It’s time to get all of your Ducks in a Row….

During the last year we saw some significant changes to the world of financial planning and perhaps this is now the year to consider how those changes will impact on you and your family’s financial planning.

The headlines of 2016 centred on Brexit and the changed face of politics in America. It is clear that the world has changed significantly, which has and will continue to impact on the economy, which in turn will should lead you to think how this may impact on you and your family.

In the financial world we also observed great change which will make a difference to those who may be looking to retire or withdraw capital early from their pension arrangements, for those people wishing to create more flexibility over how they can take an income from their pension funds or for those who now wish to improve the death benefits for their families. It is no understatement to suggest that you should now be thinking about retirement options given the changes introduced.

Interest rates remained flat which is good news for those with mortgages but not helpful to those with savings in bank and building society accounts. A recent article from Bloomberg suggested that even after the first interest rate rise, the market is pricing in only very slow increases, far slower than seen in previous cycles of rising rates with a return to 3% not expected until 2025. Low rates of interest lead to low rates of return on your hard earned savings, it really is that simple and with forecasts suggesting this will not change for some time perhaps it is now time to consider alternate saving and investment options.

Inheritance tax rule changes previously announced by the chancellor will take effect from the 2017/18 tax year. There will be an additional Inheritance Tax allowance for those who own their own properties or who have sold their property to fund their own long term care. Careful estate planning with an effectively crafted Will are essential to reduce potential tax costs for those that you leave behind.

For us at Liberty Partnership 2016 passed by very quickly and our instinct is that 2017 will do exactly the same. We would encourage that at some point during the course of this year that you take stock, take a short time out and cast an eye over your own finances to see how recent events and changes will have impacted on you.