We often receive enquiries at Blue Sky which are summarised by new clients as “we just need a little bit of guidance on a couple of matters but otherwise we are pretty much on top of things financially”.
Generally, this relates to queries around how to take pension benefits, and perhaps the best course of action with inheritance.
A couple of little tweaks here and there and it’s job done… or is it?
Occasionally, as the Blue Sky adviser begins to get the full picture and ask the right questions, it becomes very clear that they are not on top of things at all – rather skirting the edges of what’s really possible. There is little clarity on questions such as:
- What about the possibility of changing pension rules?
- Why are you paying so much tax?
- How can you manage your tax situation better?
- Is your partner engaged in all financial matters?
- What are the outcomes if something happens to you?
- What if there is a stock-market downturn… how does that impact your income?
- How does your post-retirement investment strategy differ from that of the one you have in play whilst working?
- How can you help your children, grandchildren and loved-ones?
- How can you best pass money in the right way and at the right time?
It is often said that we Brits don’t plan much beyond our next holiday and, unfortunately, on many occasions this is the reality.
I’m encouraged though. Having delivered a couple of talks recently, professionals in the audience have been motivated to engage us and admit that their own finances are a bit of a dog’s dinner! It’s so often the case that hard working professionals have an eclectic mix of income, investment, policies, insurances etc – with very little structure for building wealth and financial security over the long term.
Ordinarily, you would expect these professional, educated, senior people to have all this nailed. Yet, they admit that they have been so busy working and looking after everyone else that they haven’t generally had the time, nor the inclination, to co-ordinate their own plan. They have been good at looking after their family’s immediate needs but any thoughts around planning is on tomorrow’s ‘to do list’.
I’m sure as you read this, there will be a certain resonance to your own situation or that of people you know?
If you or your family want to be more proactive and be better than ‘pretty much on top of things’, then Blue Sky are here to help. Strip down your goals. Be clear on what you want and how you would like to live your life. Then let’s see what’s possible and create a strategy to make it happen.