Moments in life when we need clarity from financial advice or planning

The Nutmeg team


4 min read

There will always be moments in your financial journey where you’ll find yourself drifting into uncharted waters. Situations that lead us to question the usual approach to our finances.

Since we launched our personal financial advice service over a year ago, we’ve found people often gain comfort and value from an experienced professional to help them make more informed financial decisions.

It’s a bit like trying to shed some winter weight, right? You either eat a few less biscuits and drag yourself to the gym now and again, or you devise a healthy eating plan and have a personal trainer kickstart your success.

Think of a personal financial adviser or planning coach as someone to evaluate your financial fitness. Because we designed our financial advice service to do precisely that.

So, let’s focus on our top five real-life scenarios where financial advice or planning can really add value.

You’re in your early 40s, earning well. Your expenses are covered and you have surplus income to invest. You’re a higher rate or additional rate taxpayer and you’re conscious about investing tax efficiently.

Our own researchfound that Brits in the 35-44 age bracket are most likely to worry they’re not putting away enough for their retirement. In fact, 76% say their greatest financial fear is going short in their twilight years, precisely the time when you should be relaxing and enjoying life after work.

This age group, along with 45-54-year-olds, are suffering from something of a mid-life pension crisis. But there’s some simple steps that can help.

First, get visibility of the pensions you’ve accumulated so far. Then consider what kind of retirement you want to have. You might want to try Nutmeg’s financial planning tool to plot how your finances may change over time. These kinds of tools can give you an idea of what you might want to invest in.

Second, get familiar with what kind of tax relief is available to you and maximise your future position. Learn about tax relief, the trump card of pensions, in this downloadable guide.

You’ve started a family and want to build a nest egg from which you can make gifts to loved ones, or put towards their first-home or education.

There’s a shift taking place in how wealth is held generationally, with commentators talking of inheritance, in its traditional form, fading away in the next decade.

“Living inheritance”, where individuals hand down their wealth while they’re alive, is growing increasingly common – mostly but not exclusively to help children get onto the property ladder or to ease university tuition fees. This hand-me-down could by funded by releasing equity when downsizing, using the tax-free lump sum from a pension, or from investing surplus income when at a career high.

The Lifetime ISA (LISA) is available to anyone aged between 18 and 39. Contributions of up to £4,000 per tax year made by the account holder qualify for an additional 25% contribution from the taxman. Any gains and income within the ISA will grow tax free and can be a great way of building a nest egg for your children or grandchildren while you’re still living.

LISAs are less accessible than a traditional ISA, which means they offer some built-in protection from reckless spending.

Our planning service can help you quantify your financial goals for gift giving and build a plan for how to do this effectively. If you plan on funding their education, we can establish the expected costs now and factor in inflation’s effect to create a plan.

Your retirement is closing in, and now you want to understand your options.

Pension freedoms have opened up many more options when deciding how you will take your money from your pension. But more options sometimes equal more confusion.

Personalised financial advice can give you a clearer picture of your pension position, the schemes you have, plus your state pension entitlements. It will also identify what more can be done now to make for a brighter twilight, and help you gauge whether you’re on track for the retirement you want.

Talk to the team to see how we can help you.

You’ve received an inheritance or lump sum, maybe a bonus, and you’re not sure where to start.

Your approach will depend on the size of the sum and your personal circumstances. Our advice for inheritance and other large sums is to start from the bottom up. Begin with paying down debts, setting aside emergency savings and then consider what feels comfortable to save or invest for your financial future.

On the investment question, everyone has a different tolerance for risk. For those who don’t want to take any risks whatsoever– even if they could potentially earn higher returns over the long term – investing isn’t right. Others will be more comfortable making this trade-off.

At Nutmeg we have a range of diversified portfolios to match your preferred risk level, with investors who are more cautious to adventurous. You can also edit your chosen risk level to adapt to life’s changing circumstances.

As well as providing regulated financial advice, we also offer a low-cost planning service too that could help in your decision making.

You’re the boss and run your own business. When will the time come to turn your attention to making time to boss your personal financial future?

The number of self-employed people in the UK is nearing five million and rising , yet too few are paying into their pension. According to our research1, the average self-employed person invests just £77.46 a month into a pension scheme– which is less than half of the average contribution.

Research by Citizen’s Advice gives some clues to the reasons why people are not investing. Seven in ten business owners don’t understand the tax breaks pensions provide or appreciate the flexibility they allow.

Earnings through salary and dividends for business owners can fluctuate greatly. The option to pay less or stop paying altogether, not to mention the option of paying more when times are good, is vital. The Nutmeg pension is quick and easy to set up. It’s also flexible enough that you can drip feed as much or as little, as frequently or as infrequently as you prefer.

Sources

[1] The survey was conducted by Populus on an online sample of 2,076 GB/UK adults between 2-4 July 2019. Data is weighted to be representative of the population of Great Britain. Targets for quotas and weights are taken from the National Readership Survey, a random probability F2F survey conducted annually with 34,000 adults. Populus is a founder member of the British Polling Council and abides by it rules. For further information see: http://www.britishpollingcouncil.org

Risk warning

As with all investing, your capital is at risk. The value of your portfolio with Nutmeg can go down as well as up and you may get back less than you invest. Tax treatment depends on your individual circumstances and may be subject to change in the future. Lifetime ISA rules apply.

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The Nutmeg team

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