Get to know us
Is our role just to arrange and manage financial products for you?
That may be important as part of the Financial Plan. However, we are seeking answers to the same questions as you. We therefore have a clear picture how financial planning can offer real value to you.
We deliberately prefer to work with a smaller number of clients. We want to be sure we have the time to make a bigger difference to their lives. If we do not think that we can add real value to you, we will be honest enough to say so.
For some clients, our value lies in helping to bring ideas into reality. Retiring earlier than expected is a common objective. For others, it is the peace of mind in knowing that their finances are being competently managed. They are confident that they have a sympathetic sounding board, particularly at turning points in their lives.
We have worked with the majority of our clients for a long time, decades in many cases, and our relationship has developed into one of friendship. This would not be possible if we were trying to look after hundreds of clients. Frankly, it would not be as enjoyable coming to work every day.
Financial planning is not all about numbers and is certainly not all about mundane things such as pension products. We want the contact between us to be enjoyable (even when investment markets are ‘misbehaving’), engaging, inspirational and motivational.
We want to share your joy when your dreams come to fruition.
We therefore need to get to know you. That goes beyond the filing cabinet of past financial products that you may have purchased. It is about your values, your dreams and your hopes for the future.
Our Investment Philosophy
It is important to remember that when investing there are rarely right or wrong answers. Decisions are generally made based on past data or future assumptions. Neither of those are reliable indications of what will actually happen over a long period of time.
However, rational decisions can be made based on consistent results from academic research, sound investment theory and basic common sense. Ultimately, the overriding principle of your investment portfolio is to give you the best chance of meeting your goals. If you need not take significant investment risk, we will point this out to you.
If your investments have to work that much harder, you can be assured that our investment approach will help. We have an ability to see through the market ‘noise’, and will give you the best opportunity to achieve your goals, with comfort and peace of mind.
Please refer to Our Investment Philosophy for more details.
Client case studies
The following case studies are actual ways in which we were able to provide real value to two of our clients in managing their finances.
Making a real difference, plus a huge tax saving
Mr and Mrs R had run a successful business and through some shrewd and thoughtful planning, had accumulated a substantial portfolio, comprising pensions, ISAs, Investment Bonds, shares and a number of ‘’buy to let’ properties.
Although there was no ‘financial plan’ as such, common sense suggested that they could look forward to a secure future. However, the portfolio was becoming a little unwieldly and changes in legislation and difficulties with one or two of the investment companies had resulted in some changes being necessary.
Although interested in being involved with managing the portfolio, Mr R in particular, was also becoming rather burdened by it.
We were able to recommend some rationalisation of the portfolio, switching out of expensive and poor performing products and, through a Wrap Account, put in place a more coherent and easy to manage portfolio.
Through our financial forecasting software, we were able to offer Mr and Mrs R the assurance that the common sense view of their financial situation being very robust was, indeed, accurate. We were able to demonstrate to them that they should have no fears over inevitable declines in the value of their investments that occur from time to time due to market ‘wobbles’.
In fact, we were able to go a step further than this and demonstrate that they could afford to gift one of their ‘buy to let’ properties to their daughter now, rather than waiting until they both passed away.
As you can imagine, this has made an immediate difference to their daughter and her family (including Mr and Mrs R’s grandchildren) as they now have an additional source of income which has enabled them to build an extension and have more space for their growing family.
Furthermore, come 2021 and seven years from the date the gift was made, they will have reduced their potential Inheritance Tax liability and saved tax of £120,000.
The ‘buy to let’ property has increased in value since it was gifted by Mr and Mrs R and the growth is excluded from their estate as well.
Our recommendations have made a real difference to Mr and Mrs R’s daughter and family, and given real pleasure to Mr and Mrs R during their lifetimes without compromising their own financial security in any way.
A better way to spend two years of one’s life
Mr M is a longstanding client of ours, like so many of our clients; friends in fact, going back over 30 years.
He always had it in his mind to retire around the age of 63 but, by the age of 60, his work was becoming less enjoyable due to, the often experienced, combination of poor management and excessive workload.
Through our financial forecasting software, we were able to demonstrate to Mr M, and particularly his lovely wife who needed some convincing (!), that Mr M could take early retirement and they could afford for him to do so.
We had a number of meetings over the course of a year or so and eventually Mr M gave notice that he was going to retire. In April 2016, it became a reality, two years earlier than he had always planned.
He couldn’t resist returning to his previous employer for 6 months to carry out some consultancy work, but he is now fully retired!
He now has the time to complete the ‘house project’, which seems to have been ongoing for more than 25 years (!), clear out the storage unit (and save the monthly fee) and be involved in the maintenance of a plane in which he has a share of 1/16th!