Guide your leavers through retirement

Retirement can be a fantastic opportunity where employees can put themselves and their family first, but any goals and aspirations are influenced heavily on a well thought-out plan.  Close Brothers run a programme of UK-wide one day seminars to help support people as they approach retirement.

Events are popular with employees from a wide range of sectors and are designed to help people better understand some of the important decisions they are likely to face, as well as exploring the exciting opportunities that retirement may bring.

Led by qualified training professionals, our events provide information on a wide range of financial and lifestyle subjects, leaving people feeling positive and empowered about the next stage of their life. We adopt an informal and interactive approach, helping to break down any barriers, dispel negativity and providing invaluable hints and tips on making the most of retirement.

Attendance is free of charge

Attendance is free of charge for up to five people per year, per organisation.  Lunch, refreshments and all event materials are provided.

Book an event...

EventDateDurationVenueLocationAvailabilityAction
Retirement seminar 22/05/2019 1 day(s) Close Brothers London 5
Retirement seminar 29/05/2019 1 day(s) Kempton Park Race Course Sunbury-on-Thames 3
Retirement seminar 05/06/2019 1 day(s) Radisson Blu Hotel Birmingham 1
Retirement seminar 13/06/2019 1 day(s) The Trinity Conference Centre Cambridge 13
Retirement seminar 19/06/2019 1 day(s) Close Brothers London 11
Retirement seminar 19/06/2019 1 day(s) Jesmond Dene House Newcastle 17
Retirement seminar 03/07/2019 1 day(s) Jury's Inn Swindon Swindon 10
Retirement seminar 10/07/2019 1 day(s) Close Brothers London 9
Retirement seminar 17/07/2019 1 day(s) Holiday Inn Marina Hull 18
Retirement seminar 09/07/2019 1 day(s) Copthorne Hotel Slough 20
Retirement seminar 10/09/2019 1 day(s) To be advised - Cambridge Cambridge 20
Retirement seminar 18/09/2019 1 day(s) To be advised - Aberdeen Aberdeen 11
Retirement seminar 18/09/2019 1 day(s) To be advised - Warrington Warrington 17
Retirement seminar 25/09/2019 1 day(s) To be advised - Shepperton Shepperton 17
Retirement seminar 03/10/2019 1 day(s) Close Brothers - Glasgow Glasgow 16
Retirement seminar 03/12/2019 1 day(s) Close Brothers London 17
Retirement seminar 13/09/2019 1 day(s) Close Brothers London 18
Retirement seminar 19/11/2019 1 day(s) To be advised - Hull Hull 15
Retirement seminar 06/11/2019 1 day(s) Close Brothers London 20
Retirement seminar 05/11/2019 1 day(s) To be advised - Coventry Coventry 19
Retirement seminar 30/10/2019 1 day(s) To be advised - Leicester Leicester 18
Retirement seminar 29/10/2019 1 day(s) To be advised - Birmingham Birmingham 20
Retirement seminar 17/10/2019 1 day(s) To be advised - Cardiff Cardiff fully booked
Retirement seminar 16/10/2019 1 day(s) To be advised - Portsmouth Portsmouth 9
Retirement seminar 09/10/2019 1 day(s) To be advised - Uxbridge Uxbridge 20
Retirement seminar 08/10/2019 1 day(s) To be advised - Belfast Belfast 20

Budgeting

Toni has a take home pay of £1,300 per month

After attending a seminar at work on improving her finances, she wants to do a budgeting exercise and see if she can reduce her costs to create a bit of room for saving into her pension. 

Toni uses the budget modeller on her benefits website to calculate her costs and income. Using a comparison website she manages to reduce her utilities, mobile phone charges and car insurance. Using the company’s gym discount she reduces that cost too and after putting these reduced costs into the budget modeller, she finds she has saved £154 per month, which is the same as a 12% pay rise!

Toni is now comfortable that she can start contributing £75 per month to the pension scheme and still have more money to spend each month from only a few hours working on her budgeting and costs. Also since the pension contribution is taken out of her salary before tax, the actual amount that will go into her pension is £93.75.

Following the recommendation to review her budget given at the seminar, Toni has resolved to carry out this exercise at least every year. 

This case study aims to provide an example of how you can start taking steps to achieve your goals and is not meant as advice.  An individual’s financial plan is developed to suit their unique personal, financial and tax position.  The solution shown may not be suitable to you.  Your financial plan will be individual to you based on your own unique circumstances. 

 

 

Employee benefits - reduce monthly costs

Sara’s employer runs a Childcare Voucher Scheme.  The scheme works by allowing Sara to buy up to £243 of childcare vouchers per month out of her salary before Income Tax or National Insurance have been deducted thus saving £933. Income Tax relief is limited to basic rate only for new parents. If you have child care costs, there is no downside to participating and both parents can claim the vouchers if they are working and paying tax.

However, from 4 October 2018 childcare voucher schemes were closed to new applicants.  Sara may be able to get Tax-Free Childcare instead although if Sara was getting childcare vouchers at that time she would continue to receive them.

Under Tax-Free Childcare the government will pay up to £500 every 3 months for each child to help with the costs of childcare. For further information Sara should look under Tax-Free Childcare on www.gov.uk.  

This case study aims to provide an example of how you can start taking steps to achieve your goals and is not meant as advice.  An individual’s financial plan is developed to suit their unique personal, financial and tax position.  The solution shown may not be suitable to you.  Your financial plan will be individual to you based on your own unique circumstances.

 

Using an Employee Assistance Plan - debt counselling

Naomie has a number of store cards and credit cards which are close to their borrowing limit. Naomie likes the convenience of credit but feels that she is sinking further and further into debt. She is also experiencing problems paying her mortgage and has fallen into arrears with her monthly payments.
 
Recommendation:
 
Naomie's employer provides a debt counselling services as part of its Employee Assistance Plan. The counsellor advises Naomie that first of all she needs to prioritise her various debts. Mortgage repayments are considered to be a priority debt because non-payment or arrears can lead to repossession of her home and potential homelessness. The payment of Naomie's mortgage should therefore take priority over credit and store card payments. Naomie is advised to take no further credit on her store and credit cards as the interest she is paying for these forms of credit is between 20% and 30% per annum. She is advised to speak to her mortgage provider and ask whether she can agree a repayment plan to cover the arrears on her mortgage over a period of time. Most mortgage providers will be accommodating if they are consulted early on and a payment plan is agreed.
 
In addition, the debt counsellor also suggests that Naomie explore two ways to manage the credit and store card debts. The first would be to try to secure a bank loan or “peer to peer” loan to pay off her credit and store card balances. The second would be to transfer the store card and credit card balances to a zero interest card and make sure she budgeted for a regular payment to reduce that debt over time.
 
As part of the process, Naomie used a budget modeller to look carefully at her expenditure and found that by changing her utilities provider and her car insurer, and cutting out some non-essential expenditure she was able to make some significant reductions to her monthly outgoings, which helped with her repayment plans.
 
This case study aims to provide an example of how you can start taking steps to achieve your goals and is not meant as advice.  An individual’s financial plan is developed to suit their unique personal, financial and tax position.  The solution shown may not be suitable to you.  Your financial plan will be individual to you based on your own unique circumstances.
 
 

Preparing for the financial costs of a new baby

There are 4 broad areas of financial planning that anyone in this situation should consider:

1. Check what support your employer offers
 

Contact your HR team to understand the maternity/paternity policies, the impact on pay and reward during leave, benefits and other support available during maternity leave and on return to work such as crèche facilities and childcare vouchers. Some questions to ask may include: 

  • Are there any circumstances when I would need to repay any maternity pay?
  • Can I share leave with my partner?
  • What happens to my pension during maternity leave? Does my employer continue to contribute, do I need to contribute, and can I make up contributions when I return to work?
  • Does my employer provide medical care for me during and after pregnancy? What about my child? What about my partner?
  • Is there an Employee Assistance helpline / Family Care policy to help if there are any difficulties?
  • What tax free childcare schemes are available? 
 
2. Budgeting for change
 
  • Plan ahead for a period of reduced income. Go back to the drawing board on your family budget plans and look at the impact of your planned period of lower income. Until you look at your household budget you may not have the full information to plan your maternity leave and what is realistic and affordable. Are there any steps you can take in the period ahead of planned maternity leave to act as a buffer for any loss of income? 
  • Plan ahead for increased costs. There will inevitably be some increased costs with a new baby and so revisit your budget so you can see what needs to be planned for. ONS data in 2016 showed the average cost for year 1 for a first baby was £9,152 and although this is unlikely to come in nice even monthly chunks, this can be factored in when looking at the first year costs in particular as budgets adjust. Remember that some costs are one-offs such as nursery equipment, a pram and car seats. Other costs will be regular and ongoing such as nappies, clothes, food and toys. There are also some costs that are less obvious but which all need to be considered and factored into your budget such as visits to soft play areas, the zoo, coffees with other parents, parent and baby activity classes and so on. 
  • Think about money saving tips and schemes. There are plenty of websites, apps and support groups giving tips on how to save money when you have children. Using equipment from friends/ family rather than buying it, selling equipment, toys and clothes once you no longer need them, using library toys and books rather than buying these new, second hand sales and charity shops and free days out and activities to do with children etc. But also remember that some things are free when you are pregnant such as dental care and prescriptions. There are also tax free childcare schemes available so check what you can access and for children aged 2 and 3 there are 15/30 free hours available. 
  • Budgeting for the future. Once the household budget has adjusted to a new addition to the family, there are some future costs that will need to be considered alongside day to day living costs. These include: the costs of childcare; education costs; and the cost of changing house/ car if more space is needed. If looking for a new house, see if your employer offers a mortgage service to help find the most suitable mortgage.
 
3. Returning to work
 

The average cost of sending a child under 2 to nursey in the UK is £127.00 per week - part time (25 hours) and £242.00 per week - full time (50 hours) (www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk). So revisit your budget when considering the costs of returning to work (including childcare) versus your income; this calculation is particularly relevant for anyone considering returning to work part-time. Talk to your payroll colleagues to assess any impact on your tax code where you have had a period of no pay. Understand your employer’s position on emergency care leave and parental leave.  

 
4. Protection for the future
 

Although nothing should ever overshadow the joy of having a new baby, it is a good time to review plans for what protection you have in place in the event of being out of work, ill-health or bereavement. Revisit the need for income protection, life assurance and any private medical insurance and ensure you know the death in service benefits. Make sure your nominated beneficiary details are up to date for all your pensions and write or review any existing wills. Once there are dependants, this is a good time to update an existing will, to specify how the child will be cared for financially and who will be their guardian. Review the sections on estate planning and wills for more information. And don’t forget your pension planning. For periods of no pay, revisit your pensions, use a pension modeller and get your pensions back on track.

 

This case study aims to provide an example of how you can start taking steps to achieve your goals and is not meant as advice.  An individual’s financial plan is developed to suit their unique personal, financial and tax position.  The solution shown may not be suitable to you.  Your financial plan will be individual to you based on your own unique circumstances.

 

Inheritance Tax tenancy types

Richard and Jill have recently married. They have both been married before and have adult children from their previous marriages. They buy a house together. They both have wills in which their own adult children are the only beneficiaries. 

Recommendation:

Richard and Jill should give very careful consideration as to how they own their new home. The customary way most couples own assets or property is as Joint Tenants. If you own something as a Joint Tenant and you die your share of the asset or property automatically passes to the other Joint Tenant(s). This is why on death a jointly held bank account reverts to the surviving Joint Tenant (very often the surviving spouse) without any interaction with the deceased’s will. You cannot pass on assets or property through your will if they are held as Joint Tenants: they pass to the surviving Joint Tenant(s) under the Law of Survivorship. As they are Joint Tenants their own children from their first marriages will not inherit this asset on first death and unless the will of the survivor is amended the children of the survivor will inherit the property when the survivor dies.

Therefore if your family home is held as Joint Tenants it passes to the other Joint Tenant automatically whatever your will may say. This can be very convenient as probate is not required, but it can also be problematic if your individual circumstances are complicated as in Richard and Jill’s case. As they have both been married before and have children from their first marriages Richard and Jill wish to ensure that on their death their share in the family home passes to their own children. Therefore they will need to own their new home as Tenants in Common where each party owns outright a share of the property and can give it to whoever they wish under the terms of their will.

However, in order to protect the interests of the survivor during their lifetime this is usually done through a trust so that the survivor can remain in the house during their lifetime with the deceased’s share of the property only passing to their children on the death of the survivor.

 

This case study aims to provide an example of how you can start taking steps to achieve your goals and is not meant as advice.  An individual’s financial plan is developed to suit their unique personal, financial and tax position.  The solution shown may not be suitable to you.  Your financial plan will be individual to you based on your own unique circumstances.

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