Charlene Coulbeck, who lives in Beverley and works at the Hessle branch of Informed Financial Planning, is now considered to be amongst the country’s leading experts after gaining the qualification from the Society of Later Life Advisors (SOLLA).
The not-for-profit organisation undertakes a robust assessment before making the award and puts great emphasis on softer skills as well as technical knowledge.
Joining IFP in 2016 as a paraplanner, Ms Coulbeck soon progressed to become one of the award-winning firm’s financial planners, developing an interest in helping older clients along the way.
“Although these turbulent times seem a strange time to celebrate, I found myself doing just that when I received my results to say I had been awarded full accredited status.
“There is a lot to consider in later life finance and the studying I undertook was very broad, including learning the intricacies of the social welfare system, local authority funding, NHS care and power of attorney laws as well as financial products and solutions. I was also tested on a range of specific communications skills in relation to older or more vulnerable clients.
“Becoming accredited has allowed me to offer practical help and the empathetic guidance needed at a key stage in someone’s life as well as advising on financial products.”
IFP’s managing director Kevin Ferriby said that Ms Coulbeck had worked exceptionally hard. “She deserves to be very proud of her achievement,” he said. “It is significant for IFP, as our ability to offer an expert and holistic approach to financial planning for the older generation is strengthened through Charlene’s knowledge and her SOLLA-accredited status.”
IFP, which has offices in Hessle, Barnsley and Leeds, was established in 2004 and offers a full range of financial planning services. It became the first firm in Yorkshire to achieve corporate chartered status, and in 2018 was named as Money Marketing’s UK Advisor Firm of the Year. It has also been recognised for three consecutive years by Professional Advisor as the UK Best IFA to Work For.
The Society of Later Life Advisors was set up to help people and their families find trusted accredited financial advisers, who understand financial needs in later life. It covers a variety of advice areas including retirement planning (pensions and annuities), funding for care home fees, savings and investment planning, tax matters and estate and wealth planning.