Helping you navigate the world of personal finance one article at a time

Welcome to our Financial Planning Blog.

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Below are our lastest blog posts

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Lifetime ISA

The Government has launched a new type of ISA called the Lifetime ISA (LISA). This article explains how the Lifetime ISA works, who can use it, and how it is different to the main ISA. The Lifetime ISA is particularly attractive if you are aged under 40...

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Plans to sell annuities abandoned

The plan to allow consumers to sell annuities for a cash lump sum has been abandoned by the UK Government. Key points: You will now not be able to sell your pension annuity from April 2017 Anyone who bought an annuity before the pension freedoms will not be able to...

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Investments since Brexit

It is nearly 3 months since the EU referendum result. We have seen some unusual circumstances and results for investments since Brexit. This article examines some of the key changes and implications for your investments since Brexit. We also share the results of our...

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Financial implications of Brexit

The financial implications of Brexit could be considerable, so we have set out below the main short-term issues. In particular, we examine how Brexit could have an impact on your financial planning and investment management. Key points: There are risks to the economy...

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Risk vs reward with investments

Have you ever wondered what is the point of taking risks with investments? In this article, we examine the benefits and risks of investing: the trade off that is risk vs reward with investments. We show you the benefits of taking extra risk using data and examples,...

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Borrowing to invest

This article has been inspired by a recent newspaper article, which ignored the additional risks of borrowing to invest in property. Property investment is great for many people, but newspaper articles often simplify the investment issues surrounding property. The end...

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EU referendum resources

The UK votes in a pivotal referendum on June 23rd. What will happen to the economy if the UK votes to leave in the referendum? We have found that it can be difficult to get reliable information on the issues relevant to your decision. Therefore, we have summarised...

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New State Pension from 2016

This article explains how the new State Pension works from 6th April 2016. The changes do not affect you if you are already claiming the State Pension. This change is important to you if you are approaching State Pension age, and particularly so if you are a woman,...

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Capital gains tax on investments

A reduction in capital gains tax on investments has been announced, and will apply from 6th April 2016. The capital gains tax on investments will reduce to 10% or 20%, from the previous rates of 18% or 28%. No change has been made to the capital gains tax rate on...

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The personal savings allowance

From April 2016 a new Personal Savings Allowance will mean that most people can avoid tax on their savings interest. Most people can save up to £200 tax as a result of the changes. If you earn less than £16,000 including savings interest you could pay no interest on a...

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Buy to let stamp duty increase

From April 2016 buy to let investors will be subject to another tax increase. New purchases of rental properties or second homes after this date will incur an additional 3% stamp duty on top of the existing stamp duty rate. Key points Buy to let investors and second...

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Should you top up your State pension?

The State pension is changing from April 2016. As a result of this change you will be offered the chance to top up your State pension if you already receive the State pension under the current rules, or will become entitled to get the State pension before April 2016,...

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Buy to let tax relief changes

From April 2017 the way you claim tax relief against a buy to let mortgage will change.If you pay income tax at 40% or 45%, and have a mortgage on your property, from 2017 your buy to let profits could be severely reduced, or even wiped out. These changes will not...

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How to sell your retirement annuity

The March 2015 Budget introduced an interesting consultation designed to allow you to sell your pension annuity and convert this to a lump sum. These proposals have now been abandoned, so it will now not be possible to sell your retirement annuity. These changes will...

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Auto enrolment guide

Are you an employer looking for help and guidance dealing with your auto enrolment responsibilities? We have produced a low-cost solution to auto enrolment - a low-cost auto enrolment guide. Starting your auto enrolment project We have had many discussions with other...

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Pensions and divorce

If you are considering divorce you should think carefully about your pension plans. The decisions you take now could have a significant impact on your future income in retirement. As part of divorce proceedings you have the right to ask the court how to divide the...

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Changes to intestacy rules

If you have overlooked making a will this article applies to you, especially if you are not married or have step-children. You will be amazed at the inconsistencies in the law if you die suddenly without making a will. You could open some disastrous family issues if...

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4 flexible retirement income options

The new flexible pensions will be introduced in April 2015. What are your flexible pension income options? We explore the 4 new flexible pension income options you can exploit from April 2015. This will help you to start planning methods to release your valuable...

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New ISA rules

The tax-free NISA allowance is now £20,000 per person, per tax year (from April 2017). This article explains how the new ISA rules work, how they differ to the old ISAs, and why you should maximise your ISAs now rather than waiting until the end of the tax year (the...

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5 auto enrolment options

As an employer you should be aware of auto enrolment and what it means for your business. With your auto enrolment staging date approaching fast you are probably looking around at how to comply with the legislation. What are your auto enrolment options? This article...

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Would you like to retire at 70?

How attractive is the idea of retirement at age 70? Probably not very! A recent speech by an influential adviser to the Government, has raised the realistic possibility that the State pension should be only available from age 70. This could happen sooner than you...

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