Empower your children to start saving early

Whether you are a parent, grandparent, an uncle, aunt or godparent, you will appreciate that talking to children about money is important, encouraging the younger generation into good savings habits benefits not just them but everyone around them as it can start very interesting conversations.

Below are five ideas for talking to children about money – and some steps you can take to build their savings and encourage a healthy relationship with money.

Start children saving early

You can never start too early when to comes to building good habits. Buy your child a money box and encourage them to collect a certain amount of coins in an agreed time frame, perhaps from pocket money, this will help them understand the concept of saving. You can then sit down together, open the money box and count the savings – they will be amazed – and so proud – of how much they have saved.

Open a savings account in their name –this level of autonomy gives children a feeling of achievement, which can be a real motivator as they grow up. If there is a toy they particularly want, use that as something to save for, it will help them have a goal and something to work towards.

Savings accounts for children can be tax-free which is an added benefit.

Build saving into your daily lives

Money is part of our everyday lives and should be discussed freely. If you go to the shops talk to your child about what the different items cost, which is more expensive and why, let them count out money to pay for small items. Children love being involved and actions like this can help with number recognition, counting, addition and subtraction. It can be a really good way to include maths in their everyday activities, they will be learning without realising.

If your child breaks something or loses a favourite item, encourage them to save up for a replacement rather than buying it yourself. This will help them understand the value of their possessions.

Pocket money

As we said previously, giving children a level of autonomy over their finances is a good way to begin long-term saving. Pocket money teaches children responsibility, which is a valuable lesson when it comes to handling money in the real world.

Let your children make mistakes, they won’t quickly forget the day they wasted their pocket money on sweets just for the sake of it, rather than saving it for something of value – that’s an important lesson.

Don’t just talk the talk, walk the walk

We all want to protect our children from harm and don’t like to see them upset, but try to avoid the compulsion to bail them out if they run out of money before their next pocket money. They will learn how to be more careful if they have lived the experience of not having enough for what they want.

Longer term savings plan

We are all responsible for helping the next generation to get started and take control of their financial future. By making saving part of daily life, we can hand down good habits that will last a lifetime.

If you’d like to talk to one of our team about opening a savings account and making regular contributions for your child, as well as any tax implications this may have, simply get in touch.

Studies have shown a distinct correlation between debt problems and mental health problems, individuals who struggle with debt are sadly more likely to also suffer from stress, depression and anxiety.* Generation Wealth Management Director Andrew Waller has a history of working in debt management and is keen that the company work as a force for good, providing guidance and support to those struggling with the ripple effect of debt. In this blog Andrew talks in more detail about debt, how to manage it and the UK’s stress epidemic.

Debt facts – did you know?

  • On average every British resident spent £969 on interest alone last year**
  • 318 people are declared bankrupt every day in the UK (October to December 2019)**

These are startling figures and something needs to change.

My top tip when in debt is be honest with yourself and close family and to talk about the issues and how you can help yourself to manage the situation. If the debt is serious you may of course need to seek professional help from one of the many support groups and charities who are more than happy to help. Don’t hold back. Address debt now or it will only get worse.

Don’t get hung up on the past either, what’s happened has happened and can’t be undone, the what if’s will only serve as painful reminders of how life could have been different. The most important thing is to learn from your experiences and avoid repeating old mistakes. I very often speak to people who tie themselves up in knots rehashing the past, remember it is the here and now that matters.  It is much better to accept what’s happened and focus on taking positive steps to improve your life right here, right now.

Can you explain the term debt spiral?

In short a debt spiral is the habit of robbing Peter to pay Paul. It can be easy to convince yourself that next month will be different, that this is a short-term issue.  But in fact this just makes the dark cloud hover over your head and feel worse. Feelings of shame and fear can make it incredibly difficult to ask for help, but asking for help is not admitting weakness, it’s showing real strength of character.

In the case of debt, a problem shared truly is a problem halved. Taking that first – often scary – step and admitting your debt struggle will make a huge difference – it’s the first significant step towards getting rid of all that financial burden.

How can someone with a history of debt learn to budget?

If you’ve read our previous blogs you will know that I am a big fan of budgeting. If we are discussing debt, then the term budgeting is never far away. Budgeting is the key to unlocking a stress free, debt free life.

Creating a budget – and sticking to it – is not only a practical first step it will also mentally help you feel better. Knowing what money to spend and that your bills are covered will give you a sense of control and peace of mind that money really cannot buy.

Where can people look for support?

I know that debt can feel isolating. For some reason we struggle to open up and admit to our friends and family that we are struggling, the secrecy required to keep debt a secret can in itself become a stressor. If you can confide in someone, the relief will be palpable. A problem shared truly is a problem halved.

The Generation Wealth Management team can help too. We understand debt and know how to help. If you’d like to speak to one of our experts please do get in touch.

 

* The Emotional Effects of Debt – Denial, Stress, Fear, Depression

**Debt statistics 2020: How far in the red is the UK? | finder.com

 

It is natural to want to pass on your estate to your children when the end comes but having to pay inheritance tax (IHT) can drastically reduce the amount of your estate which ends up with your family. In 2018/19 HMRC was paid a whopping £5.3bn through inheritance tax*.

In this blog the Generation Wealth Management experts look at what can be done to help you ensure you are able to keep hold of the right amount of your estate.

The first step would be to work out what your potential inheritance tax bill could be. There are numerous calculators available to work this out, a simple one can be found here. This will quickly and easily work out your potential worst-case scenario.

Inheritance tax – our top tips

Make a current will

Making a will is an important part of estate planning. Without a current your assets will be distributed according to intestacy rules. If you have specific ideas about who you would like to inherit which assets then you should think about writing a will. Forethought when writing a will can help to open your eyes to your potential inheritance tax bill.

There is no tax paid on assets inherited between spouses, but all assets not left to a husband/wife will be liable.

Be aware of the inheritance tax threshold

The inheritance tax nil-rate band – or the inheritance tax threshold as it is also known – for individuals is £325,000. This nil-rate band is transferable to a spouse or civil partner upon their death, equating to a total nil-rate band allowance of £650,000 for couples.

There is also an additional main residence transferable allowance of £175,000 which can in some instances allow individuals to avoid inheritance tax on property.

Could you gift your assets?

If you are in a position to give your assets away – and you live for a further seven years – then those gifts remain free from inheritance tax. Each year you are also able to give inheritance tax exempt gifts totalling £3,000. In the event of your child getting married you can also give £5,000 as a wedding gift, safe in the knowledge that it is free from inheritance tax. If you are able to gift your wealth this can be a useful way to limit the impact of inheritance tax upon your death.

Put your assets into trust

Assets left in trust do not form part of your estate and are exempt from inheritance tax, although the seven year rule still applies, so assets must be in trust for seven years before they become exempt from inheritance tax. Assets can be placed in a trust for children or grandchildren once they come of age.

Retain the income from your assets in trust

If you take advantage of an ‘interest in possession trust’, you can still retain the income from the assets held in trust, whilst avoiding the inheritance tax implications.

Leave money to charity

Any money left to a charitable organisation will be free from inheritance tax.

Spend it

You worked long and hard to build up your assets and should ensure you enjoy them to the full. Many people sacrifice their retirement to leave money to their families, only for them to be taxed 40% for the privilege.

If this has opened your eyes and you would like to get a clearer picture of what inheritance tax will mean for those you leave behind, speak to one of our experts.

N.B The information in this blog is based upon our understanding of tax legislation and rules in April 2021. These may be subject to change in the future. The benefits of any planning will depend upon your financial circumstances”.

* • Inheritance tax receipts UK 2020 | Statista

 

 

It can be true that earning more improves your financial health, however it is rarely that black and white. In this blog we look and how a solid financial plan can reduce your stress, no matter what salary you earn.

You can feel anxious about your financial situation no matter how much you earn. We often discover that clients with higher salaries also have inflated lifestyles, they must earn more to merely stay afloat. This can be a cause of huge stress and anxiety!

In this post our Generation Wealth Management Director Andrew Waller will discuss what is at the root of money stress and offer ten strategies to lead to a more peaceful life.

What is the cause of financial stress?

Stress itself is nothing more than your body’s response to a situation or a series of events, each person perceives stress differently. However, there are a few common triggers of money stress. In this blog I aim to help you understand and avoid.

Living beyond your means

The biggest and most widespread problem we deal with at generation Wealth Management is people living beyond their means. In a nutshell this is when living expenses exceed your income. Clients will come to use trapped in the cycle of financing their lifestyle using some form of debt, such as a credit card, loan, or home equity line of credit. If you are living beyond your means you need to attempt to cut your outgoings.

Cut your expenditure

The first step when cutting your expenditure is to decide what is truly important to you. Once you have made a note of those you will feel empowered to take control by determinedly cutting your expenses.

Create a spending plan. Can you reduce your housing costs? This is a good place to start because for most people it is the largest single expense. If your housing expense is a source of financial stress, could you consider downsizing or relocating?  Try to ensure that no more than 25% of your gross income is spent on a mortgage or rent payment.

Vehicles are another expensive category to cut, buying a pre-owned vehicle is a much better deal than buying a new one as new vehicles depreciate so much in the first year – perhaps consider a lease deal. Also consider other options to save, such as using public transportation, working from home, or moving to an area where you could drive less.

Automate your saving

Automate as many of your transactions as possible so they happen without you having to think about it. If you have a simple plan in place to achieve your goals, such as retirement, building emergency savings, or buying a home, that can be the secret to alleviating money stress.

It is okay to start small. Even if you can only set aside £25 a month for savings and £25 for retirement, you will be surprised how quickly balances can grow over time. Treat savings like mandatory bills that you owe yourself and automate them when possible.

Stay informed about your finances

Never delay opening bills. It can be tempting to ignore them if you know you can’t pay them them but that will only make you more stressed. Keep track of your spending, your saving, and whether you need to tweak your monthly budget.

Get professional help

Never believe that a financial challenge is a sign of personal failure or weakness. Whatever your situation, millions of people have struggled with the same thing. You and your family can grow stronger by proactively working through your money challenges.

If you would like to discuss your finances with one of our friendly team please do get in touch.

 

The circumstances surrounding the 2021 Budget are nothing short of extraordinary. The challenges businesses and individuals have faced in recent months are unprecedented but – thankfully – the Chancellors Budget contained no major shocks.

This pandemic has a rather different dynamic compared to other economic downturns which the Government have tackled before. Normally the Government would tighten its belt, but in this instance Government measures are being relied upon to support the economy and hold it back from complete collapse. The repeated lockdowns have pushed Government spending to exceptional levels – unseen outside of wartime – the announced extension of this Covid-19 support until September will increase the scale of this spending further.

The question we are asking here at Generation Financial Services, is whether the measures announced by the Chancellor will be enough to sustain the UK’s economic and financial market recovery. The below gives a short rundown of the Budget.

Income tax

The Chancellor announced that the government will increase the Personal Allowance to £12,570 and the basic rate limit to £37,700. The higher rate threshold (the Personal Allowance added to the basic rate limit) will increase to £50,270 for 2021 to 2022.

The forthcoming changes to the Personal Allowance will apply to the whole of the UK. However, changes to both the basic rate limit and the higher rate threshold, will apply to non-savings, non-dividend income in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, and to savings and dividends income in the UK. Income tax rates and thresholds on non-savings, non-dividend income for Scottish taxpayers are set by the Scottish Parliament, not the UK Government.

Capital Gains Tax

The Capital Gains Tax annual exempt amount will remain at £12,300 for individuals, personal representatives and some types of trusts for disabled people and £6,150 for trustees of most settlements for the tax years until 2025 to 2026.

Inheritance tax

  • Nil-rate band to remain at £325,000
  • Residence nil-rate band to remain at £175,000
  • The residence nil-rate band taper will continue to start at £2 million

In short this means that qualifying estates can continue to pass on up to £500,000 with the qualifying estate of a surviving spouse or civil partner being able to pass on up to £1 million without an inheritance tax liability.

Corporation tax

The Government have introduced a small profits rate of 19% for financial year April 2023. The small profits rate will apply to profits of £50,000 or less.

Savings

  • The adult ISA annual subscription limit will remain unchanged at £20,000
  • The annual subscription limit for Junior ISAs will remain unchanged at £9,000
  • The annual subscription limit for Child Trust Funds will remain unchanged at £9,000
  • A new Green National Savings and Investment product is to launch, providing savers with an opportunity to invest in an environmentally conscious manner

State pension

The state pension will increase by 2.5% from 6 April 2021. For State pension recipients, who are entitled to the full level of new single-tier state pension their payments will increase by £4.40 per week from 6 April 2021.

Lifetime pension allowance

The pensions lifetime allowance has been frozen at £1,073,100 until April 2026. This doesn’t stop you savings, you can still save as much as you want to in your pension during your working life – but if it exceeds a total amount (the lifetime allowance), you could face a tax charge when you come to access this money.

If you would like to know what these changes mean for your personal savings and investments, get in touch with one of our experts.

Workers who were furloughed – and self-employed people – experienced a sudden reduction in income, in contrast only a small number of those remaining in employment saw their earnings fall. The NMG survey – a biannual household survey commissioned by the Bank of England to gather data on households’ finances – discovered that more than half (57%) of households, regardless of employment status, reported that they had reduced their spending in the last twelve months. This marks a perfect opportunity to reconsider financial practices for 2021. In this blog our experts look at the first sensible steps to take when budgeting for the coming year.

New year, new budget

There is no getting away from it, 2020 was a unique year, with many facing unprecedented challenges. Taking into account the furlough scheme and its effect on household income, alongside the countrywide lockdowns and their influence on spending, 2020 has been an interesting year from a budgeting perspective.

With so much else to focus on budgeting can easily be forgotten, but remember a budget will always be a lynchpin of financial health. If you don’t keep track of where your money is being spent, it doesn’t take much for spending to spiral out of control. Even if you already have a budget, it is worth reviewing it as spending is likely to need reviewing for the next six weeks of lockdown at least. With schools closed, payment for school meals and school clubs can be discounted, petrol usage will reduce drastically for all bust essential workers, however some costs such as household heating and electricity are likely to increase. These changes should all be accounted for in your budget as it may be that your savings can be supplemented.

However remember to be realistic, if you’ve taken up a hobby such as running or cycling during the pandemic and have therefore developed a new spending habit be upfront with yourself about it.

Budget transparency – debt

Be truthful about your debt. It can be very tempting to stick your head in the sand and hope debt will disappear; sadly it does not. However, there is so much help and guidance available for managing your personal credit concerns.  Our recommendation to you is this: be informed! You have already taken the first step by looking for information on our website, which is fantastic, but the more you read, the more empowered you will feel to become a shrewd saver, investor, and spender.

Set yourself a budgeting goal

Are you saving for your first home? Is a baby on the cards in the near future? Are you going to be one of the many people to add a puppy to the ranks during the Covid-19 pandemic? Whatever your plans, when working out your personal finances, your long-term goals are super important. The sooner you can start setting aside savings for these priorities, the more seamlessly it becomes part of your financial routine.

Whatever 2021 may hold, with a proper budget it can be a positive step for your finances. If you would like to speak to a member of our team about your budgeting needs you can contact one of our friendly experts here.

It is more complicated when the person needing to prepare isn’t yourself, but is your parent, but often it is even more prudent.

Billy’s Story

Billy has been married for 30 years. He is proud that he has always managed the family’s money. But since his accident, Beilly is not able to walk unaided and the pain makes it had to focus, the medication to control the pain affects his concentration and he doesn’t trust his instincts anymore. His wife, Carole, feels exhausted and stressed. Of course, she is worried about Billy’s health. But, on top of that, she is feeling out of her depth as she doesn’t understand how to manage the finances and is scared of missing payments.

John’s Story

In another village, 74-year-old John lives alone. One morning, he fell in the shower and broke his leg. He spent a week in the hospital and 2 months in a rehabilitation centre regaining his strength. Even though his daughter lives 50 miles away, she was able to take charge of her father’s finances right away, because several years ago, John and his daughter made a plan about what should be done in the event of a medical emergency.

Long before his accident, John got all his papers in order, ensuring his daughter knew exactly where to find them. He gave his daughter lasting power of attorney over his finances, hoping she would never need to use it. He ensured that his doctor had written permission to talk with her daughter about his health and insurance claims.

In contrast, Billy always dealt with family money matters, he never talked about the details with Carole as he didn’t want to trouble her and thought he was looking after her. Only Billy knew where he kept their important papers, Billy never expected that his wife would have to take over, but in this instance his lack of planning has made a difficult situation even more challenging for Carole.

As these examples illustrate, prior planning really can make all the difference.

But what is important paperwork?

The answer to this question can vary from family to family, but as a starting point try to include.

  • Names and phone numbers relatives, doctors, lawyers, and financial advisors
  • Medications (keep this regularly updated – date each amend)
  • Location of living will and other legal documents
  • Financial Records
  • Insurance information (life, health, long-term care, home, car) with policy numbers and contact names and phone numbers
  • Names of your banks and account numbers
  • Location of most up-to-date will with an original signature
  • Mortgages information
  • Credit and debit card names and numbers

But where should I begin?

The first step is to gather your important papers and copies of legal documents in one place. Where they are kept is up to you, the important thing is to make sure you tell someone where they are kept in case of an emergency.  If you don’t have close family member, choose a friend, a neighbour, or consult a lawyer. It is important to check each year to see if anything needs adding or updating.

It is bound to be uncomfortable, but it is important to have the difficult discussions with your loved ones about medical decisions, end-of-life preferences, and what you want to happen to your assets before anyone asks them. Forewarned is forearmed.

What if my affairs – or those of my parents – aren’t in order?

You will not be alone if you discover you aren’t as prepared as you thought you were, or that you don’t have the paperwork you need. Finding these issues out now is the whole point of this endeavour.

If you discover that you don’t have the cover you thought you did, or that your cover has lapsed that is also a good thing. It is better to find out when you have a chance to fix it, not at the point you need to draw upon it.

If you are feeling overwhelmed and would like to receive an independent and unbiased view of your affairs, you can speak to a member of our friendly team who will be happy to conduct an audit to highlight any concerns.

 

Creating a stable financial situation does more than alleviate stress; it provides a solid foundation upon which to build a secure financial future. In this blog our experts will explain the ways in which you can give your financial health a wellness check.

What does it mean to be financially healthy?

Your financial health impacts almost all aspects of your life – from affording a spin class after work to what age you’ll be when you can retire.

As with any form of exercise, financial health sadly isn’t something you can achieve through one high intensity workout. It takes time and effort to cultivate your present financial health and to consistently persist and look to the future, even during the hard times.

By managing your day-to-day finances and by thinking longer term, you will be able to create resilient and lasting strategies to carry you through the ups, the downs and everything in between.

Why is financial health so important?

Financial health provides peace of mind, that come what may you are financially stable. Being financially healthy doesn’t mean having money to burn, it means paying attention to different parts of your finances to make sure certain needs are met.

This year has financially tested a large percentage of the population, furlough and sadly redundancies have pushed many to their limits. Ask yourself, if your car broke down or your boiler packed up, could you afford the expense?

If the need was dire, you could look to borrow money on credit. But that’s only an option if you have a good credit history and a good credit score, both of which will be affected by your overall financial health.

Tell-tale signs of bad financial health.

If the below ring true then you may need to work on improving your financial health:

  • I couldn’t afford to pay for a common financial emergency (car breaking down for instance)from my savings
  • I have high credit card balances which I can’t afford to pay off in full
  • I’ve been turned down for a credit application because of a bad credit rating
  • I often stress about not being able to make ends meet
  • I’ve been forced into high interest credit agreements to pay my bills
  • I don’t know how much I spend each month and don’t have a budget

Even if the above do ring true for you, rest assured nobody needs to be stuck with a bad financial situation.

How to improve your financial health

Credit

Pay attention to your credit. Good credit gives you the ability to borrow when you need – or want – to. Credit cards, loans and mortgages – with the best interest rates – will be available to you if you have a good credit score.

You can improve your credit score by paying your credit cards and other debt on time each month. This will quickly have an impact.

Debt

It is easy to take advantage of high credit card limits and rack up debt, especially in the current climate. However, borrowing more than you can afford is a sign of lifestyle inflation which can lead to a spiral of debt payments that if left unchecked, can grow to consume your entire income.

Your first step should be to pay off high-interest debt as this can eat up a big portion of your income. Pay off these types of debt and avoid them if you can.

Savings

Those with good financial health have planned for both emergencies and for the long term. Emergency funds should ideally cover a minimum of three to six months of expenses if you have a stable job. Self-employed and contract workers should double that to at least six to 12 months of expenses in savings.

Rather than relying on making a transfer each month into your savings account, set up a monthly standing order, then money is saved without you having to even think about it.

Retirement

Unless you want to work forever, you will need a retirement plan. A good retirement plan gives you a targeted date to stop working and live the retirement you aspired to.

You can work out your current pension age and learn more about pensions here.

Insurance

It is wise to have a financial backup plan. Major expenses such as incapacitating illness, or fires at home would bankrupt many people without good insurance. Popular and important insurance includes health, home, and life insurance.

Anyone can achieve financial health

Like your physical, taking control of your financial health does not need to be time consuming or costly. You don’t have to be rich to be financially healthy. You don’t need a six-figure income to fund a stable financial future. But your finances won’t fix themselves. A consistent focus on your budget and financial matters is essential, particularly if you are trying to turn around financial struggles.

If you would like to speak to one of our experts about improving your financial health, get in touch today.

I believe that dreams are very important. But if you want to achieve your dreams, you need to set financial goals. These goals can be both short term and longer term and provide a clear direction and guide. I always set myself goals, both in business, finance and in other areas of my life. This helps me to ensure I keep striving to be better at everything I do. It also helps with tracking my progress on a regular basis. So if you have a financial goals and are on a journey to achieve it, or simply want to aim a little higher in life, here are some of my key tips on how to dream big, set goals and achieve what you want in life.

Setting financial goals: don’t be afraid to dream big

Firstly, remember that anything is truly possible. With hard work, determination and some smart planning, you really are capable of so much more than you think. Don’t ever underestimate what you are capable of. Remember to dream big and aim high. You often hear people talk of their five-year plan, this is a good timescale as it is close enough to feel tangible, but far enough away to feel achievable.

Short term financial goals: dream big but plan small

While it’s important to dream big, it can often seem overwhelming.  When we have big dreams the path to realise them can seem incredibly long and arduous. So while you should dream big, it’s important to plan small. Break down your big goals into smaller ones and then tackle them individually. When goals are broken down into achievable segments, it feels more manageable and you are more likely to keep moving ahead.

If you want to swim the channel, you would start with a smaller goal, rather than just focusing on the entire 21 miles. The same goes for your finances, we would all like to be financially secure and have a healthy investment portfolio, but these things take time. This is where short term financial goals become important, working towards and realising these goals can help you stay motivated.

Track your financial progress

When working towards a financial goal, it’s important to track your progress to ensure you are on the right trajectory. If you aren’t where you hoped to be, it’s time to reassess and see what you can do to keep improving and succeeding. If you’re not where you want to be, that’s okay too. Sometimes things aren’t as easy as we expect – and we can’t predict financial shocks such as the Covid-19 pandemic – it just means a little more hard work or planning is needed.

Long term financial goals: get the right support to ensure you stay on track

There are lots of resources you can turn to when you are setting your financial goals. You can find a lot of help and advice online, but there are also companies like Generation Wealth Management which can work with you to create a financial roadmap to get your to your desired destination.

It’s also a great motivation to find someone who has already achieved what you want and can help guide you through the process. Having the right support around you really can make all the difference. If you find yourself getting demotivated, then revaluate, taking small steps consistently over time will eventually lead you to reaching your goals.

Financial goals: failure is often part of the process

I’m not going to sugar coat it for you. If you have big dreams, you need to be prepared for some bumps along the way. Every successful person will have failed more than once in his or her life. The important thing isn’t whether or not you get knocked down, the important thing is to keep going and keep getting back up. Learn from your mistakes and understand they are just part of the process.

At Generation Wealth Management we understand that the first steps to planning your financial future can often be the most daunting,  so if our experts can help please get in touch

What is a SSAS?

A SSAS is a type of defined contribution workplace pension that an employer can self-manage. Only one SSAS is permitted per company and membership is capped at 11 individuals.  A SSAS scheme can be more cost-effective than the setting up of multiple schemes for employees.

The benefits of SSAS?

One of the most attractive qualities of a SSAS is that it can offer the employer increased flexibility about where the scheme’s assets can be invested. This form of pension scheme allows investments into assets that aren’t commonly available. As an example, a SSAS is able to purchase the company’s trading premises (any suitable commercial property) and lease it back to the company. It may also – subject to certain terms and conditions – lend money to the company and purchase the company’s shares.

A SSAS can also borrow money for instance, the SSAS may raise a mortgage to assist with the purchase of the company’s premises and the mortgage repayments may then be covered, in all or in part, by the rental income that the company pays the SSAS.

All of the assets are held in the name of the Trustees; a SSAS fund doesn’t have individual pots for each member, but rather each member is deemed to hold a proportion of the scheme’s assets as a whole.

When are SSAS most suitable?

This type of pension is most often utilised by small or family run businesses. The scheme is open to both employees and their family members, meaning it can be offered to individuals who don’t work for the company directly.

The tax benefit of SSAS

Pension contributions to a SSAS are eligible for tax relief. Individuals get relief at their nominal rate, therefore basic rate tax payers get basic 20% rate relief, higher rate tax payers  get 40%, and finally additional rate payers get 45%. It is worth noting that only basic rate tax relief is applied to contributions in pension funds the remainder is claimed back via self assessment.

Contributions paid into the scheme by the employer also qualify for tax relief which can help reduce the company’s total tax liability.

When can you draw a SSAS

Members of SSAS can start drawing benefits from the age of 55. There many options to drawing your money, including, the option to take the first 25% as a tax-free lump sum or to receive 25% of each withdrawal tax-free, however any funds drawn in excess of the tax free lump sum allowance will be subject to personal tax.

The amount of benefits will depend on contributions and the performance of the investments. Members can also choose to draw their pension as an income either by purchasing an annuity, or via income drawdown. The information is this blog is based upon current pension and tax legislation and can change in the future.

If you would like to learn more or to speak to a member of our team get in touch today.