Savvy Truro residents outsmarting the rest
More people in Truro, Cornwall, are seeking professional advice about their finances than they are anywhere else in the UK, according to research by 'find-a-financial-adviser' website unbiased.co.uk.
In fact, almost one in seven of the town's 19,000 inhabitants was actively looking for financial advice over the past 12 months, compared to an average of less than one in 50 people across the UK.
And despite London being Europe's financial centre and having the highest UK population, it came in at number 84 on the list, with just 1.28% searching for an adviser.
But in general, southerners clearly have an appetite for advice, with residents in Salisbury (10.1%), Stevenage (9.6%), Bath (7.6%) and Cambridge (7%) all appearing in the top five most searched for areas, as a percentage of their population size.
Meanwhile, the north of England, Scotland and Northern Ireland have the lowest percentage of residents looking for financial advice. Edinburgh had just 0.5%, Glasgow 0.4% and Belfast 0.3%.
Karen Barrett, chief executive of unbiased.co.uk, said: "Advice is important for everyone, no matter where you live and how much money you have – getting professional advice on your mortgage options, help with finding the best annuity deal or advice on protecting your family against financial hardship, are all areas that are important to a large proportion of the population.
"We hear from a lot of consumers that they simply don't know how to make sense of certain areas of their finances and therefore decide to leave them for another day, which often results in these areas never being tackled. The important thing to remember is that you don't have to be a personal finance expert yourself; getting professional advice is a great way of taking control of your finances and giving your family peace of mind."
In exchange for any lump sum – usually your pension fund – an annuity is “bought” from an insurance company and provides an income for life. When you die, the income stops. Annuity rates fluctuate daily and depend on your sex (although from 21 December 2012 insurers will no longer be able to use gender as a factor when calculating annuities), age, health and a number of other factors, so you have to pick the right one and, once bought, its terms cannot be altered, so seek financial advice.