In 30 years, will you be living out your financial dreams? | AAG Wealth Management

In 30 years, will you be living out your financial dreams?

Posted: October 9, 2020


In 30 years, will you be living out your financial dreams?

If you wrote a letter to ‘future you’, would you congratulate yourself on achieving everything you ever wanted?

We’ve all thought about what we might do next – how we should reprioritise goals or mix things up, with a view to living our best lives.

But how many of us ever really take the big dreams seriously? You know: the hazy, indistinct ones that float tantalisingly in the distant future, seemingly always out of reach. The ones you’re convinced you’ll never be able to afford.

Perhaps you’ve fantasised, for example, about giving up the rat race and starting your own small business – turning a part-time hobby into a full-blown pursuit, as a way to achieve financial independence.

Or maybe, like many others, you just want to be freed entirely from the constraints of a working life and have the flexibility to travel the world – lingering for a while in a place you once saw briefly on a long weekend break.

Picture the “future you”
Now, imagine penning a letter to your future self. What would it say?

Would it congratulate ‘future you’ on achieving everything you ever wanted – or explain why none of it was possible? And what would 55-year-old you say in return?

In the UK, 55 is the earliest you’re allowed to take money out of your pension. And while that might not be the best course of action for you, based on your own financial circumstances, it does give you an age to aim for – and build your life plan around.

Do you really want to wait until your late 60s, when the State Pension age comes into effect or you’ve finally saved enough into a workplace scheme, to enjoy that ‘next big thing’?

The fact is, your dreams can come true, at an age where you’re still young enough to enjoy them, if you start to plan early on. You don’t have to wait for that unlikely windfall.

Start putting what you can into a pension
First, there’s good basic planning. This involves looking ahead and considering the course that your life might take – and any physical, emotional and social challenges you’re likely to encounter along the way.

For women, in every phase of their lives, there can be many such challenges – all of which can impact the ability to save effectively.

As a result, women should contribute money into a pension as soon as they’re able to, even if it’s only a small amount each month, to ensure their money is working as hard as they are.

The more you’re able to put into your pension throughout your working life, the closer you’ll be to realising your dreams and keeping your plan on track.

Consider how long you’ll live, and take advice
Unfortunately, the obstacles women face in becoming financially independent extend beyond their working lives, and any planning needs to account for the probability that they may well live longer than their male counterparts – and possibly alone.

They need to make sure their savings will be sufficient to give them a comfortable retirement that could conceivably last for 30 years or more.

Understandably, this could seem quite daunting. But a financial adviser can help you to build your financial life plan and plot out how you’re going to achieve your dreams.

Please don’t panic!
And don’t worry if you’re already a bit older and don’t have the advantage of starting early – or you feel you can’t afford to save the ‘right amount’ of money each month. There are still actions you can take.

A financial adviser will be able to review all your assets and savings – be it cash in savings accounts, property, any ISAs you might have, your pensions or things like premium bonds – and consider how all of these could ‘work smarter’ for you.

They’ll also be able to help you review any old workplace or personal pensions you may have.

Giving up work isn’t always just about retirement and taking life easy. It’s also about fulfilling your dreams and doing big things – even if, right now, they seem out of reach.

So, write yourself that letter. Think about what you want to do, when you want to do it, and how you’re going to afford it. Then consider sharing the letter with your St. James’s Place financial adviser, who can help you turn it into plan to follow throughout your life.

The value of an investment with St. James’s Place will be directly linked to the performance of the funds selected and the value may fall as well as rise. You may get back less than the amount invested.

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