Retirement and long term care

Making the most of your retirement

What I need to know about retirement?

If you are planning to retire in the near future, you are likely to have built up a pension fund from one or more employer pension schemes or private pension plans, which you will use to provide an income in retirement. It is often assumed that the move from saving for retirement to accessing your pension benefits happens automatically, however there are a number of important decisions that need to be made to convert your pension fund into pension income and to ensure that you benefit from the highest level of income available.

What choices do I have at retirement?


pension reform

You will be faced with new phrases and terms that are perhaps unfamiliar, such as Annuity, Pension Commencement Lump Sum, Escalation, Pension Drawdown, Guarantees, etc. There are many different options that will impact on the income you receive and it is therefore important that the right selection is made to meet your needs as once the choices are made and your income commences, often these cannot be ‘undone’.

If you want to receive the most money from your pension, please consider the following:

  • That not all annuity (income) providers are equal.
  • It is important to remember you have the right to ‘shop around’ in the open market to ensure that the you achieve the maximum income from your pension pot as you are not obliged to buy an annuity from your existing pension company.
  • Choosing an annuity can be a once in a lifetime decision so it is important to make the right choice there can be up as much as 45% difference between the best and worst rates offered by annuity providers. [2]
  • In addition, depending on postcode, health and lifestyle information provided, it may be possible to enhance the income further if you qualify for an ‘enhanced’ or ‘impaired life’ annuity.

How can we help?

Wren Sterling has a dedicated at retirement service, to help guide you through the maze of options and ensure that the choices you make are right for you. We can provide you with advice; face to face, over the telephone or the necessary guidance and information to make the right decision at retirement.

Our personalised report is designed help you understand your retirement options, and will bring clarity to your choices so you can make the most of your pension and enjoy a higher level of income than you may be offered by your pension provider.

Talk to Wren Sterling about your retirement options and have the confidence that you have made the right decisions.

[1] Source: Department for Work and Pensions. Number of Future Centenarians by Age Group – April 2011

[2] Source: The Open Market Annuity Service November 2012. Based on a male aged 65 with a £22,500 fund, 10 year guaranteed period, 5% escalation, no value protection, based on a banded postcode, compared to the best and worst conventional annuity rates.

Inheritance Tax Planning

Throughout your life you’ve probably worked hard to build up the things you have around you. But have you stopped to think about how much everything you own (your estate) is worth? Your home, your car, your savings and all your possessions – they all add up.

If your estate (your assets minus any liabilities) currently totals more than £325,000 inheritance tax will affect you.

What happens if I do not carry out inheritance tax planning?

If your estate (your assets minus any liabilities) currently totals more than £325,000, you are liable to pay 40% tax of on the value on anything over that. So some of what you believe you’re leaving to those you care about may have to be paid as tax instead.

Until your beneficiaries have paid the tax bill, they won’t receive any of your estate as it becomes frozen until the debt is settled. Not a pleasant thought is it? This is probably not the sort of legacy you intended to leave behind.

What we offer?

Fortunately there are ways to reduce a potential inheritance tax liability, all revolving around sensible financial planning and that’s where our advice can benefit you.

Long-term Care

Realising the need for long -term care is not something we all want to face, however it’s essential to get the right care advice straight away for you or your loved ones when you realise you require it.

What happens if I do not get the right care advice straight away?

If you  don’t get the right care advice when you realise you need care, you or your loved ones could use what resources you have to fund the care, putting your home and other savings and possessions at risk. If funds run out it could mean moving to a cheaper home and there may not be enough left in the pot to buy an Immediate Needs Annuity to cover the rest of the care fees.

What we offer?

Getting specialized advice from a suitably qualified adviser is critical as the financial and legal framework for the funding of care is very complex. Our advisers who are accredited by the Society of Later Life Advisers are experts in this field and have to follow stringent guidelines to maintain our accreditation. Our advisers will evaluate your current financial situation, and this involves a review of your:

  • Assets
  • Legal position, including any wills.
  • Clients objectives
  • Calculation of the potential shortfall
  • Existing state benefits and allowances that may be available
  • Funding rules and how they affect the you, including:
    • The means test
    • when it applies and when it doesn’t.
    • NHS Fully Funded Continuing Care and how that is assessed.
    • Nursing Care
    • Residential Care
    • Care at Home

Our Advisers

Wren Sterling has two fully accredited SOLLA advisers who work with a network of other long term care qualified advisers. They can provide fixed fee reports on the options that clients and their families have. In order to advise in this area, the minimum qualification is a Certificate in Long Term Care. Wren Sterling has a number of advisers who meet this requirement across the country.

Capital Investment

Half of our business is financial planning and advice, the other half is putting your plan in to action. Whether you are investing small regular amounts in an ISA or looking for us to help you make the most of a large existing pension fund or broader portfolio we an help you invest wisely.

Why use our service?

We always fulfil our responsibility to help make the most of your money by being:

  • Personable to your needs – defining your own personal investment strategy
  • Keeping costs low – using our buying power to negotiate low charges
  • Keeping you informed – providing you with timely regular full and accessible information about your investments and the market

What we offer?

We look at diversifying your investments for the maximum return:

  • By investing your money in funds, each of which typically invests in turn in dozens of different assets, rather than in the individual assets themselves.
  • By spreading your money across a range of funds which invest in different kinds of assets, for example some which invest in shares, some in bonds, some in property and so forth.
  • To all of our investment clients, establishing an appropriate, successful and cost effective investment solution is of vital importance.