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Autumn 2018 Budget – Overview

Introduction A Budget for “Strivers, Grafters and Carers” Budgets, as we all know, take place on Wednesdays. After the excitement of Prime Minister’s Questions, the Deputy Speaker calls ‘the Chancellor of the Exchequer’ and he – so far we have not had a female Chancellor – bounds to his feet, delivering an upbeat message about the nation’s finances and pouring scorn on Her Majesty’s Opposition in equal measure. Most people had been expecting this year’s Budget to be in November. The Budget has been brought…
31st October 2018

3 financial fears this Halloween and how to overcome them

It’s time to be prepared for scary movies on TV, ghosts and ghouls trick-or-treating at your door and listening extra carefully for things that go bump in the night. But whilst these fears might be unfounded, it might be a good time to think about what frightens you in your finances and, more importantly, how to overcome those concerns. Keep reading for our top financial fears and what you can do to banish them this October. Losing big on your investments – It’s all too easy…
31st October 2018

3 top tips to prepare your kids for independent travel

It’s one thing to travel with your children or grandchildren and help them realise an appreciation for seeing the world. To prepare them to navigate that world on their own and to take control of their own adventures, is another thing entirely, but it’s not impossible. Let them take the reins when you plan your next trip – With your years of experience and being a parent or guardian, it’s easy to assume that you’re better off taking care of all the planning yourself. You…
31st October 2018

Life expectancy: Seven ways to prepare for a longer life

Good news: People in the UK are living for longer. But along with benefiting longer life expectancy, it means we’ve got to plan for more years financially. As more people reach milestone birthdays that just a few generations ago only a lucky handful celebrated, it does raise questions on how everyone is going to be supported in terms of money. Whether you’re approaching retirement age now or are in your 30s and have barely considered saving in a pension, thinking about how many years you’re…
18th September 2018

6 ways to reduce inheritance tax for your loved ones

Have you thought about how much your loved ones will need to pay in inheritance tax (IHT) when you pass on your wealth? Official statistics show the national IHT bill is climbing but there are steps you can take to reduce this as much as possible. Figures from HMRC show that the total amount of IHT paid during 2017/18 reached a record high of £5.2 billion. In just a year, the IHT bill has increased by 8% (£388 million)…
18th September 2018

Protecting yourself from pension scammers

Once again, pension scams are making headlines. Research from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and The Pensions Regulator (TPR) discovered that the average victim of a pension scam loses £91,000; a devastating sum to lose when you’re planning your retirement years. The figures are likely to be just the tip of the iceberg too. In 2017, 253 victims reported a pension scam to Action Fraud, totalling £23 million. However, it’s thought that many crimes of this kind either go unreported or unnoticed…
18th September 2018

Planning for retirement: Five tips if you think you’ve left it too late

Research from Dunstan Thomas last year, showed that just 17% of 54-71-year olds know how much money they will have when they stop working. You may have read, heard or seen advice telling you to start your retirement planning as early as possible, alongside information which assumes that you have 40+ working years left to build a pension fund. But what if that’s not possible? How can you make the most of your pension, if you have found yourself within 15 years of leaving…
24th August 2018

Graduation season: Helping your child decide between saving for the future and paying off debt

Are you one of the thousands of parents celebrating your child’s graduation this summer? If so, congratulations to you and yours and we wish them the best for the future. Part of that future will hopefully involve starting their first graduate job, which will bring many decisions and will probably mean that they are automatically enrolled in a Workplace Pension. For some graduates, one of those decisions will include choosing between remaining enrolled and making contributions each month or withdrawing from the scheme to put…
24th August 2018

Thinking about withdrawing your pension fund at once? Think again.

According to research by Prudential, a tenth of those who are planning to retire in 2018 will withdraw all their pension fund at once. Many of these will face tax bills which could be avoided, as they plan to withdraw more than the 25% tax-free lump sum. The issue Naturally, your pension fund is yours to do with as you please. But if you are interested in providing a sustainable retirement income which will support your desired lifestyle when you finish working life, then…
24th August 2018

Interest rates rise above 0.5% for the first time in a decade

The Bank of England (BoE) has increased interest rates above 0.5% for the first time since 2009. Today, the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) voted unanimously to push up the base rate by 0.25% to 0.75%. That’s not a massive increase; savers aren’t going to suddenly start seeing real returns on most of their bank or building society accounts and it won’t cause significant pain to most mortgage holders. However, coupled with the 0.25% increase in November last year, it is another warning shot that interest…
3rd August 2018

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