its analysis of the service:

Then they (the FSA) concluded that the reason people don’t understand is because they don’t have access to the information. And they’re completely wrong there. There are two reasons people are bad with money. The first is that they don’t understand, and the second is that they do understand but they choose to ignore the little voice in their head that tells them it’s not a good idea to spend their entire paycheck on a handbag.

So what’s the answer?

These people don’t need the information to be out there somewhere. They need nothing short of a qualified person forcing their way into their lounge, demanding they take action, and refusing to leave until they have drawn up a will, moved their utilities, got a decent bank account, established a debt-repayment plan, set up a pension, remortgaged and established an investment plan. This person needs to have no vested interest in the individual doing anything other than the very best thing for themselves, so will need to be paid by the government. So the solution is enforced financial advice and enforced savings.

It’s a radical theory, but probably pretty near to what is necessary than this half-hearted effort from the Government.

Over to you

What do you think of this new service? Would you use it? Let us know in the comments below.

5 thoughts on “Government Now Offering “Free Financial Advice”

  1. Wound you please advice me on a policy that is due to mature on the 8th April 2011,this policy is a endowment for my morgage that i know longer needed.when i change my morgage over i phoned and asked to surrender the policy and was adived not to because i wound loose money. because of my circumstances of loosing my job i needed to get hold of some money to help me until i got back in work as i got know help with unemployment money.After talking and explaining every thing i was adviced to have some money from my policy and that i could pay it back in or it would be taking away from my policy at the end when it matures.i paid £26.82 a month for 25years payed in £8046.00
    number of units 680.471 price(pence) 1,150.4

    loan £3,000
    total maturity value £7,828.14
    deductions plus interest £4,112.61
    claim value £3,715.53
    in bold writing it says this could be less or more than the amount shown.i feel that i have been robbed out of my own money

    i was not told that i would be paying interest on my own money
    deductions plus interest £4,112.61

  2. What happens if a Bank Cashes a £4,900 cheque before the date on it ?

    Is there any recourse ? It also had the word “NOT BEFORE” next to the date

  3. Hello

    I need advice concerning Money worries. I am finding it difficult to get loan since because i heard my dept written off coming to 1 years now and i am finding difficult to borrow again.

    How long will i continue living like this before i can be able to borrow again? I am earning bits by bits money but these goes to family but i needed money to solve some Urgent family but find it diffcult. what advice can you give me please?

  4. Skipton Building Society offers free, whole of market advice on investments etc. It is well worth seeing them, they are also doing a promotion for FREE wills at the moment. I went to see them for the will and as a secondary thought got some of my investments reviewed. They suggested I move them to Monitered Informed Investment – where they actively monitor your investments for you and move them free of charge if they do not perform. They have helped me no end. Google Skipton for friendly, no obligation advice.

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