Pensions & Investments

We work closely with our sister company Unity Financial Consultants to offer access to pension and investment advice. Unity Financial Consultants LLP is run by Matt Deazeley and his team who have over 30 years financial and investment management experience.

Pensions and Investments

As well as the relationship you have with us, you will also have Matt as your personal financial adviser and be able to access a dedicated team of experienced individuals working behind the scenes who take care of all the administration, research and reporting.

Matt will check the progress and appropriateness of your plans regularly and discuss with you any changes either of you feel are relevant. This way, not only will you find out how your plans are performing each year, we can also ensure we adapt to changes in your circumstances and to legislation or taxation.

Retirement Planning

The introduction of pension freedoms in 2015 means that there are more options than ever when it comes to planning for your retirement.

Retiring is no longer a standard, singular event. As you get older, you may want to reduce your working hours, access capital to repay mortgages and other debt, make the most of your health and take those holidays you’ve been thinking about or support your children and grandchildren with their key life events.

As we are continuing to live longer, you will need your retirement fund to last significantly longer than your parents did and as part of this planning you will also need to take your long-term care provisions into consideration.

Regardless of when you intend to retire, if you do not start planning for it now, there is a real danger that you could outlive your savings.

It doesn’t matter how old you are, or at what stage of retirement preparation you are at, if you take control of your financial planning now you can be confident that you’ll be able to afford the retirement lifestyle that you have in mind.

Retirement Options

Annuities work by taking your pension savings and paying out a guaranteed income for life, or over a fixed term. They are still right for some people, but committing to an annuity can mean less flexibility with your pension money. With drawdown, money left in your pension pot when you die can be passed to your family.

Annuities

When you come to retire, 25% of your total pension fund can usually be taken as a tax-free lump sum; the remainder can be used to buy an annuity.

An annuity is a type of insurance contract. Once purchased, the insurance company is responsible for providing you with a guaranteed income – any time from age 55 – which is payable for the rest of your life, unless it is a fixed term annuity.

There are several types of annuity and you are typically not obliged to purchase your annuity through your pension scheme provider.

Once it’s set up, an annuity is final and cannot be amended, so it’s vital that you think about your options carefully. You will need to consider both your immediate and long-term income needs as well as those of any spouse or partner.

Matt can help you find the most appropriate product for you.

Drawdown

Flexi-access drawdown is the means by which – at age 55 or over – you can choose to draw your income directly from pension savings.

This approach offers you greater flexibility and choice over how you utilise your retirement fund. You can choose to take regular monthly or annual payments or take a series of lump-sum payments as and when you need them. This flexibility allows you to draw your income in line with your needs throughout retirement.

You can still access up to 25% as a tax-free lump sum. This can either be drawn in one go, or in phases. Once you exceed the tax-free cash allowance you will be taxed on any withdrawals at your highest marginal rate.

It is important to remember that if you choose the drawdown option, your money stays invested and it has the potential to go up or down. You need to ensure that your fund will provide an income for the rest of your lifetime, so independent financial advice around how to structure your investments in line with your personal circumstances and your attitude to risk, is paramount.

Investments

Creating and maintaining the right investment strategy is vital to achieving your financial goals.When it comes to planning for you and your family's financial future, how you choose to invest will depend entirely on your personal circumstances and what you want to achieve.

For example, if you’re investing for your retirement you will need to employ a different strategy than if you’re aiming for a shorter term goal. With so many investment options available there are a multitude of products that could help you to achieve your medium and long-term objectives.

Matt will work with you to create an investment plan that balances your key objectives with your attitude to risk, accounting for your current and potential tax position. We will also develop the best investment management plan for you, to help ensure that your money is working as hard as possible to help you achieve your goals.

Our experienced investment advisers are completely independent and can help you access the whole investment market, advising on the most appropriate choice for you and your family.

Disclaimer

All pension and investment advice is provided by United Financial Consultants LLP who are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority reference 809231. Please note that the Financial Conduct Authority do not regulate some forms of tax advice. The value of an investment or income from it can go up as well as down.

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