Investment and wealth management, from an individual's perspective, is simply the science of solving or enhancing his or her financial situation. From our perspective, wealth management is the ability to deliver a full range of financial services and products in an unbiased, consultative manner.
Shorestone can provide almost every financial product available and if we don't, we know who to recommend who can. We are truly client focused. We look after our clients without any presupposition about what financial products or services are appropriate for that individual.
Our overriding objective is to understand our clients and find out what's important and why. Only then can we bring in the appropriate financial products.
Shorestone can help grow clients’ assets through regular savings; this may be for a specific goal such as school fees, university fees, saving for a new home, a second or retirement home or simply building long-term investments for the future.
The following are typical investment products that you may be familiar with and on which we can provide expert advice:
• Savings accounts
• National Savings
• Individual Savings Accounts (ISAs)
• Retirement plans
• Collective Investment Schemes (OEICs and unit trusts)
• Investment trusts
• Onshore and offshore investment bonds
In summary wealth management is the process of meeting the needs and wants of our clients by providing the appropriate financial products and on-going services.
Retirement Planning is the process of determining retirement income goals and the actions and decisions necessary to achieve those goals. Retirement planning includes identifying sources of income, estimating expenses, implementing a savings pattern and managing assets.
In a sense, retirement planning is the planning one does to be prepared for life after work ends, not just financially but in all aspects of life. This may include how to spend time in retirement, where to live and when to quit work, whether part-time or fully, and our holistic approach considers all these areas where required.
Early in a person's working life, retirement planning is about setting aside enough money for retirement. During the middle of an individual's career, it might also include setting specific income or asset targets and taking the steps to achieve them. In the few years leading up to retirement, financial assets are more or less determined, and so the emphasis changes to non-financial, lifestyle aspects.
The following are typical pension products that you may be familiar with and we can provide expert advice on each:
• Stakeholder pensions
• Personal pensions
• Self invested personal pensions (SIPPs)
• Retirement Annuity Contracts (s.226)
• Executive personal pensions (EPPs)
• Company pension schemes
• Post retirement planning such as income drawdown, flexible drawdown and partial drawdown
Inheritance Tax is said to be the only voluntary tax in the UK tax system and with our expertise in inheritance tax mitigation it is possible to reduce or possibly remove liability altogether. However, do nothing and, beyond certain exemptions, forty pence in every pound of your inheritance or estate could make its way to the governments hands.
Will you be triggering inheritance tax?
• If an individual’s estate on death plus any gifts in the previous 7 years are worth more than £325,000 (includes everything) there will be an inheritance tax charge. The £325,000 band is for an individual so couples have a nil rate band of £650,000.
• From 6th April 2017, an additional nil rate band will be slowly introduced, initially giving an additional £100,00 to set against the value of the family home if this is left to the direct descendant.
• If an individual has received any gifts, such as a deposit for a home or a helping hand with a bill and the donor dies within 7 years of the gift (gifts are usually only captured if over a value of £3,000 but this threshold is for the total gifts gifted by the donor so a gift of £2,000 could become chargeable if the donor also gifted £2,000 to someone else in the same tax year).
We can review your estate or the estate of your family members, establish the potential exposure to Inheritance tax and propose both long term and short term strategies to mitigate your tax liability.
The following are typical inheritance tax planning products that you may be familiar with and we can provide expert advice on each:
• Individual Savings Account (ISAs)
• AIM portfolios, including Business Property Relief (BPR)
• Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS)
• Discounted Gift Trusts
• Gift and Loan Trusts
Existing investment & pension plan reviews are also available to all our clients. Whether you already have a financial adviser or not, whether you are happy with your investments or not, we can provide an unbiased and independent view on whether we believe that your objectives are being met.
More often than not, our clients have come to us unsure about their investments or are dissatisfied with their current adviser. This may be through a lack of a personal service, or maybe their adviser has moved on or retired.
Sometimes that smallest adjustments can make the biggest differences in your investment returns.
We will analyse your existing investment portfolio and make recommendations (if required) on how the investments can work better for you based upon your lifestyle goals and needs.
The most important considerations when constructing an investment portfolio are listed below:
• Are your investments being held in the correct tax wrappers?
• Are there any tax wrappers or allowances you are not using but should consider or utilise?
• Are your investments held by the right individual – i.e. should my spouse hold them for tax savings?
• Is my investment portfolio tailored to the level of risk that I am willing to take?
• Is my portfolio being regularly rebalanced to ensure that the agreed level or risk does not exceed the amount I am willing to take?
• Have I diversified my investment portfolio across a number of different investments? (this does not mean spreading the investments over different product providers, which is the misconception by most private investors, but spreading the investments over different asset classes, sectors and geographical areas)
• Have I considered sheltering my investments from inheritance tax?
• Are my investments being regularly reviewed and changed to keep pace with any changes in legislation, the economy or the performance in the underlying investments?
The last bullet point is arguably the most important aspect of investment planning. A good investment strategy can quickly fall apart if it is not regularly reviewed to keep it on track.
Our review service will help you understand the answers to some of the above questions. If you would like to discuss this further with our team please get in touch.
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Tax planning is a crucial role within wealth management and we try to ensure that any advice provided is tailored to our client's personal tax planning, now and in the future.
Tax is a good thing – our money keeps the country running. But paying too much tax is not a good thing. Every year, UK taxpayers give away several billion pounds more than they need to. In 2015 the figure is expected to be around £4.9 billion.
The government creates many legitimate opportunities for you to reduce the amount you pay in tax. However, you may not be aware of them all, or you may be unsure of how to take advantage of them – or like many people, you may have known but simply not done anything.
Tax is a complex area, and becomes more so if you run a business or have several sources of income. Numerous factors will affect the amount of tax you should pay each year, including your job, savings and personal circumstances. But for many of us, fear of paying too little tax (and the possibly consequences) means we often end up paying too much.
The most common areas where we tend to waste tax are:
• Savings (e.g. by not using or under-using cash ISAs)
• Retirement planning (e.g. by failing to make sufficient payments into pensions)
• Inheritance tax (e.g. by not planning ahead)
• Capital gains tax (e.g. by not holding stocks and shares in an ISA)
• Not seeking professional help from an accountant and a financial adviser
Logical analysis of a financial situation or plan from a tax perspective, is to align financial goals with tax efficiency planning. The purpose of tax planning is to discover how to accomplish all of the elements of a financial plan in the most tax-efficient manner possible. Tax planning thus allows all of the elements of a financial plan to interact more effectively by minimizing tax liability.
However, while tax planning is an important element in any financial plan, it is important to not let the "tax" tail wag the financial "dog". This can ultimately be counterproductive, as virtually all courses of financial action will have some tax consequences, and they should not be avoided solely on this basis.
Equity release is a way of releasing the wealth tied up in your property without having to sell it and move to another home. You can either borrow against the value of your home or sell all or part of it in exchange for a lump sum or a regular monthly income.
There are a range of products that let you access the equity (cash) tied up in your home if you are over the age of 55 and Shorestone can guide you through an appropriate strategy.
There are two main equity release options:
• Lifetime mortgage: you take out a mortgage secured on your property. Unlike an ordinary mortgage, you don’t normally make any repayments while you’re alive. Interest is added to the loan and the loan amount and interest are paid back when you die or when you move house.
• Home reversion: you sell part or all of your home to a home reversion provider in return for a lump sum or regular payments. You have the right to continue living in the property until you die, but you have to agree to maintain and insure it.
If you are thinking about an equity release product, you should take financial advice from a specialist. All advisers recommending equity release schemes have to have specific qualifications and we at Shorestone meet this important criteria.
Family Protection planning often appears as the least important part of a client's agenda.
Having the correct protection strategy in place will enable you to protect your family’s lifestyle if your income suddenly changes due to premature death or illness. But choosing the right options can be difficult without obtaining professional advice to ensure you protect your family from financial hardship.
Shorestone will ensure that you find the right solutions to protect your assets and offer your family and business lasting benefits. Our professional advice is essential to making an informed decision about the most suitable sum assured, premium, terms and payment provisions.
We work with our clients to create tailored protection strategies that meet their financial goals and needs and we’re committed to ensuring that our clients enjoy the best financial planning service available.
As part of our service we also take the time to understand our client’s unique needs and circumstances, so that we can provide them with the most suitable protection solutions in the most cost effective way.
The following are protection products that you may be familiar with and we can provide expert advice on each:
• Life Assurance
• Income Protection and Permanent Health Insurance
• Mortgage Payment Protection
• Private Medical Insurance
• Critical Illness
• Key Man Insurance
Shorestone Financial is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Shorestone Financial is a Limited Liability Partnership registered in England No: OC 341462
Shorestone Financial is committed to treating its customers fairly. This is achieved by providing an innovative and cost effective approach to personal financial advice.
Our business is based on trust and building long term value to our clients. Our staff are client centred, advice focused and not product driven.