Since 1992, April has been celebrated as UK Stress Awareness Month. This year, its message is more important than ever.
Three years on from the coronavirus pandemic, economic struggles continue to cause huge amounts of worry for millions of Brits.
The cost of living crisis has seen household fuel bills soar, while slow economic growth has affected real-terms wages and unemployment levels.
As the Office for National Statistics (ONS) reports on energy and food insecurity – and the stark choice between eating or heating – many UK workers have cut pension contributions, cancelled protection policies, or turned to credit cards.
Thankfully, expert financial planning can help.
Neglecting your future self, or adding to your debt worries, is only putting off potential problems so why not use ongoing financial advice to give you confidence, a sense of control, and peace of mind now?
Keep reading to find out how.
1. Budget during the cost of living crisis without forgetting your future self
The Bank of England (BoE) recently confirmed that credit card debt grew by £1.2 billion in November. This marked the highest monthly increase since March 2004 and brought the UK’s total outstanding credit card debt to more than £63 billion.
PensionsAge, meanwhile, reports that 51% of UK employers have received an employee request to reduce pension contributions. For 47% of employers, the request was to stop contributions altogether.
At Fingerprint Financial Planning, we can help you to manage your present budget, maintain your future financial security, and relieve stress.
This could mean tracking your incomings and outgoings to see where savings can be made. You might find that lifestyle changes uncover additional disposable cash to build an emergency fund or pay off high-interest debt, providing financial security and decreasing your outgoings in the long term.
The cost of living crisis might mean you have to tighten your purse strings now to focus on the future, but the benefits of doing so could be far-reaching.
2. Planning your retirement your way, through goal-aligned pensions and investments
Recent research, published by The Money Pages, has shown that around 70% of Brits are stumped by financial jargon, with 50% singling out pensions and retirement information in particular as “overwhelming”.
No-nonsense, plain-English discussions about your future are the best way to ensure your future financial security. That’s why, at Fingerprint Financial Planning, we take the time to get to know you and your long-term goals.
This way, we can build a financial plan that considers all of your income streams (pensions, investments, buy-to-let properties) and gives you confidence that you can live your dream retirement lifestyle.
Back in 2020, at the height of the coronavirus pandemic, Royal London looked at the emotional wellbeing effects of financial planning and professional advice and found that those who sought professional help felt:
- More in control (and less anxious) about household finances
- More financially secure and stable, with greater peace of mind
- Less worried about their ability to cope financially in retirement.
Get in touch to find out how Fingerprint’s team of professional advisers could help you.
3. Managing your estate and empowering you to have difficult conversations
The hard work and stress don’t end when you retire. You’ll need to carefully manage your pension income to ensure it lasts for the rest of your life. You might even want to leave some behind for loved ones.
Estate planning can be a very emotive area, and not just because it forces you to face your own mortality.
The Money and Pension Service recently confirmed that 9 in 10 UK adults find it hard to talk about their finances. But with money the main cause of arguments in couples, and family will disputes on the rise, communication is key.
Frank and open discussions about money put you in control.
At Fingerprint, we can help you think about life’s big questions, giving you confidence in the decisions you make, and empowering you to share those choices with loved ones.
Get in touch
Thinking and talking about your long-term plans could help to relieve your financial worries this Stress Awareness Month.
The value of investments (and any income from them) can go down as well as up and you may not get back the full amount you invested. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance. Investments should be considered over the longer term and should fit in with your overall attitude to risk and financial circumstances.