Welcome to the latest edition. The news has
recently been full of stories about Brexit,
Article 50, inflation and how some key
announcements from Spring Budget 2017
could impact on our finances.
It can be very confusing with the number of
conflicting viewpoints given, so in this issue we
aim to bring some clarity to these talking points.
Brexit has created an air of uncertainty, and no
one really knows what’s coming next or what it
could all mean in the long term. The implications
of Brexit and its impact on markets is a significant
investment planning challenge over the coming
years for all investors. Brexit is overshadowing all
other investment planning issues and highlighting
the need for solutions which can provide
protection and the possibility of strong returns. So
the road to Brexit has reached another milestone,
but what could it mean for UK investors? Turn to
page 06 to read the full article.
On 6 April 2017, a new additional main
residence nil-rate band (RNRB) was introduced,
which allows for less Inheritance Tax to be
paid in situations when a family home is left
to children, grandchildren or certain other
‘qualifying beneficiaries’ – including stepchildren
and foster children. On page 11, we consider
why some people could miss out because
they’ve assigned their sibling to inherit their
family home and not a direct descendant.
On the second anniversary of the pension
freedoms reforms that took effect from April
2015, some retirement savers say they are
still confused by the rules and want no more
changes. The changes of April 2015 represented
a complete shake-up of the UK’s pensions
system. There are now more options for using a
private pension pot, enabling some people aged
over 55 to have greater freedom over how they
can access their retirement pot. Turn to page 03.
A guide to estate preservation
You’ve worked hard all of your life to get to where
you are, and providing for those you care about
is important to you. However, just owning your
own home and having sufficient capital to provide
a reasonable income during your retirement may
leave your estate with a sizeable IHT liability.
If you want to have control over what happens
to your assets after your death, effective estate
planning is essential. After a lifetime of hard
work, you want to make sure you protect as
much of your wealth as possible and pass it onto
the right people.
A Guide to Investment Planning
Planning for your future financial independence relies on selecting the right type of investments and balancing the risks
A Guide to ISAs
As we approach the end of the 2016/17 tax year,
have you fully utilised your annual Individual
Savings Account (ISA) allowance? The ISA
limit for 2016/17 is £15,240, rising to £20,000
in 2017/18. Anyone wishing to utilise their
allowance should do so before the deadline at
midnight on Wednesday 5 April 2017. The date
marks the end of the 2016/17 tax year. It is a
‘use it or lose it’ allowance, meaning that if you
don’t use all or part of it in one tax year, you
cannot take that allowance over to the next year.
An ISA is a tax-efficient investment wrapper
in which you can hold a range of investments,
including bonds, equities, property, multi-asset
funds and even cash, giving you control over
where your money is invested tax-efficiently.
Achieving financial security and independence
Getting the right financial advice can be the difference between achieving your goals or not
Building a Bigger Retirement Income
Could you receive more tax-free cash when you retire?
Have you overlooked your most important assets, the people who drive your business?
Buying an Annuity
Why shopping around for an annuity could increase your income
Critical illness cover
Have you chosen the right cover to help ease your financial pressures?
Will you pass on your wealth in a tax-efficient manner?
Final Retirement Countdown
If you are aiming to retire within the next five years, it’s time to get into the mindset of considering the practicalities of fulfilling your desired lifestyle and making plans. While you should think about retirement planning as early as possible, the five years leading up to retirement are critical. Retirement may be looming with terrifying urgency, and the reality is that you have just 60 pay packets left until you retire. This is a time when you’ll need to obtain up-to-date pension forecasts and obtain professional financial advice to make sure your retirement plans are on track. So if you believe you are five years or less away from retirement, now is the time to seriously review your financial plans with a financial check-up.
Have you lost sight of your investment goals?
Financial protection for you and your family
With the abundance of choice, how will you make the right decisions?
Guide to 2016/17 Year End Tax Planning
Our 2016/17 Year End Tax Planning guide highlights some
of the key tax planning opportunities for all stages and
facets of life.
We provide suggestions for further
consideration and discussion,
enabling you to arrange your
taxes, investments and wider financial affairs to
reduce current and future tax liabilities. Please
keep in mind that everyone’s tax situation
is different. Before implementing any of the
strategies discussed here, you should obtain
Effective tax planning is about knowing the
taxes you are liable to pay and acting to legally
minimise them. It is also about maximising
your net income and creating opportunities to
invest and save tax-efficiently.
Guide to Active and Passive Investment Management
You can invest in funds which provide
access to a variety of different markets
and sectors. But wherever you invest,
you will be faced with one of the most basic
questions: do you want to put your money in
‘actively’ or ‘passively’ managed funds?
Guide to Asset Allocation
Your overall asset allocation needs to
reflect your future capital or income
needs, the timescales before those
capital sums are required or the level of
income sought, and the amount of risk you can
tolerate. Investing is all about risk and return.
Not only does asset allocation naturally
spread risk, but it can also help you to boost
your returns while maintaining, or even
lowering, the level of risk of your portfolio. Most
rational investors would prefer to maximise
their returns, but every investor has their own
individual attitude towards risk.
Guide to Brexit
Brexit has created an air of uncertainty, and no one really knows
what’s coming next or what it could all mean in the long term.
On 29 March, Prime Minister Theresa May triggered Article 50 of
the Lisbon Treaty in a letter to EU Council President Donald Tusk,
starting two years of divorce proceedings.
Guide to creating the life you want
In our guide, we consider the questions you
may need to ask to shape your future. As we all
know and experience, there are usually bumps
in the road on every journey. Even the best
financial plans and most experienced investors
can’t always predict the complexities of life.
So the starting point for protecting, growing
and passing on your wealth is to have a clear
financial plan, linked to your lifestyle goals.
But your financial goals – which are likely to
be the biggest, most life-changing goals of all
– can all too often be put on the back burner,
whether this is working out ways to build an
investment portfolio, set up a business, retire
early or leave your wealth to your family.
Guide to Creating Wealth for Children
Whether you’re a relative, parent, grandparent
or a friend, investing for a child’s future is
one of the most important things you can
do. For any investor, time is a powerful ally
– so where you are investing on behalf of children,
you start with a great advantage.
Not only do long timescales allow
for greater risk-taking and thus
higher potential returns, but there
is the power of compounding, as profits are
re-invested year on year. Ask any parent, and
they’ll agree on one thing: one minute your
children are toddlers, and almost before you
know it they’re going to university or planning
to buy their first property.
Whether you save little and often or have
bigger sums of money to invest, keep going over
a few years and you can build up a really useful
amount. It can go a long way to setting them on
the road to becoming independent or helping
them with university or housing costs. You might
even encourage them to become savers.
Saving for a child today is a wonderful gift for
their future. Not only can they start their adult
lives with some savings in hand, but getting
kids involved early with saving also helps them
learn important lessons about money.
Guide to Critical Illness cover
What would life be like if you were
diagnosed with a serious illness?
Things could change very suddenly.
You’d get your family together and tell them what
was going on. Before long, you’d start spending
time in hospital for treatment. You may also need
to take some time off.
It’s hard to know what the financial impact
of all this would be for you and the people who
depend on you. A critical illness can affect anyone
at any age and can turn your life upside down. In
the event of being unable to work due to a critical
illness, having a financial cushion in place would
alleviate some of the stress of the situation.
Some people may use their savings to
supplement their loss of income, others may rely
on an employment benefit package, while others
may find that Critical Illness Cover is their best
option. Critical Illness Cover can help minimise
the financial impact on you and your family if you
become critically ill.
Guide to designing your own lifestyle plan
Welcome to our Guide to Designing Your Own
Lifestyle Plan. It happens to most of us at the
start of a new year, and especially this year,
after the financial and emotional devastation
caused by last year’s coronavirus (COVID-19)
We may be reflecting more on the way we’ve
been living our lives and want to make some
positive changes going forward. But, ultimately,
it’s important to remember that we are in charge
of our own destiny and it’s better to start late
than never to start at all.
As we’ve seen, the COVID-19 pandemic
has affected us all in markedly different ways
and the pandemic will continue to affect our
finances for years to come. What is essential is
that we don’t let fear get in the way just because
we’re not sure what exactly change will bring.
We must also not be complacent because we’re
comfortable with our life, even though we know
we can do better.
Guide to Environmental Social Governance (ESG) Investing
Once a niche approach thought to come at
the expense of returns, Environmental,
Social and Governance (ESG) strategies
have proven that they can be market-beating. If
you’re someone who wants to make a positive
difference, you might be interested to know how
you, your money and the things you care about
could all benefit from sustainable investing.
#e coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has
shown the fragility of the planet, its complexity
and interconnectedness in terms of demand and
supply in trade and commerce, and how these can
be under threat if not sustainable. ESG investing
was already on a trajectory to reshaping the
investment landscape in this new decade, but the
COVID-19 outbreak is now likely to quicken the
pace of this reshaping.
Guide to estate and trust planning
Welcome to our Guide to Estate and Trust
Planning. This guide is designed to give you
a basic understanding of Estate and Trust
Planning and the issues you may face. We look
at various ways you could reduce a potential
Inheritance Tax liability in order to pass on as
much wealth as possible.
This guide addresses the main arrangements
available to individuals.
The language used throughout this guide is
technical due to the nature of the subject. We
always recommend that you obtain professional
financial advice before making any decisions. We
can help you understand these technical issues
and make any decisions that are appropriate for
your personal circumstances.
Guide to Estate Preservation
Welcome to our Guide to Estate Preservation. Wealth transfer has
become an important issue for many families today. Individuals with
assets of any size should prepare for their eventual transfer whilst
making provision for any tax or legal consequences.
This guide is designed to give you a basic understanding of estate
preservation and the issues many people face. We look at various ways
individuals could potentially reduce or mitigate an Inheritance Tax
liability in order to pass on their wealth in the most tax-efficient way.
Guide to estate preservation
Welcome to our Guide to Estate
Preservation. Effective estate
planning aims to ensure that the
wealth you have accumulated during your
lifetime is distributed to the right people, at the
right time and as tax-efficiently as possible.
Preserving and enhancing your wealth is one
of our core objectives. You’re likely to want to
pass as much of your wealth to your loved ones
as possible. And you’ll want to provide for your
dependents, especially your spouse and children.
We’re here for all of life’s milestones to help
you prepare for the future. We are able to
help you navigate the complexities of estate
planning, Inheritance Tax and setting up
trusts, for seamless family transitions.
Inheritance Tax is no longer confined to
the super-rich. If, like many people in the UK,
your assets exceed £325,000, being subjected to
a 40% tax bill upon inheritance can exacerbate
an already stressful time for your loved ones.
But with careful tax planning, we can help you
preserve more of your estate legacy, without
compromising your financial security. The
average bill for an estate paying Inheritance
Tax is over £170,000.
Guide to family succession planning
Family succession planning is a journey that should commence the
day you start your business, but often only commences with a trigger
– in other words, something that has initiated the decision to start the
succession process. It may be one of the most challenging experiences
facing any business leader, especially an entrepreneurial business person who
has built a family business from scratch, so it is crucial to get right.
Guide to getting my finances in order
When it comes to making financial decisions, you don’t have to go it alone
The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic outbreak has affected people in
various ways. However, this has undoubtedly been a time for
contemplation surrounding our personal finances. Many have taken
the new-found time at home to conduct a review of their finances,
to assess necessary and unnecessary
expenditure. While uncertainty with the job market continues,
a tighter grip on finances is key.
Even if you have a solid financial plan in place, it still
needs to be updated regularly to ensure it reflects
any life changes. But what should your priorities
focus on now? Is it time to turn your attention to
your pension, ISA or your mortgage, or something else?
Should you be thinking about investing more for your
children’s education or putting an estate plan in place? And then
there are those previous company pension schemes to review –
is it three, four…or was it five?
Guide to growing your own wealth
Investing can be intimidating,
a complex world with its own
language. But by recognising
and meeting your distinct
requirements, we can have a
positive impact on your life and
investment objectives and help you
through the entire process.
When growing your wealth,
it’s essential to look at the big
picture. Your wealth should work
in all the ways you want it to.
This means looking at what your
wealth is now and what it might
be. Our approach is to work with
you to create a strategy for your
investments that match your
needs, and we’ll do whatever it
takes to keep your investment
portfolio running smoothly.
Guide to income investing
Investing for income means choosing assets that are able to
provide you with a regular income. This is in contrast to
investing for growth, which focuses on how much your assets
could gain in value. In our Guide to Income Investing, we
consider the main investment asset classes that are used to
generate a regular income.
Guide to Income Protection
If you were one of the million people in the UK each year that find
themselves unable to work due to a serious illness or injury, how
would you cope financially? The Association of British Insurers
2017 findings highlight the fact that of these, many find it difficult
to survive on their savings or on sick pay from work.
Guide to income protection insurance
Have you ever considered what would
happen to you or your loved ones if
you couldn’t work due to a long-term
illness or injury which results in a loss of
earnings? It’s important to be able to keep your
finances healthy as you recover.
No one likes to think that something bad
will happen to them, but if you couldn’t work
due to a serious illness, how would you manage
financially? Being unable to work can quickly
turn your world upside down. How would you
cover your outstanding bills or childcare costs?
Could you survive on savings or sick pay from
work? If not, you may need some other way to
keep paying the bills – and you might want to
consider income protection insurance.
Guide to Individual Savings accounts 2021/22
If you have cash savings or are investing,
there is no reason not to use an ISA taxefficient
wrapper. The end of the 2020/21
tax year is Monday 5 April 2021, meaning
that if you’re planning to use this year’s ISA
allowance you need to act fast. There’s no
rollover from one tax year to the next.
We’ve answered some typical questions
we get asked about how best to use the ISA
allowance to help make the most of the
opportunities as this tax year draws to a close.
Guide to Inheritance Tax Planning
When we die, we like to imagine that we can pass on our assets
to our loved ones so that they can benefit from them. In order for
them to benefit fully from your assets, it is important to consider
the impact of Inheritance Tax.
Guide to investing
Welcome to our Guide to Investing. It might seem complicated
– and it isn’t for everyone – but investing can make your money
work a lot harder. Whatever stage of life you’ve reached and
whatever plans you may have for the future, you want your
money to earn the best return possible without taking undue
risk. That’s why it’s important to invest in a way that’s right for
you and that will meet your goals.
By setting aside some of your money now in investments that
could appreciate over time, you’ll set yourself up for greater
financial security in the future. Whether you want to build a
pension for retirement, save a deposit for a house or generate
extra income to cover an expense, any savings you may have
been able to accrue that are not required to finance your
day-to-day living may provide a more substantial return if you
Whether it’s a large sum or a small amount, there are many
different ways to invest to suit most people. Once you’ve
made the decision to invest, you can either invest a lump sum
or invest monthly to build up your investments over time. In
broad terms, those with a medium to long-term investment
goal – five years or more – should consider stocks and shares
given the historically higher returns offered by stock markets
and to protect their savings against the impact of inflation.
Guide to investing
Welcome to our Guide to Investing. Creating and maintaining
the right investment strategy plays a vital role in securing your
financial future. Whether you are looking to invest for income
or growth, we can provide the quality advice, comprehensive
investment solutions and ongoing service to help you achieve
your financial goals.
Whatever stage of life you’ve reached and whatever your plans
are, you’ll want your money to earn the best return possible
without taking undue risk. That’s why it’s important to invest in a
way that’s right for you and that will meet your goals.
In our guide, we explain how we can help you create a personal
investment strategy, built upon an understanding of your
individual circumstances and financial ambitions. Our aim is
to give our clients the confidence that comes from a better
understanding of their financial position, let them know what their
options are and provide a plan to help them get to where they
want to be that will respond to changes in their circumstances
and the financial markets.
The value of an investment will be directly linked to the
performance of the funds you select, and the value can therefore
go down as well as up. You may get back less than you invested.
You should also bear in mind that the levels and bases of
taxation and reliefs from taxation can change at any time and are
generally dependent on individual circumstances.
Guide to investing for my future
Welcome to our Guide to Investing for My
Future. As we move into the twenty-twenties,
investors will still need to navigate the
headwinds of volatility in markets, geopolitics
and asset valuations.
Making the right choices to invest for your
future can seem complex. But with the right
investment strategy in place we can ensure you
are able to make informed decisions to secure
the financial future you want. We’ll help you
work out exactly what you want to get out of
your investments, set realistic targets and keep
you on track.
Guide to Investment Diversification
In our Guide to Investment Diversification, we
consider why diversification is an important
part of investing. In practical terms,
diversification is holding investments which will
react differently to the same market or economic
event. Generally speaking, there are four broad
asset classes: cash, fixed interest (bonds), property
and shares (equities).
Since performance in any one asset class can be
unpredictable depending on shifts in the market,
investing across several asset classes can provide
greater diversification potential. Therefore, if one
asset class performs favourably, it can potentially
offset another that is performing less favourably,
providing more balance to your portfolio when
market shifts occur.
Guide to Investment Insights
Welcome to our Guide to Investment Insights.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) is impacting societies
and markets around the world. As concerns over
the pandemic continue to dominate headlines,
cause volatility in the market and subsequently
shake confidence, it is perfectly normal for
investors to become nervous, question their
investment approach and concentrate on the
potential for short-term losses over their longer term
During any market ups and downs, it’s
important for investors to remain calm and focus
on long-term goals. Selling investments when
markets appear to be in crisis mode may feel like
the right thing to do. However, decades’ worth of
market data show that staying invested through
volatile times has been a smart route to take to
pursue long-term financial goals.
Guide to Investment Outlook 2017
After a game-changing
2016, the investment
environment was not only
mixed but characterised
by uneven global growth
and political events
such as Brexit and the
US elections. Many of
the drivers that affected
markets in 2016 will
almost certainly remain
the focus for 2017.
Guide to Investment Planning
Money, of course, plays an important role in our
lives. While it’s not everything, it can help you
achieve your goals and gives you greater choices
and freedoms. That’s why it’s important to increase
our financial intelligence to learn how to build
In this Guide to Investment Planning, we consider
the process of organising investments as a whole
and explore the key principles and techniques
behind effective portfolio construction, so that you
have the best chance of constructing a portfolio that
meets your investment objectives.
As an individual, you are entirely different from
everyone else around you, and hence you must
create your own unique investment approach.
But, as all investments carry some degree of risk,
we recommend you always seek professional
advice to build the best strategy to achieve your
long- or short-term goals.
Guide to ISA Transfers
Did you know you can transfer your Individual Savings Account
(ISA) from one provider to another at any time? Transferring your
ISA to another provider is easy and could boost the funds in your
tax-efficient account – but it has to be done right. If you have
accumulated a number of ISAs over the years, keeping them all in
one place could give you better control and help you save money
Guide to ISAs
Guide to Lasting Power of Attorney
It is difficult to comprehend that you would
ever lose the ability to manage your own
affairs, but mental and physical incapacity
can happen to anyone at any time. In England and
Wales, a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal
document that allows you to appoint one or more
people to make decisions on your behalf during
The people you appoint to manage your affairs are
called the ‘attorneys’. A LPA is a completely separate
legal document to your Will, although many people
put them in place at the same time as getting their
Will written as part of wanting to plan for the future.
Some people may have the misconception that
by making a LPA, you are giving away control – in
fact, the opposite is true. By preparing in advance
of vulnerability and incapacity, you are able to
detail who you want to help you, how you want to
be helped and when.
Guide to later life care
Have you thought about
the cost of care in later
life? One of the biggest
challenges of the 21st century is
Britain’s ageing population. There
is continually much talk about
later life care in the media, and it’s
a subject that is going to be one of
the biggest social challenges in the
As later life care becomes
more prevalent, whether you
are considering this for yourself
or a relative, the challenge of
covering the costs involved can be
significant. In addition, the options
for funding later life care are
Guide to Life Insurance Protection
The terrifying daily death tolls resulting
from the coronavirus (COVID-19)
pandemic outbreak may be causing
many of us to think about our own mortality,
particularly if we’re responsible for a family or
business loans. In our Guide to Life Insurance
Protection, we consider how suddenly we’re
having to think about things we haven’t thought
about before – including the unthinkable.
Understandably, we would rather not think of
the time when we’re no longer around, but this
crisis has highlighted the importance to protect
the things that really matter – like our loved
ones, home, lifestyle and business – in case the
Guide to Life Insurance Protection
It’s not easy to think about how you would secure
your family’s future if you were no longer around.
Understandably, we would rather not think of
the time when we’re no longer around. But it’s
important to protect the things that really matter
– like our loved ones, home and lifestyle – in case
the unexpected happens.
Guide to Lifestyle Planning
Welcome to our Guide to Lifestyle Planning. Making provision
for a secure future, be it for yourself, your family or your
business, is one of the most important steps you will ever take.
Changes in your circumstances or the effects of inflation will
require you to regularly review and act upon your financial situation.
Whatever your goals are along life’s journey, we’ll help you
keep them within sight. You may want to protect your wealth,
grow it, or spend it in your lifetime. We’ll explore every
aspect of your financial world, taking everything into account
to create a financial plan that works for you.
In our guide, we look at why it’s important to understand
your ambitions, your concerns and your investment attitude to create
a joined-up approach that works as your priorities change and you go
through different life events. Creating a lifestyle planning approach
should bring order and coordination to all areas of your
finances, so you can achieve your lifestyle goals without
fear of running out of money.
Guide to Long Term Care
Rising life expectancy brings with it the challenge of how
we fund our future care costs.
The question is: who is responsible for looking after us
if we need care in old age?
Guide to managing investment risk
One of the most effective ways to manage
investment risk is to spread your money across
a range of assets that, historically, have tended to
perform differently in the same circumstances.
This is called ‘diversification’ – reducing the risk of
your portfolio by choosing a mix of investments.
In the most general sense, there are many
adages: ‘Don’t put all of your eggs in one basket’,
‘Buy low, sell high’, and ‘Bears and bulls make
money, but pigs get slaughtered’. While that
sentiment certainly captures the essence of the
issue, it provides little guidance on the practical
implications of the role that diversification plays
in a portfolio. And, ultimately, there is no such
thing as a ‘one size fits all’ approach.
Guide to New Tax Year Planning
Now that we’ve entered the 2018/19 tax year, a number of key
changes have taken place to existing policies, along with some
newly introduced initiatives. It’s important to consider these tax
implications when making financial decisions.
Guide to New Year Wealth Planning
Welcome to our Guide to New Year Wealth Planning.
The start of a new year enables you to reassess and
critique your financial plans and goals to ensure that
you know where you are and where you should be.
It means you can also put in place new strategies or
update existing ones to achieve the outcomes you are
expecting. It means you can work towards and meet
deadlines and allocate sufficient time to completing
these financial objectives.
When it comes to setting financial goals, they should
be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and
time-bound. Having said this, one of the main reasons
why some people don’t achieve their financial goals is
because of the loss of commitment due to decreased
motivation, lack of interest or changes in priorities.
But most of us want a life full of meaning and
adventure without compromising our financial futures,
and a little pain now in terms of planning can mean we
avoid a whole lot of pain later on.
Guide to Pensions and Divorce
Divorce and pensions are very significant. A pension could be a
couple’s most valuable matrimonial asset, in some cases worth more
than the equity in the family home. As such, it is important that
pensions are considered in the financial settlement if a couple decides to
divorce or dissolve their registered civil partnership. All the money
you’ve saved into it (except for your basic State Pension) will be
taken into account when your assets are divided.
Guide to pensions freedoms
You’ve worked hard for your
retirement, but before you can start
enjoying it, you’ll need to decide
how your pension will provide the income
you need to live on.
In March 2014, the then Chancellor of
the Exchequer, George Osborne, announced
a radical reform of the pensions system to
give people greater flexibility to access their
pension savings. The new pension freedoms
took full effect from 6 April 2015 and have
given retirees a whole host of new options.
There is no longer a compulsory
requirement to purchase an annuity (a
guaranteed income for life for a fixed
number of years) when you retire. The
introduction of pension freedoms brought
about fundamental changes to the way we
can access our pension savings.
Pension freedom rules mean those aged
over 55 no longer have to purchase an
annuity to access their pension income
but can instead enter drawdown or take a
cash amount. There is now much greater
flexibility around how you take your benefits
from Money Purchase Pension (Defined
Contribution) schemes, which includes Self-
Invested Personal Pensions (SIPPs).
Guide to pensions on divorce
A pension is often the largest or second
largest capital asset in a marriage
or registered civil partnership.
However, pensions can be complex
and confusing at the best of times. Frequently,
one person has a substantial pension and the
other might have none or a very limited pension
provision because, for example, they have given
up their job to look after the children. A decision
will need to be made as to whether that pension or
pensions should be shared or if you should receive
more of another asset, such as the home instead.
Guide to planning for your retirement
Welcome to our Guide to Planning
For Your Retirement. When it
comes to planning for retirement,
the earlier you start, the more potential your
money has to grow. Retirement planning is
not simply about paying regularly into your
pension and forgetting about it. Instead, it is
essential to review your progress against your
retirement goals and take account of changes
that may affect your plans.
A critical aspect of retirement planning is
structuring your affairs to ensure that you can
meet your desired level of income when you
stop working. With ever-changing pension
legislation and increasing life expectancy, it
makes sense to use all the tax-efficient options
available to create a flexible retirement plan.
Guide to planning my retirement
Are you ‘mid or late career’ or planning to
retire within ten years? If the answer’s ‘yes’,
then you probably want to know the answers to
these questions: ’Will I be able to retire when
I want to? Will I run out of money? How can I
guarantee the kind of retirement I want?’
A better tomorrow starts with understanding
today. When the future is unclear, the thought
of retirement may well feel more daunting than
exciting. Our retirement planning service can
help you build the wealth you need to achieve
the retirement you deserve.
Few people can visualise their retirement,
but most would hope, at the very least, that it
is a comfortable one. And we all know that, to
achieve this goal, we have to have our finances
in place as early as possible.
Guide to post-Covid-19 retirement planning
Welcome to our Guide to Post-COVID-19
Retirement Planning. Every day the barrage of
COVID-19 news has been unrelenting. The
impulse to react, and to protect what we have, is
understandably strong. The pandemic outbreak
and resulting financial fallout have caused
considerable financial stress for many, making it
difficult to decide about how and when to retire.
The coronavirus pandemic has changed our
concept of retirement and how we make decisions
about our retirement plans based on short-term
events and circumstances, and for many of us,
this will have long-term consequences for our
financial wellbeing and retirement.
Planning for a successful retirement should
open the door to an interconnected approach
rather than product-based solutions. Put simply,
in order to get the best retirement planning
outcomes, it is now necessary to have a strategy
that gives more choices and greater flexibility.
Guide to Protecting your Financial Plan
Welcome to our Guide to Protecting Your Financial
Plan. The right professional financial advice can give
you the freedom to live life on your terms, and key to
this is safeguarding your financial security by making
sure you have adequate protection in place to care for
the people and things that matter.
Guide to protection
Welcome to Guide to Protection Matters. Ensuring that you
have adequate financial protection for you, your family and any
dependants is an important element of financial planning. As
a healthy working person with a good income, you may feel
reasonably confident that you are able to provide for your family.
However, your finances could be more precarious than you think.
No matter what the current economic environment, adhering to a
few sound and well-practiced strategies will help you to prepare
for the future. While your individual situation will always have its
unique qualities, our guide provides suggestions to consider as
you review your family’s long-term protection plans.
Financial protection benefits have become more important as
financial foundations have shifted, government resources have
been strained and costs have climbed. When people need them
most, benefits such as disability, accident, critical illness and
life insurance protect against financial hardships that can derail
their stability. Being prepared for the unexpected will protect
you and your family from sudden and long-term financial
hardship. It goes without saying that we need to enjoy our
wealth today, but at the same time ensure it remains there for us
and our family tomorrow.
Guide to Protection Planning
It’s understandable that we would rather not
think of the time when we’re no longer around.
But it’s important to protect the things that
really matter – like our loved ones, home and
lifestyle – in case the unexpected happens.
We insure our cars, homes and even our
mobile phones – so it goes without saying
that we should also be insured for our full
replacement value to ensure that our loved
ones are financially catered for in the event of
our premature death. Life insurance helps you
to financially protect your family. It could pay
out a cash sum if you die while covered by the
policy. You choose the amount of life cover you
need and how long you need it for, and you can
pay your premiums monthly or annually.
Guide to Retirement Planning
Welcome to our Guide to Retirement Planning.
Pension freedoms have transformed the pension
landscape, giving more choice than ever before in
shaping retirement plans to best meet our individual
needs and circumstances.
Guide to Retirement Planning
Welcome to our Guide to Retirement Planning. In recent years,
retirement has become more about the opportunity to enjoy
your life after work. Your finances are a huge part of achieving
that. With the maximum State Pension currently £8,546.20
(2018/19) a year, you’ll need to decide if this is going to be
enough for you to live on when you retire.
However you see your retirement, it’s important not to worry
about your money running out. We’ll help you to establish
your goals and priorities and review your existing pensions
and investments, calculating expected future income and how
much you might need to contribute.
Guide to retirement planning
Living for another 30 years after work isn’t just a
possibility, it’s a probability. Whether retirement
is many years away or just around the corner, unless
you start planning for retirement now, there is a
great danger that you could outlive your savings.
The earlier you start planning, the easier it will be to
create the retirement lifestyle you want.
As the UK’s population is living longer, planning
in advance for retirement is becoming even more
important. For most of us, the State Pension will not
provide adequate funding in retirement to maintain
the lifestyles we have become accustomed to
during our working lives. Putting in place the right
provision will ensure that you enjoy a comfortable
retirement, free of money worries and with peace of
mind that you will not outlive your funds.
Guide to retirement planning
Welcome to our Guide to Retirement Planning. The pension
freedoms rule changes mean that we’ll be increasingly in charge of
our pensions, both while we’re building up our retirement pot and
when we start to draw an income. It’s therefore more important
than ever to plan our retirement saving from an early age.
At the heart of planning for our retirement
Making sure we have enough money in retirement to enable us
to spend our time the way we want to and doing those things we
always intended is at the heart of planning for our retirement. We
are all living longer, the State Pension Age keeps increasing and
pensions legislation is ever-changing. On the second anniversary
of the pension freedoms reforms that took effect from April 2015,
some retirement savers say they are still confused by the rules and
want no more changes.
Guide to securing your financial future
Welcome to our Guide to Securing your Financial
Future. Life can throw unexpected events and
surprises at us when we are least expecting
it, as we’ve witnessed with the coronavirus
(COVID-19) pandemic outbreak.
We can’t foresee what is waiting around the
corner, but we can ensure that we’re financially
prepared to protect what are the most important
things in life should the worst happen. This
means protecting what matters most, whether
it’s our family, our income, our mortgage or our
health, should the unexpected happen.
It can often be a shock or a horrible realisation
in times of stress or unfortunate events that we
become aware of our exposure to risk, which can
have a considerable financial impact on not only
our lives but on those of our loved ones when a
crisis or situation arises.
Many families would struggle to make ends
meet if a family member developed a serious
illness and couldn’t work or died. This is why it’s
so important to take professional advice to ensure
you have the right level of financial protection
and insurance in place.
Guide to Self-Invested Personal Pensions
With retirement planning, it is
important to take into account the
fact we’re all living longer. Couple
that with the fact that the cost of living continues
to rise and the value of the State Pension
continues to dwindle, this provides a very strong
case for starting to save early for your future.
For appropriate investors, one option is a
Self-Invested Personal Pension (SIPP). A SIPP is
a wrapper for your pension investments and
gives you control of your pension, whereas
most members of a company pension scheme
have very little control and almost no idea
where their pension money is invested.
Guide to Self-invested Personal Pensions
In our Guide to Self-Invested Personal Pensions, we look at how the
retirement landscape over the past few years has fundamentally
changed for the better, giving people more choice and control over
their retirement income. We can help you to structure the right
retirement income for your requirements and help you make the
choices to meet your needs.
Even though saving for retirement is important to Britons, a large
number haven’t started yet. For many, this contributes to a feeling of
confusion around retirement goals.
Currently, according to BlackRock, four in ten Britons haven’t started
saving for retirement. More than half think they either aren’t on track to
reach their retirement income goals or have no idea.
Guide to setting financial goals
Taking control of our financial life
requires planning, and that starts
with setting financial goals. Setting
short-term, mid-term and long-term financial
goals is an important step towards becoming
financially secure and independent.
We all have different financial goals and
aspirations in life. Yet often, these goals can
seem out of reach. In today’s complex financial
environment, achieving our financial goals
may not be that straightforward. This is where
financial planning is essential to help secure
your financial future.
A financial plan seeks to identify your
financial goals, prioritise them, and then
outline the exact steps that you need to take
to achieve your goals. Figuring out your
objectives and matching them with timelines
are the keys to setting financial goals. Your
financial goals are specific and unique to a
number of factors related to you, like your age,
your interests, current financial situation and
your aspirations. Based on these, you need
to develop your goals and establish a plan to
If your New Year’s resolutions include giving
your financial plans an overhaul, here are our
financial planning tips to help you create a
robust financial plan for 2020 and beyond.
Guide to setting investment goals
Creating and maintaining the right
investment strategy plays a vital role
in securing your financial future. How
much control do you want over your investments?
Do you prefer to be in charge, or do you want
someone to invest for you? Volatile markets can
test your nerves. We can advise you on solutions
to help you meet your investment goals so that
you weather the markets by keeping your portfolio
diverse. So what do you need to consider?
Guide to shareholder and partnership protection
If your business partner or a
shareholder died or became
critically ill, have you ever
thought what the impact could be?
The loss of a business partner
or a shareholder can have a major
impact on the success of any
business. But it’s not just about the
loss of profits the business could
suffer. Who would take their place?
Not only in performing their dayto-
day duties, but also in making
decisions of how your business is
run in the future.
Guide to Stock Market Turbulence
The overall direction of developed stock markets is a relentless and
continual rise in value over the very long term, punctuated by falls.
It’s important not to let global uncertainties affect your financial
planning for the years ahead. Individuals who stop their investment
planning, particularly during market downturns, can often miss out
on opportunities to invest at lower prices.
Guide to Stocks and Shares ISAs
If you’re starting to think about investing,
Individual Savings Account (ISAs) could be
a good place to start. For many people,
one way to invest in stocks and shares is
through an ISA. But there’s no substitute for
professional financial advice, which is essential
to ensure that an assessment of your personal
circumstances and attitude to risk is made
before making investment decisions. So
whether you’re a novice or an experienced
investor, we can help you get the most from
your 2017/2018 ISA allowance.
Guide to Tax matters
In this guide we set out the main tax changes that apply to the 2019/20 tax year, which commenced on 6 April 2019. Reviewing your tax affairs to ensure that available reliefs and exemptions have been utilised, together with future planning, can help to reduce your tax bill. Personal circumstances differ, so if you have any questions or if there is a particular area you are interested in, please do not hesitate to contact us. Increases to the tax-free personal allowance announced in last year’s Budget have now also come into effect, alongside a number of other proposals. We’ve provided our summary of the key changes.
Guide to tax year end planning
Tax is never a one-size-fits-all approach: each
taxpayer and each year will be different. And
with the current tax year-end approaching, this
is a perfect time to carry out a tax health check
and implement any planning opportunities
before the end of the 2019/20 tax year.
There are a number of valuable allowances
and reliefs that will be lost if they are not
used before the deadline. These opportunities
include, but are not limited to, these four
important areas of tax planning that
should be considered. We’ve summarised
these allowances below and suggest that, if
appropriate to your particular situation, these
areas should be reviewed before 5 April 2020.
We’ve provided our top end-of-year tax tips
to help you save time and money on your taxes.
Guide to the Budget 2016
Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne delivered his eighth Budget speech on
Wednesday 16 March, his third in 12 months. In our summary of the key announcements, we
consider how they could impact on your finances today and in future years to come.
Guide to the effects of Covid-19 on Retirement Planning
In our Guide to the Effects of COVID-19 on
Retirement Planning, as the coronavirus
pandemic continues to dominate world
headlines, we consider how this may affect
individuals’ financial plans for retirement.
A significant number of people aged over
50 and in work are potentially considering
delaying retirement (15%) by an average
of three years, or will continue working
indefinitely on a full or part-time basis (26%),
as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic,
according to new research.
Guide to the Lifetime Allowance
The Government has introduced comprehensive reforms to the
pension rules over the previous few years.
One important change, which may have been overlooked
by some savers, is the reduction of the Lifetime
Allowance that applies to pension savings.
This further reduction means that you may be affected.
Guide to the Lifetime ISA
The start of the new tax year on 6 April 2017 saw the launch of the
Lifetime ISA (LISA), which was announced in the 2016 Budget.
This is a new type of Individual Savings Account (ISA) designed to help
you save for a first home or for your retirement at the same time. To be eligible,
you have to be aged between 18 and 39 years old
(up until your 40th birthday).
Guide to the LISA
In the March 2016 Budget, the Chancellor announced major
improvements to Individual Savings
Accounts (ISAs) with the introduction of a new
Lifetime Individual Savings Account (LISA) from
April 2017, designed to help young people save flexibly
for the long term throughout their lives.
The aim is to help them simultaneously save
for a first home and for their retirement without having
to choose one over the other.
Guide to the new Inheritance tax rules
Although often in the news, Inheritance
Tax (IHT) is still not widely understood.
That’s worrying, because it affects
thousands of families every year. If you thought
IHT was just for extremely wealthy people to
worry about, think again. The amount of IHT
collected has doubled over the last five years.
The Government is introducing a new IHT
allowance, adding an extra tax-free amount when
you own a property. But, without the right advice
and careful financial planning, HM Revenue
& Customs could become the single largest
beneficiary of your estate following your death.
Guide to the new State Pension
The State Pension changed on 6 April 2016. If you reached
State Pension age on or after that date,
you’ll now receive the new State Pension under
the new rules. The aim of the new State Pension is to
make it simpler to understand, but there are some
complicated changeover arrangements which you
need to know about if you’ve already made
contributions under the previous system.
Guide to understanding investment risk
There are many decisions to consider
when making any investment. One of
these is how much risk you are prepared
to take. This will be determined by a number of
different factors. In this guide, we take a look at the
different types of investment risk and how it can
relate to returns.
Your appetite for risk will depend on your life
stage and whether you want to grow your money
over the long term or need to draw a regular
income. Usually, your age and relative proximity to
retirement will determine whether you’re investing
for the short term (one to three years), medium
term (three to five years) or long term (more than
Guide to Wealth Creation
Guide to Wealth Preservation
Welcome to our Guide to Wealth Preservation. Our advice can help you preserve and protect the wealth you’ve amassed through hard work, inheritance or good fortune. Inside our guide, we look at the number of key areas that will enable you to put in place an effective protection planning strategy to preserve and protect your wealth for you and future generations. We understand that peace of mind for the future is essential. You’ve worked hard to build and grow your wealth; it’s only natural to put in place measures to protect it. But unforeseen life events and circumstances can potentially impact your finances in a number of ways. We can help you to safeguard your wealth today and for future generations and organise it to support your needs and goals.
Guide to Year End Planning
It’s important to take the time to give your finances a year-end
check-up. The 2017/18 tax year ends on 5 April 2018, with the new
tax year beginning the following day, on 6 April. These are
important dates for financial planning, so it’s important
you don’t miss the chance to make the
most of valuable tax-efficiencies and allowances.
Guide to Year End Tax
Guide to year end tax planning
We should all be thinking about tax
planning throughout the course of
a year, but this year we have been
distracted by the impact of the coronavirus
(COVID-19) pandemic on our lives. We have
listed below a few reminders of the issues you
may want to consider as worthy of including in
your 2020/21 tax planning to-do list.
Income protection insurance
How would you pay the bills if you were sick or injured and couldn’t work?
Investing and inflation
Rising inflation is a concern to investors, as changes in
inflation and interest rates affect various asset types in
different ways. This is an especially important issue for
retirees living on a fixed income.
Is it time to get more flexible with your money?
Remove the cap on the retirement income you can take
ISA Guide 2010/2011
You have until 5 April to use this tax year’s allowance or you’ll lose it forever
Have you provided a financial safety net for your loved ones?
Making a Will
Make sure you avoid unnecessary legal complications and emotional hardship
More than six million Britons over 50 look set to retire on less than minimum wage
Do you know how to make the right choices when taking your pension benefits?
Keeping track of your pension portfolio to get the best out of the contributions you’ve made
Planning for retirement
What income should you aim for to maintain your current lifestyle?
Protecting You and Your Estate
Protecting your estate is ultimately about securing more of your wealth for your loved ones and
planning for what will happen after your death to make the lives of your loved ones much easier.
Protecting yourself against scams
Fraudsters are getting more deceitful and ever more successful.
Pension and investment scams are on the increase in the UK.
Everyday fraudsters are using sophisticated ways to part savers from
their money, and the Internet and advances in digital communications
mean these kinds of scams are getting more common and harder to
identify. A lifetime’s savings can be lost in moments.
The Retail Distribution Review (RDR), from January 1 2013, aims to make the financial services industry fairer to the customer.
Reducing your investment risk
Do you want to create a wider spread for your portfolio?
Saving and investing for a child’s future
Whether you want to teach your
children or grandchildren smart
money-management strategies, help
them pay for university or set them up for financial
success as adults, it’s important to jump-start
saving and investing for them early on.
Whether it is saving for school or university
education, or to provide a deposit on a first home,
giving your children or grandchildren a good start
in life is among most people’s top priorities.
As a parent, guardian or grandparent, you’ll want
to provide the best future for them. Christmas is
an excellent time to encourage children to start
thinking about the value of money. Many children
have hundreds of pounds spent on them at
Christmas. But could that money be put to better
use? Rather than buying yet more toys for your
children or grandchildren, why not consider setting
up a tax-efficient Junior ISA for them?
Self-Invested Personal Pensions
Would you like to take more control over your pension fund investment decisions?
SmartMoney Jan Feb 2017
Last year was the year of seismic election
results, both in the UK and the US, which will
determine the national and international
political and financial landscape for decades to
come. After a long and brutal US presidential
election campaign, Donald Trump emerged
victorious as the surprise victor. His
inauguration is scheduled for Friday 20 January
when he’ll become the 45th President of the
United States. On page 04, we consider who are
likely to be the winners and losers.
The 2016/17 Year End for tax planning
purposes is now only a matter of months away
with the deadline approaching on 5 April. Effective
tax planning is about knowing the personal and
business taxes you are liable to pay and acting to
legally minimise them. It is also about maximising
your net income and creating opportunities to
invest and save tax-efficiently for the current and
future needs of your business, your family and
yourself. Turn to page 06 to read the full article.
After a game-changing 2016, the investment
environment was not only mixed but
characterised by uneven global growth. On page
08, we look ahead to this year’s gradual repair of
the global economy and greater political clarity
in the USA which should allow investors to take
advantage of opportunities in 2017.
SmartMoney Jan Feb 2018
Welcome to our first edition of 2018.
The New Year is the perfect time
to overhaul your life for the better,
and one excellent place to start is by making
solid financial resolutions that can help get
you closer to your money goals, whether it’s
increasing your retirement provision, looking
to mitigate a potential Inheritance Tax bill or
reviewing your level of protection in the event
of an unexpected event.
SmartMoney Jan Feb 2019
In this New Year edition, the start of 2019 is
the optimum time when you may be thinking
about resolutions and plans for the year ahead
and beyond. It’s a good time to start planning
your tax affairs before the end of the tax year on
5 April. And as you think about 2019 and your
goals for the coming year, we’ll help to start you
off on the right financial footing. Turn to page 04
to find out more.
As part of our continuing look at tax-efficient
saving and investing, on page 06, we shine
a spotlight on some of the different options
available. Whether you consider yourself a savvy
investor or a financial novice – and no matter
what, why or how you want to save and invest
– an Individual Savings Account (ISA) could help
make your money work harder for you.
You may want to keep an element of control
when passing on your assets. You may want
your money to be used for a particular reason,
such as paying for school or university fees
or for a first property deposit. Or you may
just want to make sure your money stays
within the family. On page 11, we explain how
intergenerational planning will help.
Plus, women will now start to qualify for the
State Pension at the same age as men, currently
set at 65. On page 03, we look at how the move
to equalise male and female pension ages
began 25 years ago and has been gradually
SmartMoney Jan Feb 2020
Welcome to our first edition for 2020. Inside
this issue, we feature articles covering a number of
different topics to help you successfully grow and
protect your wealth.
Whether it’s stopping smoking, losing weight,
eating more healthily or getting fitter, most of us have
probably made at least one New Year’s resolution,
but how many of us will actually go on to achieve it?
We all have different financial goals and aspirations in
life, yet these goals can often seem out of reach. On
page 04, if your New Year’s resolutions include giving
your financial plans an overhaul, we’ve provided our
financial planning tips to help you create a robust
financial plan for 2020 and beyond.
Estate planning is an important part of wealth
management, no matter how much wealth you
have built up. It’s the process of making a plan for
how your assets will be distributed upon your death
or incapacitation. On page 08, we consider why
having an effective estate plan in place will not only
help to ensure that those you care about the most
will be taken care of when you’re no longer around,
but it can also help minimise Inheritance Tax (IHT)
liabilities and ensure that assets are transferred in an
SmartMoney January February 2021
Welcome to our first edition for 2021. In a year
of renewal, hopefully we’ll see a world that is steadily
returning to normal, while also rapidly accelerating into
a transformed future.
Although lockdown restrictions are easing, the
coronavirus (COVID!19) pandemic will continue to
impact on our lives in many ways. Where will we be in
six months, a year, ten years from now? One thing is
certain, COVID!19 has reshaped all of our futures.
This global pandemic created overwhelming
anxiety. Many people are anxious not just about
the virus, but the resulting financial pressure and
uncertainty. Getting our financial life in order will be
a top priority for many as we enter 2021. On page
06 we focus on two key areas: goals related to being
prepared for the unexpected this year, and those
related to what you want to be different at the end
of the year.
SmartMoney July August
Welcome to our latest edition. If a week
in politics is a long time, then the eight
weeks of general election campaigning
seemed like an eternity.
Prime Minister Theresa May’s snap UK
election surprised many people. Despite
polls narrowing substantially over
the course of the election campaign,
a Conservative-led government was
considered the most likely result by
investment markets. After weeks of
campaigning – and with no outright winner
– a hung parliament was declared. On
page 06, we consider why investors should
keep focused on their long-term financial
goals and not panic following this period of
With the UK’s population ageing, more
people will be living with long-term care
needs. Oscar Wilde once said: ‘The tragedy
of old age is not that one is old, but that one
is young.’ But the good news of rising life
expectancy also brings with it the challenge
of how we fund our future care costs. The
question is: who is responsible for looking
after us if we need care in old age? Turn to
page 04 to read the full article.
Millions of workers across the UK could
be heading for a significant shortfall in
the amount of pension they need for an
adequate income. The World Economic
Forum has issued a warning that calls on the
Government to impose faster pension-age
rises as it earmarks the UK as one of several
countries facing a ‘pension time bomb’. Turn
to page 03.
SmartMoney July August 2016
Welcome to our latest issue. At the time
of going to print, the outcome of the EU
Referendum – to decide whether Britain
should leave or remain in the European
Union – had not been announced so
we’re unable to offer our commentary in
this issue, but we’ll assess the outcome
and the impact on your financial plans
in the next issue.
‘Will I be able to afford the retirement lifestyle
I want?’ is a question that many people ask
but struggle to figure out. On page 04, we
consider the ways to assess your likely income
in retirement and how much you need to put
away now to enjoy the kind of lifestyle you want
in later life. Funding a comfortable retirement will
be the biggest financial priority for many people,
yet some people spend more time planning their
holiday than their own retirement – perhaps
because planning for retirement seems too
complicated to think about?
If you’ve accumulated numerous workplace
pensions over the years from different
employers, it can be difficult to keep track
of how they are performing. The process of
bringing all your pensions together is called
‘consolidation’. It is often referred to as a
transfer. If you have more than one pension
pot, you might want to consider consolidating
all of your pots into one for simplicity. You may
also benefit from lower charges by doing this.
Read the full article on page 11.
Deciding what to do with your pension
savings is an important step we will all have
to take. Following changes introduced in April
2015, on page 08 we look at how you now have
more choice and flexibility than ever before
over how and when you can take money from
your pension pot. These changes give you
freedom over how you can use your pension
pot(s) if you’re 55 or over and have a pension
based on how much has been paid into your
pot (a defined contribution scheme).
SmartMoney July August 2018
Have you ever thought about writing a
letter to yourself to describe your ideal
future life, long-term life goals and the
process of how to plan for them? On page
04, we look at how imagining what you
want your life to be like in the long term
when you retire can help you think much
further ahead than you might ever have
If you have accumulated a number
of Individual Savings Accounts (ISAs)
over the years, keeping them all in one
place could give you better control
and help you save money. There’s a
common misconception that you can’t
move existing ISAs from one provider to
another. Turn to page 03 to find out more.
At some point, you’ll say ‘goodbye’ to
your co-workers, get into your car and
drive towards the next phase of your
life – retirement. But when will that be?
On page 06, we consider your move
to retirement – it’s one of the most
important decisions you’ll ever make, so
it’s not surprising that determining the
date is harder than you may expect.
SmartMoney July August 2019
Inside, you’ll find an array of articles about how
we can help you further to plan, grow, protect and
preserve your wealth. As we all know, the ultimate
goal money can buy is financial freedom.
Volatility fluctuates based on where we are in
the economic cycle, but it is a normal feature of
markets that investors should expect. From the
unfathomable Brexit playbook and the continued
prominence of populist ideology, to unconventional
US foreign policy and the retirement of Draghi, the
highly respected European Central Bank president,
uncertainty prevails. On page 6, we consider why it
is essential not to panic and to keep a perspective
when markets are turbulent.
SmartMoney July August 2020
Welcome to our latest issue. A return to how life
was at the start of 2020 is some way o!. Even now
that lockdown restrictions are starting to be eased,
coronavirus (COVID”19) will continue to affect our lives
in many ways.
Whether you have earned your wealth, inherited it
or made shrewd investments, you will want to ensure
that as little of it as possible ends up in the hands of the
taxman and that it can be enjoyed by you, your family
and your intended beneficiaries. On page 10, we look
at why, without an appropriate estate plan, your family
may end up spending a substantial amount of time and
money battling over your assets if you pass away.
The COVID”19 pandemic has had a dramatic effect
on the global economy. Around the world, economic
activity has dried up. Fewer consumers are buying
and fewer companies are investing. But if you take the
view that inflation will start to go up in the long term,
on page 06 we look at why it is worth considering
whether your savings and investments could be
affected. After all, you need your investments, and
the income from them, to keep pace with inflation to
maintain the value of your buying power.
SmartMoney Magazine Sep-Oct 2020
Welcome to our latest issue. As the world continues
to work out how to live with the coronavirus
(COVID-19) pandemic, many will agree that the new
normal needs new thinking.
The pandemic has unleashed changes that seemed
unthinkable only six months ago. Along with the
health, safety and well-being of family, friends and
loved ones, the new normal has also highlighted the
need for financial guidance and support during this
Saving into a pension is one of the most tax-efficient
ways to save for your retirement. Not only do pensions
enable you to grow your retirement savings largely free
of tax, but they also provide tax relief on the contributions
you make. On page 10, we look at the various pension
allowances that you need to be aware of and help you
understand how to make the most of them.
SmartMoney Mar Apr 2019
SmartMoney March April 2018
Welcome to our latest edition.
Whether you are looking to create,
protect or preserve your wealth for
future generations, inside this issue we look at
areas you may wish to discuss with us.
Trying to second-guess the impact of events such
as Brexit or the recent stock market correction – or
even attempting to make a bet on them – rarely
pays off. Instead, investors who focus on long-term
horizons – at least five to ten years – have
historically fared much better. It’s important not to
let current global uncertainties affect your financial
planning for the years ahead. On page 06, we look
at why investors need to stick to their strategies and
keep moving ahead consistently by spreading risk
and growing their wealth for the long term.
Without professional advice and careful financial
planning, HM Revenue & Customs can become the
single largest beneficiary of your estate following
your death. On page 04, we consider the findings
of a recent survey about Inheritance Tax that shows
many wealthy Britons over the age of 45 are either
ignoring estate planning solutions or they have
forgotten about the benefits these can provide.
How prepared are you for any financial shocks?
SmartMoney March April 2020
Welcome to our latest edition. At the time
of writing this issue, Sajid Javid had resigned as
Chancellor of the Exchequer with less than a month
to go until Budget Day. His replacement, Rishi Sunak,
will deliver the Budget on 11 March 2020. In our next
issue, we’ll look at the key Budget announcements
and how they could affect your finances.
Some of the questions our clients almost always
ask us are: ‘Will I be able to retire when I want to?
Will I run out of money? How can I guarantee the
kind of retirement I want?’ Worryingly, it’s been well
documented that many Britons aren’t saving enough
in their pension for their retirement. On page 08,
figures published by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC)
in September 2019 show that the annual average
contributions that every individual makes decreased
in 2017/18 compared to 2016/17. We look at what you
need to consider when saving for retirement.
Each tax year, we are given an annual
Individual Savings Account (ISA) allowance.
Anyone wishing to utilise their allowance
should do so before the deadline on
Wednesday 5 April 2017. The date marks
the end of the 2016/17 tax year. It is a ‘use
it or lose it’ allowance, meaning that if you
don’t use all or part of it in one tax year, you
cannot take that allowance over to the next
year. On page 06, we consider your options.
The UK’s decision to leave the EU has
left over two million people planning to
change their retirement plans, according
to findings from a survey by LV= that
commissioned Opinium Research. It’s
undoubtedly a thought-provoking time
for many approaching retirement, and it
means it’s even more difficult for retirees
to know what is right for them. On page
08, we consider the importance of having
access to professional financial guidance and
regulated financial advice at a time when you
are deciding how you will receive an income
for the remainder of your life.
SmartMoney May June 2016
Welcome to our latest issue in which we look
at the major talking points that could impact
on your financial plans both today and in the
future, especially as we enter a new financial
year and take stock of the announcements
from Budget 2016 – and then there’s the
matter of ‘Brexit’.
With an increasing focus on ‘Brexit’, our
investment clients will naturally be monitoring
the impact on financial markets ahead of the
referendum scheduled for Thursday 23 June.
The nature of investment is long term. On
page 08, we look at why constantly making
changes to take into account short-term
events often proves to be counterproductive
in the long term. Movements in currencies
and shares are often fairly short-lived, as the
result of the Scottish referendum showed.
The State Pension changed on 6 April 2016.
If you reach State Pension age on or after
that date, you’ll now receive the new State
Pension under the new rules. The aim of the
new State Pension is to make it simpler to
understand. But there are some complicated
changeover arrangements which you need
to know about if you’ve already made
contributions under the previous system.
Read the full article on page 23.
The introduction of the new Lifetime
Individual Savings Account (LISA) next year is
aimed at helping young people save flexibly
for the long term throughout their lives, and
simultaneously enabling them to save for a
first home and for their retirement without
having to choose one over the other. Find out
more on page 06.
SmartMoney May June 2018
Welcome to our latest edition.
We aim to help you create the
lifestyle you want and believe
that anything is possible if you manage
your finances in the right way.
Inside this issue, we look at why it’s important to
consider the tax implications of making financial
decisions. The 2018/19 tax year is now upon us, and
a raft of new changes have come into force. The
good news is that there is little change in the overall
tax burden for basic-rate taxpayers. However, there
are number of areas that have changed that should
be taken note of. On page 08, we look at what you
need to know about the 2018/19 tax year changes
and new initiatives.
By the time we have been working for a decade
or two, it is not uncommon to have accumulated
multiple pension plans. There’s no wrong time to
start thinking about pension consolidation, but you
might find yourself thinking about it if you’re starting
a new job or nearing retirement. Turn to page 12 to
read the full article.
If you struggle to navigate the UK’s Inheritance
Tax regime, you are not alone. Whether you are
setting up your estate planning or sorting out the
estate of a departed family member, the system
can be hard to follow. On page 04, we look at
how getting your planning wrong could also mean
your family is faced with an unexpectedly high
Inheritance Tax bill.
Forget the Lamborghini – 2.4 million UK
grandparents have either raided their pension to
support their grandchildren, or plan to in the future.
On page 11, we look at research that shows a
quarter of generous grandparents have already
given away money to their grandchildren and have
taken the funds from their pension.
SmartMoney May June 2019
At the time of writing this issue, the uncertainty around the terms of Brexit have been extended to a new deadline set for 31 October. All we can do is expect the best, prepare for the worst and capitalise on what comes. Inheritance Tax is no longer something that only affects the very wealthy, but the good news is that there are ways to limit the amount of Inheritance Tax your family may potentially face. You worked hard to earn your wealth, so let us work hard preserving it. On page 06, we look at how you can help your family maintain its financial strength from one generation to the next. You want to pay the minimum amount of tax legally possible. We want that for you, too. The 2019/20 tax year started on 6 April and, in general, taxpayers will have more money in their pocket after increases to allowances came into force. However, there are a few losers, in particular those selling shares and buy-to-let landlords. To find out more, turn to page 03. Making a Will is very important if you care what happens to your money and your belongings after you die, and most of us do. On page 11, we consider why discussing your Will with beneficiaries means they are better prepared when the time comes, even though you may be nervous about raising the topic
SmartMoney May-June 2020
Welcome to our latest issue. It has been a very
challenging time for many of our clients, their families,
their employees and the wider business community.
During this difficult time, we hope you’re staying
safe. The ongoing news of the impact of the
coronavirus pandemic and how it is affecting everyone
is a huge concern for us all. Understandably, people
are worried about the general economic outlook and
their own personal finances.
The Government’s actions to help businesses
and households manage the short-term economic
disruption, such as interest rate cuts and rescue
packages, have been positively received, but the
intended consequences are yet to materialise.
The Government has created new legal powers in
the COVID-19 Bill, enabling it to offer whatever further
financial support it thinks necessary to support
businesses. On 17 March, the Chancellor, Rishi
Sunak, announced an unprecedented package of
government-backed and guaranteed loans to support
businesses, making available an initial £330 billion of
guarantees – equivalent to 15% of the country’s GDP.
This was on top of a series of measures announced at
Budget 2020. The Government announced £30 billion
of additional support for public services, individuals and
businesses experiencing financial difficulties because of
COVID-19, including a new £5 billion COVID-19 Response
Fund to provide any extra resources needed by the NHS
and other public services to tackle the virus.
SmartMoney Nov Dec 2017
Welcome to the final issue for
2017, featuring news, opinion,
insights and analysis to help
you navigate the complexities of today’s
Inside this issue, we talk about estate planning,
which is an extremely emotional subject as people
generally don’t like talking about money or death.
On page 10, we comment on new research that
shows some people would like to talk about this
subject but haven’t found the right time or just don’t
know where to start. This is worrying considering
Inheritance Tax receipts increased by 22.9% in the
first quarter of this tax year, according to data from
the Office for National Statistics.
If you’re still working, what kind of life would you
like to lead when you’ve said goodbye to the 9-to-5?
On page 04, we look at the importance of saving for
retirement and how to turbocharge your pension if
you want the financial freedom to enjoy your later
years. After all, you’ll still want to do all the things
you love now – and probably a few others too.
As part of Budget 2017, Chancellor Philip
Hammond announced an extra £2 billion of funding
for social care and paved the way for major changes
to how people pay for it. But people in the UK are
still underestimating the cost of elderly care every
year, according to new research. Turn to page 06 to
read the full article.
The full list of the articles featured in this issue
appears on page 02.
To ensure your wealth is working for you or to
discuss any of the articles featured inside this issue,
please contact us.
SmartMoney Nov Dec 2018
Welcome to our latest edition and our
customary collection of articles designed to help
you create and protect your wealth to be able to
experience life to the full.
As a parent, guardian or grandparent, you’ll
want to provide the best future for your children
or grandchildren that you can. Christmas is an
excellent time to encourage children to start
thinking about the value of money. Many children
have hundreds of pounds spent on them at
Christmas, but could that money be put to better
use? Turn to page 04.
Although the current tax year does not end
until 5 April 2019, tax planning shouldn’t be a mad
March rush. Now is the perfect time to get a head
start on your tax planning resolutions to enhance
your own, your family’s or your company’s taxefficient
plans for the future. On page 03 opposite,
we have set out some tax tips and actions that
may be appropriate to certain taxpayers.
Throughout our lives, we will have many
different lifestyle and financial goals that we
would like to achieve. Although we all have
different goals, there are some key goals
that we’ll have in common, especially when
it comes to retirement. What do you want
from your investments? Supplementing your
income? Building your retirement pot? Read
more on page 06.
A pound saved is a pound earned. But thanks to
inflation, over time, the value of the pound saved
could be much less than when it was earned.
One cannot ignore the corrosive impact of rising
prices on investments. On page 11, we look at ways
investors can easily fail to prepare for the risk of
inflation eroding the purchasing power of money,
especially in a low-inflation environment.
A full list of the articles featured in this issue
appears opposite – we hope you enjoy them.
SmartMoney November December 2019
Welcome to our latest edition. Inside this issue,
we look at a number of the topical financial planning
stories making the news agenda.
Creating and maintaining the right investment
strategy plays a vital role in securing your financial
future. But we live in the era of the 24-hour news
cycle, and ‘bad news sells’. The investment world can
be unpredictable and investors currently have plenty
of bad news to process, with a plethora of events
making the daily and even hourly news headlines
– from the US-China trade conflict and oil price
volatility, to Britain’s exit from the European Union.
On page 06, we consider why it’s important to stay
positive and focus on your investment goals.
Once we enter January, the end of the 2019/20 tax
year will be just over three months away on 5 April.
As this date approaches, the window of opportunity
reduces if you want to make the most of valuable
allowances, reliefs and exemptions that could help
reduce your tax bill and make sure your finances
stay tax-efficient. Read the full article on page 04.
On 3 October, campaigners lost a significant legal
battle against the Government’s handling of the rise
in women’s State Pension age. The retirement age
for women has increased from 60 to 65, in line with
men, and will go up to 66 by 2020, and to 67 by
2028. Nearly four million women have been affected
by these changes. On page 08, we consider the
impact of the High Court’s decision.
SmartMoney Sept – Oct 2017
Welcome to our latest issue. Will you
be one of the six million workers who
will have to work an extra year before
retiring after the Government announced
that it would be extending the retirement
age to 68?
SmartMoney September October
As the poet and playwright Oscar Wilde
once commented, ‘When I was young I
thought that money was the most important
thing in life; now that I am old I know that it
is.’ And with these pertinent words in mind,
inside this issue we look at a number of
topics designed to keep you up to date and
help you plan to meet any changes in your
life and financial circumstances.
For most people over the age of 55, it is now
possible to cash in or unlock all of your pension.
How you take these benefits will depend on
the type of scheme you have and how you
want to take benefits. On page 06, we consider
the concerns that have been raised that some
savers may risk running out of cash if they
siphon too much out of their pension pots.
For those looking to make the world a better
place but not wanting to sacrifice returns or
profits, impact investing aims to support a
positive social or environmental impact, as
well as looking to achieve compelling financial
returns at the heart of sustainable investing. Turn
to page 11 to read the full article.
Exactly how much you’ll need for a
comfortable retirement will depend largely on
your cost of living and lifestyle choices. For
many people, retirement is about sun-soaked
holidays, leisurely rounds of golf and that boat
they’ve always coveted. On page 04, we look at
why you need to reassess your own situation.
Also inside this issue on page 12, the number
of taxpaying pensioners has nearly doubled
over the last two decades. With talk of also
requiring pensioners to pay National Insurance
on any earnings or even on pensions, the older
population may start thinking of themselves as
‘Generation still taxed’.
SmartMoney September October 2016
Welcome to our latest issue. We hope
you enjoy reading this issue as we
approach the run-up to another year
end and those long hot summer days
start to become a distant memory. For
many of us, our thoughts are turned to
another year that has flown past – and
when we talk about financial planning,
it is time that is the enemy.
Going back a little further, the Government
has introduced some major and
comprehensive reforms to the pension rules
over the previous few years. One important
change, which may have been overlooked by
some savers, is the reduction of the lifetime
allowance that applies to pension savings.
The lifetime allowance is the total amount
you can hold within all your pensions without
incurring an additional tax charge. Turn to
page 06 to read the full article.
We are now living in a more uncertain world.
As correlations between asset classes rise, the
right strategy is crucial to preserve capital when
markets are falling. Add to this the result of the
European Union (EU) referendum, which came as
a shock to financial markets, and many investors
are facing new challenges at every turn. On page
04, we consider what you can do to manage your
investments in current markets.
From the old adage of saving for a rainy day
to planning for a comfortable retirement, before
you can actually define your investing goals you
need to ask yourself what you want to achieve.
While deciding on the best fund, tax regime,
pension or investment is a necessary part of
the financial planning process, it’s crucial to
understand what these mean to you – and your
lifestyle makes it more relevant and real. Turn to
page 09 to find out more.
SmartMoney September October 2019
Welcome to the latest issue. At the time of writing,
the UK Government said it is ‘ready and willing’ to do
a deal to leave the EU if new terms are negotiated
with Brussels. But the new Prime Minister, Boris
Johnson, has vowed the UK will leave the EU ‘come
what may’ by 31 October – the date the UK must
depart if no deal has been reached.
Even though we don’t definitively know what
the impact of Brexit will be on both the UK’s and
other countries’ economies, it doesn’t mean this is
necessarily a bad time to invest internationally. Any
well-run investment portfolio should include exposure
to companies from around the world. This gives
investors access to a greater range of opportunities
and allows portfolios to be insulated from any shocks
that could affect individual economies.
Can you guarantee on always being there for those who depend on you?
The value of insurance to protect your income
Just 15 per cent of workers have any form of insurance against ill health
Should you spread your capital across different investment vehicles?
Will your legacy involve just leaving a large Inheritance Tax bill for your loved ones?
Have you made provision for financial protection that lasts for the rest of your life?