Financial Planning

We encounter different financial challenges as we move through life’s stages. Some we can reasonably anticipate and delight in, others can be less predictable and worse still, unwanted.

What is certain is that in the course of your lifetime you will experience many situations that require financial planning which are not ‘day to day’.

At RobMac we have been assisting our clients with a wide range of financial planning requirements for 25 years. We know the types of issues you may be faced with at different stages of your life and those that you have a desire to plan for. We will also highlight others that may be beneficial to you in line with your personal circumstances.

Protection   

Retirement  

Investments 

Mortgages 


How we can help – case studies

Professional couple with a young family planning for the future

Background

Richard, 44 and Morven, 39 have 2 children. Jonny, 10 and Alice, 8. Richard is a senior manager of a leading whisky distillers and Morven is a partner in an Edinburgh firm of solicitors.

They were introduced to Robson Macintosh & Co by one of the other partner’s in Morven’s firm. Their high-level brief was clearly laid out. They wanted to better understand their finances, start planning for the future and simplify their affairs as much as they are able.

The adviser’s at RobMac met with them and the first meeting was spent talking about their current position, looking at future plans and aspirations; both short and long term, and making an assessment of existing savings.

Pensions & Investments

Both has several pensions from previous employments, including defined benefit (DB), stakeholder and several personal pensions hosted by insurance companies. Richard has a current pension, but Morven has none.

They each have cash savings accounts, investment ISAs (Individual Savings Accounts) as well as a small managed portfolio.

Recommendation Process

We met again 4 weeks later to discuss their objectives, the appropriateness of their current savings program and how we could help them meet their objectives.

We used a cash flow model that takes into account all assets and liabilities; and importantly, all future known cash flows in and out of the household to give an overall view of their financial position now and in the future. Now they have the genesis of a financial plan.

The cash flow model shows them how much extra cash they need to save each month to meet their aspirations. It is our job then to apportion this cash in line with their attitude to risk.

We were able to restructure and consolidate many of the old pensions reducing costs, simplifying administration, and investing in a more appropriate and tailored selection. Morven now contributes to a new plan on a monthly basis. Both can see clearly online 24/7 how the funds are progressing, as well as 6 monthly reports. Richard has projections for his DB scheme and both have State pension forecasts. Lastly, we updated all death benefit nominations.

We refocused the existing cash and investments, again reducing costs and adding a new investment strategy which included saving for university fees which can be drawn down in the future. This takes into account environmental and social governance.

Our mortgage management team looked at various borrowing options including obtaining better terms and how capital could be repaid before retirement. Was this realistic?

Finally, we reviewed life cover in detail and decided that Morven should take out a term assurance plan with the cover of 4x her salary. She also took up an income replacement plan to cover illness and absence from work.

Wills

These were updated and Power of Attorney included.

Conclusion

Richard and Morven have come into see us on an annual basis. These meetings allow us to update our information, check on progress, make any changes that are needed adjust cash flow model and report on investment progress. Retest, re-track and reboot.

They now have peace of mind that their dreams are achievable and on track; we simplified their plans and policies through consolidation, while reducing risk through superior investment management. This is all covered by regular statements and online access to their accounts.


Financial Planning FAQ

  • Tell me about the financial planning process

    Financial planning is a multi-step process that provides you with two important things:

    • An in-depth review of your current position.
    • A roadmap that shows you how to reach your goals and objectives for the future.

    Financial planning is a process as opposed to an event.

  • How do you create a financial roadmap?

    First, we focus on your goals, objectives, values, and priorities. Your immediate goal may be to reduce tax, current and future income taxes or to save for your children.

    University education may be an intermediate goal and your long-term goal to save enough for a comfortable retirement is likely to be one of your most important contributions.

    Another great goal is creating wealth and leaving a legacy for family or perhaps a charity. You may already be on the way to achieving your goals and simply need a new strategy, professional insight, or a sense check of your plans. Whatever your unique position is, everyone needs a regular series of reviews. That is why we do an in-depth review.

    Next you need to know how to set about and working towards this. by focusing on cash flow, investments, taxes, pensions and retirement plans, loans and mortgages, estate planning, insurance matters, savings, and deposits. We can design and help implement a financial plan for you. We then manage this for you going forward.

  • What does our ideal client relationship look like? What is the right client for Robson Macintosh Financial Planning?

    It is vital that you find the right fit for your financial planning needs. This is critical and this relationship is important for us too. Or ideal client is a pleasure to work with, interesting both personally and financial and one that values and appreciates our professional advice.

    Clients come to us because they recognise that they are not experts in financial planning or implementation and want to work with experts who do. Our ideal client understands risk, is prepared to work for the long term and believes in rebalancing investments and a balanced portfolio.

  • Is this a big commitment?

    It is, but the benefit is that if you follow and review your plan in a disciplined manner you will be able to reach your goals.

  • Can I do this on my own?

    Our experience is that the failure rate of this strategy is high, off the charts in fact. Our house view shaped over many years, is that we cannot recommend implementing this on your own and we will not work on this basis, the stakes are too high.

  • I have already accumulated substantial assets and I think I am doing quite well?

    As you progress and build for the future things can seem more complicated than at first. You need to be sure you are on track. Perhaps you no longer have the time and inclination to do things yourself. We help with the financial plans and investments of many sophisticated clients and they find this beneficial.

  • What is your investment philosophy?

    As financial planners and investment advisers we believe that the purpose of a client’s investment portfolio is to find current and or future financial objectives. The design of the portfolios must consider financial objectives, attitude to risk, time scales, capacity for loss, needs for current income and liquidity as well as other considerations such as tax and environmental, social and governance matters.

    None of us can predict the future and we do not think we and any investment managers will make the right decision every time. We do believe that by studying historical trends and approaches of successful investment managers can provide valuable insight. The appropriate degree of asset allocation for your goals and risk tolerance is the most important component in what we do, we firmly believe that having a well-diversified, well balanced portfolio, following long term buy and hold strategies and having patience will increase the likelihood of achieving your long-term goals.

  • How much will my financial plan cost?

    Our initial meeting is free. Fees will be discussed at this meeting and if we are to proceed these will be outlined in a cot of service and fees document or in exceptional circumstances by project cost. Total fees will vary from client to client based on your specific needs or the complexity involved.

    Once implementation has been completed most relationships will evolve into an ongoing wealth managed relationship with fees charged as a percentage of assets.

  • Who will advise me?

    In all cases our work is collegiate, and all our advisers may work on some aspect of your initial in-depth review, implementation, and financial plan. At the initial stage you will be introduced to advisers and administrators but after this stage you will have a nominated adviser and admin contact. You are welcome to contact us at any time.

  • What will things look like in the future?

    We will meet on a regular basis to review your plan and check that it is on track to meet your goals, no one knows the future but planning for it gives you the best change of reaching your goals.

  • How many years have you been investing?

    We have been managing client portfolios since 1992. Using a variety of techniques that have been honed and improved over time.

  • Where do you invest client funds?

    Our policy is to decide on investment strategy and then outsource the management of this to professional fund managers.

  • Should I spread my investment?

    Generally, the answer is almost certainly yes. Your investments will include UK and overseas shares, gilts, infrastructure, and other assets.

  • What does a good strategy look like?

    This should contain a broad spread of assets and be managed in line with our philosophy, your attitude to risk and need for risk, timelines, and goals.

  • Will you challenge me if you disagree with my thoughts?

    Our clients’ discussions are many and varied, no two are the same. At all times we will let you know if we disagree with an action you wish to pursue if we feel this will cause you financial harm. We are not yes men.

  • Are you concerned about the planet?

    Yes, we take environmental, social and governance matters seriously. Our portfolios and fund manager partners cannot screen out every perceived area of investment that might be regarded as non-green, but we can ensure through them that economic activity is accountable and take in issues such as sustainability, quality of life, using new technologies safely and thinking about the future.

  • What are your timescales?

    We feel cash in the bank is the right place for 6 months spare expenditure, a holiday fund and tax purposes in the next 12 months.

    Once this is covered then any spare income or capital can be invested and the simple answer is the longer the better, at least 3-5 years but preferably more. The longer you leave investments the more risk you can afford to take.

  • Do you provide mortgage advice?

    Yes, we do, we offer a comprehensive mortgage management service covering all aspects of buying a home, first time buyers, remortgage, buy to let and equity release. In most cases this will be your most important financial investment and we can also help with legal matters, stamp duty costs and surveys. We are independent and have access to the whole of market. Our mortgage adviser is Alison Mitchell, and she can be reached at alison@robmac.co.uk


  • Jeffrey Lewis, Director & Adviser – jeff@robmac.co.uk

    Lisa Doig, Director & Adviser – lisa@robmac.co.uk

    Andrew Hannay, Director & Adviser – andrew@robmac.co.uk

    Alison Mitchell, Director and Mortgage Adviser – alison@robmac.co.uk

    Paul Porteous, Operations and Compliance Director – paul@robmac.co.uk

    Arron Raiker, Office Manager – arron@robmac.co.uk

    If you would like to discuss your financial position further with one of our consultants (without obligation), then click on the button and select a suitable time and date to arrange either a  meeting.

     

    If you would like to learn more about how Rob Mac can help you then please call us now on 0131 226 6700 or send us a message by clicking here.

    Financial Planning,
    Key Contacts:

    Andrew Hannay
    Andrew Hannay
    andrew@robmac.co.uk
    LinkedIn
    Jeff Lewis
    Jeff Lewis
    jeff@robmac.co.uk
    Lisa Doig
    Lisa Doig
    lisa@robmac.co.uk