We live in a world that offers us a large number of options when it comes to financial decisions and services. People that are looking for the best ways to invest, save and spend money should have no problem locating hundreds of companies that are willing to provide their services. However, your money is important and you will not want to trust it to just anyone. Customers searching for the best financial deals and services are therefore going to have to do some important comparisons and research, and there are a few important tools that you will want to use in order to do this research.
The Basic Purposes of the FSA
Whether you are planning on opening a new loan, purchasing a life insurance policy or simply getting some financial advice, you will most likely be forced to pick a specific company or financial institution to work with. In order to regulate these companies that provide financial services, the British government has granted a lot of power to a regulatory organisation called the Financial Services Authority or FSA. The FSA has been around for years and has the main purpose of helping customers find the very best companies for financial services.
The FSA is an organisation that is not run by the government, but rather is independent. The Financial Services and Markets Act of 2000 granted power to the FSA to regulate financial services, and they have come up with a number of criteria that companies must meet in order to be recognized by the FSA. These criteria are often referred to as principles of good regulation, and the following are just a few of the things that companies will need to do in order to get FSA approval.
In order for a company that provides financial services to be approved by the FSA, they will need to have proved that they can offer a superior level of customer service. Companies will need to have management that is involved in the day to day operation of the company, they will need to be efficient, and they will have had to created some kind of public awareness. In addition, companies who are looking for FSA approval will also have to offer competitive prices and services. The regulations imposed by the FSA are very fair and business that are lacking these qualities are typically not going to be able to give you the service that you need.
How to Use FSA Resources
The FSA is protecting customers by maintaining a registry of the companies that have complied with their principles of good regulation. If you are interested in using a company for financial services, but you discover that they are not authorised by the FSA, it may be due to unscrupulous activity, fraud or other problems that you will want to avoid. When you are considering opening a new insurance policy, are thinking about taking out a new loan, or are debating switching banks, you will want to first make sure that they companies you are considering have been approved by the FSA.
Now that you have some basic information about FSA protection, you can understand why their services are so important to consumers in the UK. Before you make large decisions with your money and purchase financial services, make sure to consult the resources that are offered by the FSA free of charge. Just a few minutes of research can help you avoid making large mistakes by trusting companies that offer products or services that may not be reliable.