We work with successful individuals, business owners, and their families to help them to take account of where they currently are, make sense of the challenges they face and aim for their future goals and aspirations.
Over the years I had accumulated numerous pensions (five with different providers) and each year I funded my ISA to the maximum available threshold. Our affairs were all over the place. At the last count, my wife and I had 13 different contracts and 10 savings accounts.
I did not know how anything was performing and I found it difficult to keep track of the income payments, fund manager charges and the reams of paperwork. I also had no idea how much these structures would produce in income when I decided to retire.
I met with Warren at Lexington. He started by helping me to establish my goals, the reasons I was saving and what I wanted to achieve. The team then created a Lifestyle Financial Plan and Cashflow forecast to illustrate my current financial position and what the future might look like, based on sensible planning assumptions.
Lexington offered an administration service for my investments so that I could easily keep track of my holdings and how they were performing. Warren explained how capital markets work and the best way to create an investment portfolio.
The team examined the risk of my current portfolio against my tolerance for risk and capacity for investment loss. The result: it was clearly unsuited to my needs.
They put together a passive, low cost, efficient investment portfolio, providing exposure to stock markets all over the world, matched to my attitude toward investment risk. The team at Lexington took care of everything so I didn’t have to worry about a single thing.
I now genuinely understand the importance of asset allocation and why I hold the portfolio I do. I am delighted with the longterm performance and highly recommend the team at Lexington for their considered, structured approach and focus on client care.
I was frustrated. I had been running a successful business for many years and I knew that I should have been saving for my retirement, but I just couldn’t afford it. I needed a strategic plan so my retirement dreams could become a reality, ensuring my family would be looked after.
I had worked with financial advisers before and I was not convinced with their skills or ethics. However, when I met with Warren at Lexington, I was pleasantly surprised. Their approach to Financial Planning was all about me and my family – not the sale of products.
Lexington provided me with the support I needed to improve my business profitability. The team helped me to increase sales by 2% and negotiated with my suppliers to reduce the cost of sales by a further 5%. These seemingly small changes greatly improved our bottom line profitability and I was able to put extra money towards my pension.
Warren looked at whether these funds could be used to repay my borrowings early. However, as this was at a favourable rate, we decided against it. We also considered paying personal bonuses or dividends, but over the long-term, my personal tax situation made funding for my retirement more advantageous.
We set up a Self Invested Personal Pension (SIPP) with a sensible asset allocation (mix of investments) weighted towards more defensive investments. I wanted to preserve my pension pot rather than grow it aggressively. This suited me, as I now don’t have to worry about unnecessary investment risk. I also enjoy that there are no surprises when it comes to my annual review.
As part of the planning process, Lexington undertook a Cashflow analysis, evaluating my income and expenditure to establish my monthly financial requirements.
Warren took time to really understand my goals, aspirations and challenges. We now meet annually and have contact throughout the year to ensure my progress is maintained. I like to bring my Accountant, who Lexington welcomes because he adds great value when business ratios are discussed.
I was fortunate enough to amass wealth both personally and through my family business, resulting in a collection of accounts, investments and property, although no cohesive strategy. I was concerned that I could not trust anyone to help me to manage my affairs and ensure I wasn’t ‘missing anything’. I was also increasingly alarmed by the impact swings in the stock market were having on some of my investments.
I wanted to work with an adviser who would genuinely have my interests at heart. Someone to work with me, and my family, over many years – not lose interest if I didn’t want to buy the latest product.
My wife and I met with Warren at Lexington. He explained the Lifestyle Financial Planning process and how it could help us to gain clarity; then provide a structure to help us achieve what matters most in our life.
It was a refreshingly different approach and we elected to proceed. Over several meetings, Warren took us through an exercise of ‘how do you want to spend the rest of your life?’.
We captured the issues we felt we had previously missed, either because we were too busy, didn’t believe they would be possible, or had the time to think about.
Warren showed what our current position looked like, using a detailed computer-simulated cashflow forecast. He compared this side-by-side with the expenditure required to achieve all of our goals.
We could see that we had sufficient personal assets to support our future needs, based on very conservative growth rates – which was comforting.
We also saw the negative (inheritance tax) consequences of retaining a large portion of our surplus income and capital within our estate.
From an investment perspective, Warren showed us we were taking too much risk. By moving into lower-risk investments we could avoid the volatile market fluctuations.
The entire process took close to one year to fully implement and the team at Lexington worked closely with our other professional advisers to ensure a cohesive strategy.
I wanted to work with a friendly, approachable adviser who could answer all my queries. I’m an 84-year-old widow living on my own after my husband passed away more than ten years ago. I held a pension from my late husband, as well as savings and investments I’d accumulated over the years.
I received paperwork from HMRC and numerous providers. I didn’t understand it, nor did I care to worry about it at this stage in my life. Then, after a discussion with my son, I decided I needed better organisation and peace of mind.
When I met with Warren at Lexington we discussed what I was looking for. He explained the risks associated with my current arrangements and the options available to me in terms I could understand. The team then created a Lifestyle Financial Plan, illustrating my current position and what the future might look like.
Warren invited my son to sit in on the meetings and discuss my financial future. The team at Lexington helped me to reduce my investment risk and structure my affairs more simply and tax efficiently. Warren explained the importance of having a Will and Lasting Power of Attorney and showed me my inheritance tax (IHT) position.
We discussed a number of options regarding my inheritance tax liability. After much consideration, I decided to insure my liability. The team at Lexington set-up a Trust structure, which in the event of my death, will pay for the liability.
Lexington also arranged to take care of my tax returns, using one of their professional partners, which means I don’t have to deal with HMRC anymore.
The team at Lexington completed the application and Trust forms, sent me copies and arranged the medical examinations so that I didn’t have to worry about a thing. They are very flexible and don’t mind if I call whenever I have a concern or query. They call me every few months to check up on how I am getting on and we meet each year.
I just needed to get more organised. I was incredibly busy working in my business and I needed someone to take a view and provide strategic advice. I wanted an independent review of the business to ensure we had the right structures in place to look after our employees, maximise tax efficiency and protect against the unexpected.
Specifically, I wanted a pension solution for the Directors and employees; and insurance against a key employee or Director dying. I also felt each Director needed advice for structuring their own personal affairs in order to achieve their goals.
Firstly, Lexington created a Lifestyle Financial Plan and cashflow forecast for each of our three company Directors and their wives.
Lexington then worked with our Accountant to create a business cashflow and examine key business ratios. This process enabled us to devise clear financial goals for the short, medium and long term.
We decided to set up a Small Self Administered Scheme (SSAS) to tax efficiently plan for retirement and meet our Directors’ personal goals. The SSAS purchased the property we were currently operating from, using a small amount of the pension savings of each Director, a company contribution and a small borrowing from the bank.
This structure allowed us to ‘see’ our pension fund. We also used the SSAS to buy equipment for the production line. By using this scheme we receive tax relief on the pension contributions the company makes, which means we are operating in the most tax-efficient way.
Lexington arranged life assurance and shareholder protection policies for each of the Directors, paid for by the company.
The Life Assurance was written in Trust to maximise tax efficiency and guarantee a speedy payout to the Director’s family should the worst eventuate. We ensured appropriate Trusts and agreements were set-up for the individual shareholder protection policies.
The other Directors and I now have clarity for the future. Lexington meets with us every six months to keep everything on track. We now have a fully funded pension, continuity of income in retirement and a tax-efficient way of owning our own premises. We can rest assured that the business and our families will survive in the event of a catastrophe.