As well as managing client investments, we can give financial advice on all aspects of clients’ circumstances.   We offer a range of financial planning services from an overall review of financial affairs (including a review of existing investments for new clients) to retirement planning, inheritance planning, tax planning and arranging protection policies.  We try to give the type of advice we would want to receive ourselves if we were not financial professionals, and avoid jargon as much as possible.  Thames Valley Investments primarily provides financial planning in the Thames Valley and Home Counties.

Financial Reviews

While ongoing reviews of client investment portfolio fall under the remit of investment management, we are also able to provide a comprehensive review of all financial affairs as required.  This service tends to be of most use to new clients or to existing clients who are going through a significant change in their financial circumstances (such as retirement).  The service includes a detailed report on current financial circumstances and recommendations on any changes that could help optimise them.

Retirement Planning

Making provision for retirement is one of the most important parts of anyone’s financial planning. How are clients’ going to provide enough income for themselves when finishing work?  There are many ways to save and invest for the long term, but none offers the same tax benefits as a pension fund. However, these tax benefits alone are not enough – it is essential that funds placed in pensions are invested effectively.  Our knowledge of pensions and our investment expertise make a powerful combination.

Inheritance Planning

Inheritance tax used to be an issue only for the very wealthy.  However, thanks to the spectacular rise in property values over the last two decades, many more people have assets valued in excess of the threshold for inheritance tax.  There are many ways in which the potential cost can be reduced – for example, by the use of trust provisions in wills, life assurance and lifetime gifts if appropriate.  However, most people would like to do this without reducing the income they receive from their assets.  We have extensive knowledge and qualifications to advise on the various ways to manage inheritance effectively.  Some solutions can be provided through our investment management function.

Financial Planning Fees

Financial planning fees are charged for any work which is not part of the ongoing provision of our investment management service.  This includes retirement planning, inheritance tax planning, arranging insurance policies and reviewing new client portfolios.

Our normal fee for financial planning is £150 per hour.

The following exceptions to this hourly rate apply:

  1. For arranging enhanced annuities, we charge a 2% fee, with a £500 minimum
  2. For arranging pension annuities, we charge a 1.5% initial fee, with a £500 minimum.
  3. For arranging insurance policies, we are paid by commission (which varies by policy and will be declared in each case before the contract is entered into)

VAT

We are currently required to charge VAT for our financial planning, discretionary investment and Thames Valley Investments portfolio services.  We do not currently charge VAT for our advisory investment service, but we believe this situation may change at some point in the future and will let our clients know if it does.

The Retail Distribution Review

The RDR is legislation, designed in part to remove the conflicts of interest that can arise from wealth managers receiving commission from product providers.  Our fee structure is fully RDR-compliant. We collect our fees from our clients and the rates are agreed in advance.  More on the RDR can be found on the FCA’s website.