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Which? warning on panels

In a soon to be published guide to the new financial advice regime that will also cover mortgages Which? will advise consumers to seek out a truly independent adviser – be that for mortgages or other financial advice.

Which? principal researcher Teresa Fritz says: “We&#39ll tell people to use an adviser that can search the whole of the market. Even some advisers who say they are independent work with a limited number of lenders. At second best, consumers should seek out the adviser that offers the most lenders on their panel.

“Then after seeing such an adviser people should use an online calculator to check they have been recommended the best deal.”

While the Consumers&#39 Association has fears over panels it has strong concerns about the introduction of multi-ties as they are less flexible than panels as they are contractually agreed.

And although it welcomes FSA regulation it also warns that it will do nothing to prevent advisers focussing on cross-selling insurance products, rather than finding the best mortgages for their clients.

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