Tips for staying on top of SMSF clients

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Helping with an SMSF is nominating yourself to take on a whole host of responsibilities.

Accountants will have to have the flexibility to balance this commitment with countless others, keeping this iron hot while many others lay smouldering in their fire. In the same way, financial planners are famously time-poor and leaned on more and more by their clients. To improve their service and their returns, both need to take a role as a trusted partner. This means answering any questions from trustees as they arise – and they will arise – as well as coming up with innovative solutions to their issues.

If your business involves working with SMSF clients, you’ll know that none of this is an easy task take on, especially when combined with other core parts of your typical working week. So, how can you improve the services you provide to SMSF trustees and stay on top of their needs?

We’ve focused on three tips that aim to do just that:

1) Identify individual client traits

Naturally, you’re going to have a mix of clients, and some will be more organised than others. When a new client begins, take some time over the first few conversations to determine how organised they are likely to be, and then plan accordingly.

More disorganised clients will likely need you to be more proactive around them.

This is where a white-label resource like Aquila Live comes in particularly useful. By presenting all their SMSF and stock-broking accounts on one easy-to-access, simple-to-use platform, you’re giving clients the resources to become more organised and invested in their fund. This tends to work out well for the accountant or financial planner, as they have to do less work around organising their disorderly clients.

2) Offer something different

If you can advise clients as well as just handle their requests, you will have a partnership that’s more likely to last the distance. Trustees will have the opportunity to take various strategies with their super funds, and if you can point these out, you’re offering a service beyond what they might otherwise find elsewhere.

Of course, it’s difficult to keep a finger on the pulse of the ever-changing SMSF industry, which is one of the benefits of the Aquila service.

As an SMSF service provider, Aquila can keep you abreast of any changes, as well as present opportunities for you to pass on to your clients. For instance, we help clients figure out the best way to structure an investment in their fund, helping you to be innovative on your clients’ behalf.

3) Plan for life changes

The very nature of an SMSF means that its members will be at the helm of their fund from a young to potentially very old age, making it important for those helping them to understand how life changes can influence their management capabilities.

For instance, if one family member is in charge of the super fund and takes all the administrative responsibilities for it, what happens if he or she passes away? The responsibility falls to the spouse, who may have no experience or knowledge for managing the fund.

Similarly, those in the later stages of life want to enjoy their retirement, so may be away on vacation for large parts of the year – in which case, paperwork will begin to mount up and cause blockages to the fund’s management.

Trustees in such situations may wish to close their SMSF believing that it is too hard, which is why it’s good for accountants and planners to manage such risks in good time. Having a solution such as Aquila Live up their sleeves is a way to spot and plan for any potentially disruptive life changes.

Do you need help with your SMSF clients? Contact Aquila today.