New Model Adviser Top 100 IFA 2017

Investment Solutions have done it again - we have been rated in the top 100 IFA's in the UK for the 2nd year running.  It is very pleasing that given challenging conditions we are deemed as a leading IFA practice. Each & every member of the team made a significant contribution to our success and we thank them all for their endeavours. By putting clients first, acting within an ethical manner & treating clients fairly is paramount to what we do.

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The ultimate 80's throwback!

A Ford Sierra RS500 Cosworth that's done just 6,000 miles in three decades and is tipped to sell for £115,000

•    The 1988 Ford Sierra RS500 Cosworth was sold by an exotic car dealer in 2007 for just £28,000
•    Fast forward a decade and it could cost three figures when it sells at auction in Birmingham
•    Just 500 were ever made and the one for sell is one of 58 that was finished in the boy racer's favourite white paint

The lucky seller will expect to make a tidy return, but we all know that for every one low mileage Cosworth there are a thousand Austin Allegro’s!

Need Independent investment or savings advice? We are here to help.

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Why are people 'cashing' in their pensions?

HMRC’s latest pension freedom statistics show that over 500,000 people have withdrawn a total of £9.2bn from their pensions using the flexible rules since April 2015, with an average of three payments per person.

New research from Retirement Advantage among over 55s who have used the freedoms to access their pensions flexibly shows how people are using this money:

28% spent the cash on home improvements
26% put the money in a savings account, while 19% invested the money elsewhere
19% went on holiday
13% bought a new car
12% paid off the mortgage or other debts

………….. We doubt many Lamborghinis have been bought!


Retirement Advantage has revealed new research which shows a significant number of Gens x and y are receiving gifts from older relatives, with these ‘living inheritances’ helping out with the everyday cost of living as well as weddings, holidays and getting on the housing ladder.

The data shows 2 in 5 people (39%) aged 50 or over have helped children or grandchildren financially in the last six months, with the top five reasons for gifting being:

Birthdays 25%; university 23%; general loans 22%; paying off debt 19%; house deposit 18%.

'Living inheritances are clearly helping out cash-strapped children and grandchildren who may be struggling with the day-to-day cost of living. There are some simple rules to remember when gifting which should ensure you don’t fall foul of the tax man. The main thing to remember if you are aged 55 or over, and thinking of gifting some of your pension, is that any withdrawal over the first 25% is treated as income and will be taxed as such'.

Government website explaining the tax rules around gifting:

Need advice? We are here to help

Inheritance Tax Receipts Rise

Exceptionally high levels of stamp duty are reported to be discouraging house sales and in particular discouraging older people from down-sizing. Stamp duty on the sale of a £2 million home will amount to £143,000 and on a £600,000 home to £20,000.

The government is also benefiting from increased receipts from inheritance tax (IHT) which result from older people hanging onto their high-value homes, For the first time ever, IHT receipts have exceeded £5 billion, which represents a 9% increase over the previous year and is the highest they have been since the early 1980s.

It is estimated that residential property accounts for one third of the typical estate on which inheritance tax is payable.

Need advice to reduce your IHT? We are here to help

Understanding the Residence Nil Rate Band (RNRB)

The UK government's recent introduction of the RNRB, a tax free allowance which could reduce the value of an estate that is subject to inheritance tax (IHT), has signalled a major shift in the estate planning landscape. Its practical application can be complex and it is therefore essential that you are equipped with the information you need if your estate is impacted.

We are here to help you through the maze!

Property as an asset class?

A little over a year ago, concerns of a repeat of the 2007/8 property market collapse were at the forefront of investors’ minds. Last summer, the UK commercial property market underwent a short, sharp correction and then rebounded and is showing signs of resilience in the face of ongoing political and economic uncertainty. For the first half of 2017, UK commercial property has generated a total return of 5.3% according to CBRE.

For a view as to holding regulated property funds within your portfolios – feel free to contact us

Winning the Rat Race: The majority of the class of 2017 are retiring early

New research from Prudential annual retirement survey has found: 

•    It’s an early retirement for six in 10 planning to give up work this year
•    But they will be £1,250 a year worse off than those who work until their retirement date
•    Those retiring early are more confident that their pension and savings will provide sufficient retirement income
•    Wales and London are the UK’s early retirement capitals

Need advice? We are here to help.

Pension Maze

These days retirement is complicated.  Increasingly people are choosing to retire gradually.  And for many the journey will last 20-30 years or more.  Then there's the conundrum of changing individual personal circumstances, health, wealth and competing priorities to always consider.

We are here to help you through the Pension Maze.