We take the time to find out about you

In times of turbulent markets and changing tax legislation, you want to be certain your future is adequately planned for. That is why, rather than offering clients an off-the-shelf financial planning solution, we take the time to find out about you, your current financial situation and your short-, medium- and long-term goals. Only then will we make firm recommendations about how you should plan for your future.

Business taxes given some respite

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne MP, said in his emergency Budget speech that he wants a sign to go up over the British economy saying ‘Open for Business’.

Commenting, Richard Lambert, Confederation of British Industry (CBI) Director-General, said there was clear recognition in the Budget of the role that business needs to play in getting the economy back into shape and generating the jobs and wealth needed to sustain economic recovery.

Alternative homes for your nest eggs

The Bank of England’s decision to keep interest rates low means that many savers will now receive virtually no return from their money. As a result, many will be looking for alternative homes for their nest eggs. If you are considering building a portfolio of income-producing funds, your first priority should be to decide the level of risk you’re happy with and the investment term. Let’s consider some of the options available.

Has your need for protection changed?

Most people fully understand the need to protect their valuables, but when it comes to protecting their ability to provide for their loved ones after their death, this can get overlooked. In the event of your premature death, having the correct level of life assurance will ensure that your dependants are able to cope financially and their lifestyle is protected.

Risk is an implicit aspect OF investing

When deciding whether to invest, it is important that any investment vehicle matches your feelings and preferences in relation to investment risk and return. Hence your asset allocation needs to be commensurate with your attitude to risk. Another key question to ask yourself is: ‘How comfortable would I be facing a short-term loss in order to have the opportunity to make long-term gains?’ If your answer is that you are not prepared to take any risk whatsoever, then investing in the stock market is not for you.

What are you trying to achieve with your investments?

There are different types of risk involved with investing, so it’s important to find out what they are and think about how much risk you’re willing to take. It all depends on your attitude to risk (how much risk you are prepared to take) and what you are trying to achieve with your investments.

Valuing an estate for inheritance tax

Helping you protect your wealth is an important part of what we do, and one thing is certain, you need to plan to protect your wealth from a potential Inheritance Tax (IHT) liability. Benjamin Franklin once said that ‘nothing is certain but death and taxes’, and thanks to IHT, they’re not only certain, they’re intrinsically linked. Once only the domain of the very wealthy, the wide-scale increase in home ownership and rising property values over the past decade have pushed many estates over the IHT threshold. However, in recent years we have also seen property price reductions.

A principled approach

Green investors have been rewarded for their principled approach after it was revealed that the performance of the ethical funds sector had improved over the past year.

The latest survey from Moneyfacts showed that ethical investment funds had enjoyed strong returns over the last 12 months. The Ethical Investment Research Service (EIRIS) also recently revealed that investments into green and ethical funds in the UK had hit a record high.

Sector remains strongly buoyant

While average buy-to-let rents across the UK may have fallen or remained stable over the past year, one sector that remains strongly buoyant is the student buy-to-let sector, according to the latest data from property investment specialist Assetz.

What would happen if you were unable to work?

Buying a home is probably the largest financial commitment you are likely to make. If you’re worried about what would happen if you were unable to work and couldn’t meet your monthly mortgage repayments, due to unemployment or an unexpected accident or illness – you can protect yourself against these events with a payment protection (or ASU) policy.

Mortgage market remains stuck in the doldrums

Mortgage lenders have warned once more of the funding gap they face which may impact on the property market for years to come. The Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) revealed gross lending in the first three months of this year was the lowest since early 2000. While house prices may be rising rapidly in some areas, gross lending of £29.5bn is down 9 per cent on the same period a year ago.

Achieving the most efficient mix of risk and return

Do you currently have the most suitable method of holding and structuring your investments to achieve an efficient mix of risk and return that is specific to your particular objectives? And are you fully utilising the income, capital gains and inheritance tax advantages of these investments, particularly as the taxation regime governing them may be subject to change in the future? We have provided a selection of tax-efficient solutions you may wish to discuss with us.

Talk to us about our comprehensive planning service

Following any Budget, and certainly during this period of economic downturn, it’s crucial that all businesses consider their corporate financial planning requirements. Talk to us about our comprehensive planning service designed to meet the distinct and changing needs of you and your business.