If you had your time again?

08 November 2020

Regret is a strong word and one that many of us may prefer to avoid. However, as we all know too well, life happens, and some changes can be beyond our control. The year 2020 is an ideal example of how circumstances can and do change, probably beyond our wildest expectations.

Looking back over the last twelve months, I certainly have points where I wish I had made some changes personally that might have smoothed the transition into lockdown, back to the office and beyond. Everything has changed, although in a strange way nothing has changed, with the tax year running as normal and financial planning as busy as ever.

The economic news over the period has not been overly positive, with job losses rising, some political turmoil, and global markets currently maintaining their positions following falls. US markets have returned largely to their pre-pandemic levels, whilst UK markets as an example remain subdued. With the US election now finally concluded as far as we can see and Joe Biden now President-Elect, the US equity markets had a buoyant week whilst the count was ongoing. It remains to be seen if this will continue.

In other areas, such as UK residential property, asking prices have risen significantly, in part due to the change in Stamp Duty costs.

We know that with the planned UK Budget in abeyance for a while, tax relief and allowances have remained unchanged. This means that you can still:

  • claim higher rate pension tax relief if you are a higher rate taxpayer (subject to the rules)
  • earn £12,500 gross in this tax year and pay no income tax
  • contribute £20,000 into an ISA in this tax year
  • use your capital gains tax allowance if available and prudent to a level of £12,300 gross
  • pay up to £9,000 into a Junior ISA for those savers under the age of 18

These are only examples of what can still be achieved in this tax year, although it is all too easy to forget these opportunities against the noise of other events.

Whatever you do, have no regrets about your financial planning this tax year. With a good few months of the tax year ahead of us, these options remain in your control.

Speak to the team at Chapters Financial for your financial planning this tax year.

No individual advice is provided during the course of this blog.

Keith Churchouse FPFS

Director

Chartered Financial Planner

Chapters Financial Limited