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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

Managing risk vs reward when pension planning

Avoiding taking a risk could be holding you back from many things; such as ticking skydiving off your bucket list or joining the local amateur dramatics club. It could also mean that you are taking money away from yourself in retirement. By being overly cautious with your pension investments now, you could be robbing your future self of income which would make your retirement much more comfortable. How do over-50s feel about investment risk? According to research from the London Institute of…
18th July 2018

Disconnected: How moving services online could lose pensioners money

The internet is often a point of contention among families. But, whether you think it has brought the world closer together, or driven us apart, one thing is true; it has infiltrated most parts of life and there are some things that are becoming difficult to do without using it. Unfortunately, one of those processes is accessing important benefits which many older people rely on to support themselves financially. Now, we assume that, as you are reading this online, you might be quite comfortable ‘surfing…
18th July 2018

Failure to prepare: Many over-50s are not prepared for life after retirement

A lack of preparation could mean that today’s over-50s are heading for disaster when they reach retirement. In fact, research from the London Institute of Banking & Finance shows that half of people approaching retirement do not feel well prepared for it. To illustrate: 35% worry about how they will manage financially in retirement 38% say they will have to work longer than they had planned 47% need to save more for retirement There are several factors causing a misalignment in retirement…
18th July 2018

Living inheritances gain prominence as reason for Equity Release

A report from Key Retirement has shown that approximately 30 retired homeowners give money released from their home to relatives each day and these ‘financial gifts’ are shown to be the fastest-growing reason behind Equity Release. Over the past year, the number of people giving Equity Release money away to relatives has grown by 4%. The reasons for giving financial gifts The average age for accessing equity has fallen from 72 to 71, with many looking to help their children or grandchildren…
28th June 2018

Five reasons not to let Pension Freedoms go to your head

Throughout the 2017/18 financial year, flexible pension withdrawals totalled more than £6.5 billion, the highest it has been since the introduction of Pension Freedoms in 2015 (Source: HMRC). In the first three months of 2018 alone, just under £1.7 billion was taken from pension funds by 222,000 people; an average of £7,644 per person. Of course, some of those people will be making withdrawals as part of a sensible and sustainable plan. Others, however, may be letting the new-found Pension Freedoms go…
28th June 2018

Key information for interest-only mortgage holders

According to UK Finance, the number of outstanding interest-only mortgages has fallen by 46% since 2012. Unfortunately, the issue of interest-only mortgage holders, with no way to make their final repayments, is still a reality for some. If you have an interest-only mortgage, you may be wondering what all the fuss is about and whether you should be concerned about your own arrangements. It is likely that you will have many questions, so we have endeavoured to cover all the main points:…
28th June 2018

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