Month: December 2023

How financial advice can improve your mental health…

Financial difficulties are one of the biggest causes of poor mental health in the UK.

In fact, figures from the Money and Mental Health Policy Institute show that nearly three-quarters of Brits have felt anxious in the last two weeks, with many citing money issues as the cause of their anxiety.

But a problem shared is a problem halved, so if you’re struggling under the weight of financial burdens, it’s well worth seeking professional advice.

An expert financial planner can do much more than advise you on balancing budgets and investing wisely.

They can also give you a much-needed sense of security and reassurance, so you can live your life on your terms and take control of your future.

How can a financial planner help you
Making the complex simple

Countless elements of financial planning, from setting household budgets to building savings strategies and repaying debts, can be hugely overwhelming.

After all, the terminology and technicalities can be hard to get your head around, and of course, the cost of getting it wrong puts you under added pressure.

But a financial planner will have the expertise and knowledge that you may lack, and be able to advise you from a much more informed perspective.

That can massively relieve the burden you’re experiencing, both now and in the longer term.

Giving you confidence

If you have both a better understanding of your financial situation and an expert helping you put together a plan for the future, you’ll gain a new sense of confidence over your affairs.

As a result, you can feel in control of your own destiny and empowered to make decisions.

Certainty for the future

Financial anxiety often stems from not knowing whether we’ll be able to make ends meet in later life.

Working with a financial planner helps you address this problem, as they can help you build a strategy that prepares you for retirement, makes sure you’re ready for emergencies, and puts you on course to achieve your long-term goals.

An objective viewpoint

Emotions can run high when you’re making financial decisions, particularly if your dreams and ambitions are at stake.

This can often mean you’re not in the best place mentally to make big financial decisions, and you could be swayed by your feelings into making unwise choices.

However, a financial planner doesn’t have the same emotional investment and can look at your situation in an impartial, objective way.

Knowing you have that sense of clarity available can offer valuable reassurance at a time when you’re making decisions that define your future.

If you have any questions about getting your finances in order, please get in touch with our friendly team of specialists.

You’ll find that having access to the professional advice you want and need will make a big difference to every aspect of your life.

Get your business ready for the unexpected…

Any business owner will know that they can face sudden and unexpected challenges, and be forced to grapple with factors that are well beyond their control.

Perhaps your premises are damaged in a fire or through crime, or maybe there’s a wider slump in the economy or your industry that hits trading.

As a business owner, it’s your responsibility to be ready for the unexpected, so you can withstand any disruption and come back in a strong position.

You can do that by creating a financial emergency plan. Here’s how…

Look at your current financial situation
You can start building your financial emergency plan by gathering relevant documents such as balance sheets, cash flow reports and income statements.

You should also take a look at any outstanding invoices you may have, your existing debt obligations and any other areas where you could be financially vulnerable.

Identify potential risks
Think about what factors could possibly derail the smooth running of your business, both internal and external.

Internal risks could include losing key clients and cash flow problems, for example, while external risks may include economic downturns and natural disasters.

Once you’ve identified these potential issues, you can draw up strategies to mitigate each one.

Create an emergency fund
It’s well worth having a separate pot of money that can serve as a safety net during difficult times, so you can continue meeting necessary expenses from energy bills to staff salaries.

This should be easy to access whenever it’s needed, and ideally be enough to cover around three to six months’ worth of operating expenses.

Make sure you’re properly insured
Insurance is a lifeline in the event of a disaster, so make sure key areas of your business are properly covered and that each policy is suitable for your needs.

Your insurance should be regularly reviewed, as you can never know when you need to turn to your insurance provider, and you don’t want to find yourself without adequate protection when you need it most.

Draw up a crisis communication plan
Communication is key during a crisis, so it’s really important that key stakeholders across the business know exactly how to stay in touch with each other in tough times.

This includes everyone from members of your team to third parties such as customers and suppliers, so you can manage expectations and maintain important relationships at the same time.

Don’t put all your eggs in one basket
Many businesses make the mistake of relying on just one revenue source, so it’s well worth diversifying revenue streams where possible.

For example, you could actively seek to widen your target audience or roll out new products or services.

This could ensure your business is far less exposed to factors beyond your control, such as economic downturns, market fluctuations and changes in customer behaviour.

Get professional advice
You don’t have to create a financial emergency plan by yourself, as there are plenty of professionals who are there to provide expert guidance and support.

A financial planner, for example, can work with you to devise a realistic strategy that reflects your business’s current needs and circumstances.

With an expert at your side, you can make sure your business is resilient, financially sound and able to weather any storms you may face.

If you have any questions about drawing up a financial emergency plan to ensure your business is prepared for all eventualities, please don’t hesitate to get in touch, and we’ll be happy to speak with you.

Savers are missing out on free money…

What do you do with your monthly earnings when they land?

Do you leave all the money sitting in your current account?

Or do you invest some elsewhere, so you can make your money work hard for you and maximise your returns?

Well, a new survey by the Building Societies Association (BSA) reveals that many of us are, worryingly, doing the former rather than the latter.

According to the data, 34 per cent of savers in the UK don’t ever compare the rate on their savings accounts to other alternatives.

Figures also showed that 30 per cent don’t even check what their rates are with their own bank or building society.

Yet 34 per cent of people are storing most of their savings in a current account.

And since these offer little interest at best, they could potentially be missing out on thousands of pounds in what’s essentially free money.

So why are so many people letting this happen?

Well, many of us simply don’t have a disciplined approach to saving.

For example, 33 per cent of those polled said they just put money into savings when they can.

Meanwhile, 34 per cent said they only save whatever they can afford to put aside at the end of the month.

It’s clear that many people need to be taking a more strategic approach to saving if they’re to truly benefit from it further down the line.

By putting some thought and planning into it, you’ll be in a position to not only benefit from more favourable interest rates, but also increase the size of your savings pot.

Of course, you’re a busy person, and we understand that, but making a point of putting a set amount into a high-interest savings account doesn’t take much time and effort.

It’s simply a case of getting into the habit of saving, and having an idea of what you’re saving up for, such as a dream holiday, private school fees or money for a rainy day.

A professional planner can work with you to build a savings strategy, so you can be confident you’re on course to achieve your long-term goals, rather than just hoping for the best.

If you have any questions about planning for the future and maximising your income, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us, and we’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have.