How the social care reforms affect you

| Financial Planning | No Comments

The UK Government’s “Build Back Better” plan has specified that a £86,000 cap on personal care costs will be introduced in England from October 2023. These plans have divided both the media and politicians, as the Government states its goal to eradicate unlimited, unpredictable care costs – and the possibility of…

Why younger people need pensions

| Pensions | No Comments

For most young people, pensions are the last thing on their minds. Your 60s and 70s seem very far away and, typically, the most pressing financial priority (if there is one) is saving for a house deposit. It may also be that young people have retired parents who live very comfortably, with a house fully paid-off…

Financial advice on social media: be careful

| Savings & Investments | No Comments

20 years ago, most people got their news from TV, radio, newspapers and magazines. Today, the media landscape has shifted considerably. Whilst these media forms remain popular, more people are turning to social media for information – especially YouTube, Instagram and TikTok. These platforms have also…

COP 26: how can I invest to help the environment?

| Savings & Investments | No Comments

The climate summit in Glasgow (COP 26) has drawn a lot of attention, with some lauding the pledges coming from attending nations whilst others – such as Greta Thunberg – arguing that it has been a failure. Undeniably, however, the event has increased attention in “environmental” investing (or ESG)…

Can you prepare for a stock market crash?

| Savings & Investments | No Comments

Throughout your lifetime you are likely to witness many stock market crashes. Looking back at history, they have occurred an average of one or two times per decade. The latest was the 2020 COVID-19 crash. Prior to that, events included the 2018 “cryptocurrency crash”, the 2010 “flash crash”…

How to fill in a Self Assessment Tax Return efficiently

| Tax Planning | No Comments

UK tax returns can be intimidating. Not only do they require you to disclose various, complex aspects of your finances (which you may have lost track of), but there are also extra sections to fill out depending on your income and situation. It can be hard to work up the motivation to face it, but fortunately…

Overpaying a mortgage vs investing

| Savings & Investments | No Comments

The dream of living mortgage-free is a powerful one. Indeed, it is often the reason why people want to overpay on their monthly mortgage – so they can repay their loan faster. Yet is this the best way to grow your wealth and gain more financial independence? Would investing more money into shares, bonds…

Student finance: a guide for parents & students

| Financial Advice | No Comments

The cost of university today is far from straightforward. Student loans, tuition fees, maintenance grants – the list goes on. How can students enter higher education (HE) and be confident that the finances will be viable over the next 3+ years? How can you be sure that the debt…

Which ISA is the best?

| Savings & Investments | No Comments

Various types of ISA exist today and different providers offer various rates. Whilst it is great to have choice as a consumer, this can make it difficult to find an ISA which suits your needs. In this guide, our team at Elmfield Financial Planning in Padiham, Burnley offer a summary of the main ISA types available…

Should you rent in retirement?

| Pensions | No Comments

It is a wonderful feeling when you finally pay off your mortgage and own your home outright. At this point, accommodation is now “free” just as life slows down for retirement. Yet this luxury is becoming harder to achieve. Property prices have continued to rise despite the pandemic – up 11% over the past year…

7 deadly financial planning mistakes to avoid

| Financial Planning | No Comments

Even astute, wealthy people can make big mistakes with their money. Many of these can be attributed to a failure to plan effectively. In this guide, our team at Elmfield Financial Planning in Padiham, Burnley wanted to offer an overview of common financial planning mistakes we have seen…

A guide to self-invested personal pensions (SIPPs)

| Pensions | No Comments

Have you ever checked what your workplace pension is invested in? It may be that you are on a very good scheme. For many, however, the fees could be high and the range of choice limited. If you are looking to take more control of your retirement investments and their costs, then a SIPP (self-invested personal pension)…

Sequence risk: how to avoid damaging your retirement

| Savings & Investments | No Comments

Focusing on cash is not a good idea when building long-term savings. In 2021, interest rates are so low that even a 1.7% fixed-rate savings account with a High street bank fails to beat the 2% target rate of inflation set by the Bank of England (BoE). The stock market offers the chance of producing far better returns…

How do investment platforms work?

| Savings & Investments | No Comments

Where do you go if you want to invest in stocks, funds and other assets (e.g. commodities or even cryptocurrencies)? Similar to a food supermarket, in 2021 a range of investment platforms exist to offer these kinds of opportunities to people. However, they come in many forms and involve different…

Why tax planning matters

| Tax Planning | No Comments

Taxes have the potential to significantly erode your wealth and investment returns if you do not manage them effectively. We all have a duty to contribute to society, but nobody’s family or own finances should suffer from needless tax erosion. In this article, our financial planning team here at Elmfield…

Should I defer my state pension?

| Pensions | No Comments

The age from which you can start accessing your state pension depends largely on your age, but in 2021 this is set at 66 for both men and women (expected to rise to 67 between 2026 and 2028). However, you are not required to start claiming your state pension at the point when you qualify to receive it…

How to mitigate inheritance tax in 2021-22

| Tax Planning | No Comments

When you have spent decades saving, building wealth and paying taxes along the way, it is very natural to feel that you have a right to decide what happens to your wealth after you die. This is why inheritance tax is sometimes called the UK’s “most hated tax” – or the “death tax”…

Should I invest in cryptocurrency?

| Savings & Investments | No Comments

Many investors have been intrigued by cryptocurrencies since their emergence in 2009 (when Bitcoin was created). Since COVID-19 swept the world in 2020, however, they have become even more interesting as investors have sought strong returns outside of the stock markets…

The gender pension gap: what women need to know

| Pensions | No Comments

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to many undesirable outcomes. One that is less well publicised is the impact on UK women in retirement. According to the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII), the pandemic could lead many women to save less into pensions. This, in turn, may result in women…

The benefits of business financial planning

| Business Planning | No Comments

Financial planning has clear benefits for an individual. It helps you craft a strong retirement plan, establish financial protection for your family and maximises your take-home income through tax mitigation strategies. Yet there are also compelling reasons for business owners and directors to consider a…