An interview with Kamal Solanki and Ravi Solanki – Directors of Strathmore Wills & Estate Planning
When you talk to Kamal Solanki and Ravi Solanki about their Wills & Estate Planning business, the overall impression they give is one of passion for the company they have created, and how it helps people create a legacy for the future.
Kamal, Ravi and the team at Strathmore Wills & Estate Planning advise clients on protecting, preserving and keeping their wealth within the family bloodline for many generations. As student debt, stagnating wages and rising house prices make it ever-more challenging for young people to reach the levels of financial security enjoyed by their parents, the demand for Strathmore Wills & Estate Planning’s knowledge and services for passing on wealth to the next generation has skyrocketed.
Planning their estate so that it can weather life’s challenges such as mis-spending inheritances, 3rd party claims, future divorces, , political and economic storms and other tax legislation, provides clients with the peace of mind that after they’ve gone, their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren will enjoy the fruits of the wealth they have built up.
Sitting down with Kamal and Ravi to talk about Strathmore Wills & Estate Planning, one gets an immediate sense of their desire to make a difference in their client’s lives and make the often-complex process of wealth protection accessible to anyone who is committed to passing on their prosperity to future generations.
How did Strathmore Wills & Estate Planning start?
Kamal – Prior to founding Strathmore Wills & Estates Planning, I worked in the financial sector as a mortgage broker. I generally asked people if they had a valid Will, as it is imperative to have one if you own a property. No matter who I asked, every person said “No”. This sparked an interest in will writing and estate planning and my enthusiasm for creating strategies so clients can protect their wealth has never waned.
Ravi – I was working in various corporate roles prior to joining Strathmore Wills & Estate Planning in 2017. I’d felt unfulfilled for a long time; I reached a point where I wanted my work to make a tangible difference in people’s lives. So many people want to pass on a legacy to their children and grandchildren but receive the wrong advice, or worse, are told that the solutions available are too expensive and “not for the likes of them”. This is absolutely false – anyone who has a reasonable level of assets and property can make a difference to the lives of future generations. Being able to make that happen and providing peace of mind for my clients is what drives me every day.
What are your business values?
Kamal – We conduct our business face to face, which means we truly get to know our clients. Given that our business is to protect a person’s life-long legacy, understanding them and their motivations is essential. I often become a friend as well as an advisor – from the beginning I strove to create the opposite of the ‘stuffy lawyer’ image that people often have in mind when they think of estate planning and trusts. All our team are relaxed, friendly, and professional.
Another area that we heavily focus on is ensuring all our staff, including myself and Ravi, invest in continuing professional development. We want our clients to trust that we are alive to any changes that may affect their legacy, and they understand their options if and when the government shifts the goalposts. Everything that we recommend has also been implemented in our own personal lives and for our family.
Ravi – When speaking to clients, we don’t ‘sell’ them a particular solution. Our aim is to educate people on their options for leaving a legacy and then working on a plan to achieve their goals. Our clients are smart, educated, and have worked very hard to get where they are today. We have a deep respect for people who come to us and understand they have a choice of advisors. Therefore, we commit to providing trustworthy, high-quality, knowledgeable service not only to them, but to their beneficiaries.
What is the first step a person who wants to create a legacy should take?
Ravi – Most people know they need to put steps in place to protect their wealth for their children, grandchildren, and beyond. We have always worked on the knowledge that every family is different. Therefore, to ensure we provide the options that best suit the individual client, we hold a Discovery Meeting in which we find out the person’s aspirations and see if we can help them achieve it. We don’t charge for this time, and people who contact us can be confident that if we cannot help them, we will be open and honest about this fact straight away.
Kamal – We want to work with clients on a long-term, sustainable basis rather than conduct one-off transactions. This is why the Discovery Meeting is so important. For anyone looking to create a legacy, having a chat to discover if there is a rapport with the advisor is essential.
Ravi – The other thing to check before instructing an advisor is that they are regulated. Strathmore Wills & Estate Planning is regulated by the Society of Will Writers, and we belong to the Society of Trusts and Estate Practitioners (STEP). All of our planning is signed off by STEP approved lawyers and we carry full insurance for all of our advice.
Kamal – We understand that our clients are trusting to provide advice and education regarding wealth that they have worked incredibly hard to accumulate. Therefore, we make sure that the checks and balances are in place to protect their interests and those of their beneficiaries.
Strathmore Wills & Estate Planning are a leading provider of Will Writing and Estate Planning solutions based in Romford, Essex. We are dedicated to protecting your wealth for many generations, not just one lifetime.
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