Brexit looms over everyone's financial future as politicians wrangle over how - or even still whether - to exit the European Union. For pensioners and people saving for old age, the most immediate impact of Brexit will be on their investments if that is how they are funding retirement. Markets are in turmoil for many reasons as we enter 2019, and further volatility is anticipated around the March departure date from the EU. We look at what might happen and which pension savers could be most affected below. Pensions in 2019: Government has stuck to its 'triple lock' pledge and will hike the state pension to £168.60 a week in April State pension age changes have started kicking in for men as well as women, with everyone reaching their 65th birthday now facing a delay before getting their payments. But the Government has so far stuck to its 'triple lock' pledge guaranteeing the elderly an annual state pension increase of at least 2.5 per cent. RELATED ARTICLES Previous 1 … [Read more...] about What you need to know about pensions in 2019
Annuity to pay for care home fees
The interest rate you pay, the type of mortgage that buyers choose, and the possibility of paying off the loan early are all factors to consider when buying a property, writes John LoweI don't think it would be an overstatement to say that property — and, in particular, owning it — was something of a national obsession.It is easy to understand why: home ownership offers security and the potential to make a capital gain. Indeed, in the 10 years up to 2006, residential property prices had grown at an average rate of 12% per annum.Sadly the downturn took hold, but there are still opportunities in the property market especially now for those with money and income. Only the fortunate few can afford to buy a home outright. For the rest of us, saving up until we had the full cost of the apartment or house we wanted to buy would be impractical.Leaving aside the fact that it would probably take decades, we would need to live somewhere else in the … [Read more...] about Planning pays off when looking to put roof over your head
Carl Lamb, managing director of Almary Green Archant My dad is in his mid-eighties and is getting quite frail. My mum died a few years ago and he gets by with a daily help coming in to clean and cook his main meal. However, he’s now struggling to get himself up and dressed and has fallen over a couple of times in his bungalow so we think it’s time to think about a care home (he agrees). He has a decent pension and an investment portfolio of around £250,000 on top of his bungalow so money isn’t too much of an issue, but he is worried that his estate will dwindle away if he spends several years in a home. Is there anything we can do to avoid this such as giving some of his estate away before he goes into care?Response from Carl Lamb of Almary GreenThere are quite strict rules to prevent “deliberate deprivation of assets” – ie people giving away large portions of their wealth in order to get state help with care fees.If someone is guilty of … [Read more...] about Ask the Expert: How can I make sure my dad doesn’t lose all his money paying his care fees?
Most people in Britain consider owning their own homes as a higher priority than saving for retirement - but that doesn't mean you can't enjoy the best of both worlds when it comes to giving up work, according to Plymouth-based Coast Financial. Provided you've been able to pay off your mortgage, equity release is a fantastic way to use your property to help you live a more comfortable life in retirement. Martyn Burgess, independent financial advisor at Coast Financial, says: "Equity release can be used for a number of reasons: to provide you with an income; to give you a lump-sum payment; releasing money to help your children or grandchildren get on the property ladder; consolidating your outgoings (paying off a credit card) or perhaps even a holiday of a lifetime. "A lot of people are approaching retirement age and they cannot live on their state pensions, or whatever pensions they've acquired over the years, but they've been in a position to pay off their mortgages. You can use … [Read more...] about How equity release can free up money to enjoy your retirement
HOW to manage their pension is not the only challenge facing folk in retirement. Other problems include care bills, rising inflation and insurance premiums, and property maintenance costs. The consumer champion Which? talked to its retired members. asking them to name their key financial struggles. Today Mr Money looks at their concerns and how to beat them. PAYING FOR CARE Many Which? members said the biggest challenge they’d faced was finding a care home for a relative and working out how to pay for it. Those with capital of less than £23,250, or £27,250 in Scotland and £40,000 in Wales, are entitled to local council care funding. Those with complex needs can qualify for continuing healthcare, where the NHS pays nursing home fees. Self-funders face care home fees of between £32,000 and £72,000 a year. Which? member Martin Ross told of the emotional and financial stress of having to organise care for his 101-year-old mother over the past decade. Rather … [Read more...] about How OAPs can beat the financial traps lurking in pensions, care, property and insurance