Our Financial Planning Process
A Personalised Financial Plan for Your Situation
At Fisher Investments UK, we believe the financial planning process should start with a detailed understanding of your long-term goals, needs and objectives. We believe having a personalised financial plan will help guide you when making decisions about your financial future.
To create a personalised financial plan, some people choose to hire a financial planner, whilst others prefer to create and manage their own. For those who wish to oversee their own financial planning process, there are three main components to financial planning:
- Evaluate your current financial situation
- Create your financial plan
- Review your financial plan regularly
Fisher Investments UK offers clients the resources they need to feel more comfortable about their financial futures, including financial planning services. This means helping clients with financial plans so they can make decisions holistically and confidently. The Private Client Advice Group can help clients with budgeting and cash-flow analysis, pension planning (including contributions, lifetime allowance (LTA) and drawdown), estate and Inheritance Tax (IHT) planning, and tax efficient strategies to help maximise retirement income.
Let’s take a closer look at the three main components of the financial planning process and how they are used to craft a personalised financial plan.
Evaluating Your Current Situation
Creating a personalised financial plan first requires understanding the current state of your finances. This holds true whether you’re creating your own financial plan or working with a financial adviser such as Fisher Investments UK. Without a clear picture of your current finances, it can be difficult to create a financial plan to help you achieve your long-term goals.
See Our Investment Guides
The world of investing can seem like a giant maze. Fisher Investments UK has developed several informational and educational guides tackling a variety of investing topics.
Measuring Your Net Worth and Setting Goals
Take stock of both sides of your financial ledger: assets and liabilities. This helps you determine your current net worth and assess your overall financial health by stacking up what you own versus what you owe. This can serve as your starting point for a complete, holistic financial plan.
After determining your net worth, you need to evaluate your income and expenses (in other words, your cash flows). Knowing your current cash-flow situation, both income and expenses, can help illustrate areas where you may need to adjust spending to help reach your financial goals.
When evaluating your cash flows, use financial records like bank account and credit card statements to get the most accurate numbers possible. Be sure to cover necessities, nice-to-have items and contingency costs (things like home or vehicle repair, etc.) in your cash-flow evaluation.
It’s also essential to establish realistic short and long-term financial goals. If your current net worth is like a starting point, then setting goals is like determining the financial “destinations” you’d like to reach. Think about what you want to accomplish financially and how much that will likely cost in the future.
Crafting a Personalised Plan
Once you have created a detailed picture of your financial situation, established financial goals and evaluated your cash flows, you can begin to create a personalised financial plan. When creating your financial plan, you should consider factors such as your time horizon, legacy plans, risk management, future tax liability and long-term care costs.
Run your financial plan through multiple scenarios and stress-tests to confirm it will help you reach your long-term goals. Your financial plan may lead you to modify your current investing strategy and asset allocations. Perhaps you’ll see a need to generate additional cash flow or retirement income from your investments to supplement your wealth, which may involve the need for you to save and invest more now. Working with a reputable financial adviser such as Fisher Investments UK can help streamline this process and help you to take advantage of tax efficient investing opportunities to help you reach your goals.
Perform an Annual Review
Creating your initial financial plan isn’t the end of the financial planning process. Life happens and circumstances change, and you should regularly review your financial plan to help ensure you’re on the path to achieve your financial goals. Fisher Investments UK recommends reviewing your financial plan at least annually, either on your own or with your financial adviser.
As part of your annual financial plan review, take a fresh look at your current assets and liabilities. This exercise should give you an idea of your updated financial ‘health’. Then review your current cash-flow situation. Doing so helps you determine if you are staying on budget to maintain your wealth, or if adjustments are needed. Check that you are taking advantage of the various tax exemptions and allowances available each year, such as contributing to pensions and ISAs, as well as using your capital gains tax (CGT) annual exempt amount and dividend allowance.
Finally, an annual review is good, but consider looking over your financial plan any time you’ve had any major life changes: marriage or divorce, new grandchildren, a death or major illness, a new home or a change in retirement status. Examine how the event impacts your financial future and adjust your plan accordingly.
Fisher Investments UK’s Approach to Financial Planning
At Fisher Investments UK, we offer the financial resources you need. Our services focus on areas we believe are critical to reaching your long-term financial goals, including investment optimisation, cash-flow analysis, tax optimisation and estate planning. Below you’ll find a comprehensive overview about our services and how we help create a personalised financial plan tailored to you.
As a client, you have access to Fisher Investments UK’s Private Client Advice Group based in London, which can review your individual circumstances, goals and accounts (such as pensions, ISAs and investment accounts) and provide recommendations designed to create a financial plan that helps you achieve your goals and objectives in a tax-efficient way.
We can review your existing pensions, ISAs, investment bonds, investment account and trusts and advise on whether any changes may be suitable to meet your financial goals and objectives. If you have multiple pension plans from prior employers or various personal pensions, we can help determine if you could benefit from consolidating them into a SIPP (Self-Invested Personal Pension).
Life is full of surprises and changing income needs. A robust financial plan should include a thoughtful approach to meeting expenditure needs over time. We are able to review your circumstances and adapt your plan using cash-flow modelling tools—helping increase the likelihood that your portfolio lasts as long as you need it to.
Retirement Planning, Pensions and the Lifetime Allowance
Ensuring you’ll have the income you need in retirement is critical—we can help you plan appropriately by discussing pension contributions and other strategies to help put you on a path to achieving your goals. Pension contributions are an extremely tax efficient way to invest and we can help clients to maximise those contributions, using ‘carry forward’ allowances from previous tax years where appropriate. If you currently draw income from your portfolio or plan to do so in the future, we can discuss your options, such as releasing a 25% tax-free lump sum, drawing a sustainable income from your pension via flexi-access drawdown or by taking an Uncrystallised Funds Pension Lump Sum (UFPLS).
We stay informed on major legislative changes that could impact your pensions, ISAs and other investment accounts. We specialise in helping clients navigate the lifetime allowance (LTA) and help ensure the eventual benefits are paid out at the lowest marginal tax rate possible.
Achieve Tax Efficiency*
Whether you are looking to release a tax-free lump sum from your pension or wish to begin withdrawing income from your portfolio, we can help you optimise tax efficiency. By utilising capital gains, income tax, savings and dividend allowances and by structuring your ‘cash flows’ across your various accounts to make use of these allowances, we can help you satisfy your income requirement in a tax-efficient manner.
Estate and Inheritance Tax (IHT) Planning
We can provide advice on estate and IHT planning to help you make use of allowances and reliefs in order to minimise a possible future IHT liability where appropriate. We can help you to understand the rules around UK IHT as well as advising you on utilising your annual allowances and nil rate bands, making gifts in a tax efficient manner and setting up and managing trusts where appropriate.
Understanding Financial News and Legislation
Whether you come across new financial news or hear about proposed changes to financial legislation, we can discuss how changes may affect you. We stay up to date with current financial topics and regulatory changes to be able to inform you of any impact the changes may have on your investments or financial situation.
*Fisher Investments UK is not a tax adviser or legal adviser. You should consult your own tax professional and solicitor for tax and legal advice.