As we enter the New Year, there’s no better time to work on fine-tuning your financial plans for the future and reviewing your current investments. Our team at Raymond James Market Harborough recognise the importance of having a financial plan in place to achieve your financial goals, and we endeavour to help you every step of the way. We work together with clients in different stages of the investor life cycle to plan for a number of life events; including buying a house, retirement, and even when the time comes, we help to plan for the passing down of wealth to the next generation.

To help put you on the right track to achieving your financial goals, here are our key tips for investing in 2017. If you would like more information on our services, we are offering a free New Year review of your investments by our wealth management professionals. Why not start now on your journey to achieving your financial goals?

–         Increase your Personal Tax Efficiency

It is important that you make the most of personal tax allowances such as the ISA allowance, SIPP (Self-invested personal pension) allowance and Capital Gains allowance to ensure that you are getting the most from your investments and savings. ISAs are tax free, and investment ISAs allow you the potential to make higher returns in exchange for the reduced liquidity and higher risk involved in holding investments over cash.

As of the 2016/17 tax year, there were changes to the level of taxation of dividends and cash. The first £5,000 of dividend income now incurs no taxes; however any amount above suffers the dividend ordinary rate of 7.5%. Additionally, basic rate tax payers have a tax-free savings allowance of £1,000 per annum, and higher rate taxpayers an allowance of £500. It still makes sense to hold income producing assets in an ISA or SIPP and growth assets in a dealing account as income tax continues to be higher than capital gains tax which can be avoided due to the £11,100 tax free personal allowance on capital gains.

–         Use your Cash

Interest rates are likely to remain low in the near future, and in the long term the markets typically produce higher returns than cash. Investing in the markets rather than holding cash means higher risk, however the higher risk, the higher return potential. The level of risk you are willing to take is unique to you, and taking a low level of risk is fine. It is important for investors to hold cash, however holding excess cash may lead to lower returns over the long term.

–         Simplify your Investments

When you are dealing with investment providers and comparing investments, it is easy to get caught up with investment jargon and momentum within the markets, overcomplicating the investment process. We simplify the investment process for clients, tailoring portfolios to their financial needs and reviewing their investments on a regular basis to ensure the portfolio continues to be well positioned for their unique needs. Additionally, our clients can monitor their portfolio as frequently as they like through their own Raymond James online account.

–         Consolidate your Investments

Holding multiple portfolios with different financial advisers can lead to problems. The level of diversification in your investment portfolio in terms of asset classes and sectors is important to mitigate risk. This level of diversification is based on your overall risk profile, and holding multiple portfolios under different investment managers could result in an incorrect overall level of diversification. Having multiple advisers can also complicate your financial accounts, and make the management of personal tax allowances as well as overall financial goals difficult.

By managing your investments holistically in line with your overall risk profile and the right level of diversification, this ensures your portfolio is best positioned within the market, and allows us to make the most of your tax allowances and increase the overall tax efficiency of your investments. By consolidating your investments, you are able to view your investments together and monitor them either online or at a regular review in an uncomplicated manner.

 

If you have any questions, or wish to discuss any of the above topics in more detail, don’t hesitate to call our team on 01858 898023.