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Jan 112017
 

Getting married

Getting married or entering into a civil partnership is a very exciting time, but it’s also a time to start thinking about your finances and how things will change once you are married.

Whatever your situation was as a single person, when you get married you take on new responsibilities and so it’s a good idea to make sure both of you have a strong focus on your personal finances.

There are often big decisions to be made such as choosing a mortgage and deciding who’ll pay the bills (if you’re not already living together).  There are simple things that need to be done too, like changing your name on bank accounts and life assurance policies.  With the help of an independent financial adviser (IFA), you can make a structured plan that will help you cope with your finances as a couple.

We can give you expert guidance on a whole range of issues, from securing your assets outside the marriage, to helping with pension planning, or finding ways to spread to cost of your wedding.  In every situation, getting a little professional advice before you walk down the aisle is a good idea.

Questions you might like to ask us…

  • What’s the best way to organise our savings for tax-efficiency?
  • What are the implications of having our house in joint names?
  • Can we set up life assurance policies on each other?
  • How could we benefit from making pension plans together?

Wealth Preservation

 

Protection from ATTACK!

WASP

 

How to preserve your wealth for future generations….

Everyone should have a Will, but 2 out of 3 people have not yet made a Will, and those that have, may not have the correct Will in place.

A few simple strategies from MOA Estate Planning Ltd could ensure the full protection of your property and investments. MOA Estate Planning Limited specialise in asset protection, using simple but effective strategies ensuring the financial security of your home, property, savings and investments.

We can arrange to visit you in the comfort of your own home to assess your current situation, answer your questions and provide peace of mind for the future. We work in association with Countrywide Tax & Trust Corporation Ltd, who are full members of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP).

Have you seen the cartoon on our new website? www.moaestateplanning.co.uk

Are you sure that your family will benefit totally from the inheritance you have planned?

What would happen if they were to separate or divorce?
Half of what you intend them to receive could disappear in any settlement made.

What if they inherited from you at a time in their lives when they were having financial difficulties?
Their inheritance could be lost to creditors.

Protecting your children’s inheritance
Effective ‘Bloodline Planning’ from us will ensure that your children and grandchildren are able to benefit completely from the inheritance you want them to receive.

The strategic use of trusts will remove the risks for the benefit of your loved ones after you are gone. There are a number of ways in which your home and savings are vulnerable to attack.

• Long Term Care
• Creditors & Bankruptcy
• Taxation
• Divorce or Separation

We will safeguard these hard earned assets for you and your family.

* Source: Counsel and Care

An estimated 60,000* people per year have to sell their homes to pay for Care

You can avoid having to do the same should you have to consider Long Term Care in the future.

Act now to protect the inheritance you wish to pass on to your loved ones.

How do I protect my home and assets from care costs?

Unfortunately, the costs involved in moving into a Care Home can literally wipe out your entire savings and your home may have to be sold to pay for care fees. This could mean that your loved ones could receive very little, or even nothing at all of what you originally intended them to have.

When someone enters care they are automatically “means tested” and ALL of your assets, including your home are taken into account. Only those who have very few assets will escape the costs of care.

Further planning in difficult times….

The loss of a loved one can be a very difficult and stressful time, but even at this late stage, it’s not too late to plan step by step. In association with Countrywide Tax & Trust Corporation Ltd, our qualified team offer more than just help dealing with obtaining the Grant of Probate. We can offer independent advice on the will itself and may even recommend that the Will be varied (Deed of Variation) to ensure that the assets being passed through the will to the Beneficiaries are protected from Care, further Inheritance Tax, Divorce, Creditors and Bankruptcy.

• A friendly and sympathetic team of staff will keep you informed at all stages of the process.

• Professional Advice – in association with Countrywide Tax & Trust Corporation Ltd, whose Directors are full members of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP).

• Initial meeting is free of charge and arranged in the comfort
of your own home.

• Fixed Fee – Unlike most Solicitors and Legal Firms, we do not charge by the hour but offer a competitive fixed fee based on the value of the estate and which is disclosed prior to any work being undertaken.

MOA Wills & Trusts Estate Planning Team

The company’s guiding principles are to be ethical, knowledgeable and professional in all dealings with its customers. The company, in association with Countrywide Tax & Trust Corporation Ltd, and its staff, are bound by and comply with the Codes of Conduct of the various professional and regulatory bodies they are members of.

Mike Oliver MD
Dulcie Brookfield, Director
We can arrange:

• Wills Trusts Lasting Powers of Attorney
• Professional Trustees Professional Executors
• Probate Service Deeds of Variation Funeral Plans
• Conveyancing Deeds of Severance Trust of Land
• Business Succession Cross Option Agreements
• Tax Advice Estate Planning Reports
• Prenuptial Agreements

dead wasp

 

MOA Estate Planning Ltd
Preserving your wealth for future generations

On your side with Buy to Let

 

First time Buy to Let help

Buying property to let as a long-term investment or to generate a regular income has become an increasingly popular option over recent years, and the demand from would-be tenants for quality rental property continues to grow in many areas of the country.

If you’re planning to develop a substantial portfolio as a professional landlord – or you’re just thinking of a fairly modest investment for the future – you’re almost certainly going to need finance in the form of a Buy to Let mortgage. At Mike Oliver Associates, we’re a leader in arranging Buy to Let mortgages, specialising in finance for the residential letting industry.

We’re ready to help you achieve your goals.

Helping you get it right

As Independent Financial Advisers, we’d like to help you establish and run your Buy to Let business successfully and fairly for all concerned. That means careful planning of finances, taxation, and insurance.  It’s also important that you comply with all of the legal requirements of being a landlord. Ask for our mortgage pack which answers many of the most common questions that arise when would-be landlords first consider investing in Buy to Let – it should work as a sound introduction to the business. However, you’re likely to have specific questions relating to your property, locality and circumstances, and we would be delighted to assist you.

Purchase costs

Deposit

If you are funding your puchase with a mortgage you will need to find a deposit from elsewhere. A typical Buy to Let mortgage is currently available at a maximum of 75% loan-to-value, so it’s likely you will need to fund a quarter of the property value.

 Our arrangement fee

For mortgages we can be paid by commission, or a fee of usually £600, or a combination of both.  This is charge is usually split, so it’s easier to pay; we charge a non refundable fee of £300 upon application and once we receive a suitable offer from a mortgage company a further £300 for the mortgage administration of your case. We appreciate your custom so we’ll reduce your mortgage fees by 50% if you come back to us with repeat mortgage business.

The Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate some aspects of Buy to Let mortgages.

Other costs  

Preparing your property for rent – depending on the condition of the property you intend to Buy to Let, you may have to do structural or decorative work.

You’ll also have to budget for furniture and appliances if you intend to let your property furnished.

Other costs will include legal fees, stamp duty land tax (if appropriate) and a survey fee.

Mortgage costs

Mortgage interest payments are likely to be your largest ongoing cost, and most lenders will want to ensure that the rental you earn from letting your property easily covers your mortgage commitment.  Rental income should be at least 125% of the mortgage interest at initial product, this provides a safeguard against periods when your property isn’t let, and should help you meet the costs of running your property.

Your home or property may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage and any other debts secured on it.

Running costs

Property maintenance –such as repairs and maintaining the safety of gas and electrical appliances.

Insurance – specialist buildings and contents insurance for landlords is essential. In addition, some insurers will also provide rent guarantee insurance.

Service charges and ground rents – for leasehold properties

Your tenant will normally be responsible for other property related costs such as council tax, a TV licence and utilities. The tenancy agreement should clearly set out who is responsible for each of these payments.

Letting Agent services and charges

If you’re new to the Buy to Let market, have several properties, live some distance from your property or you have other demands on your time, it could make sense to use a reputable letting agent. Naturally the fees or commission you pay to an agent will eat into your profit, but it may save you a great deal of trouble. An agent can be a great source of advice, and it’s worthwhile speaking to local agents who know your area before you buy. A good letting agent will market your property, select tenants, take up references and credit checks, compile inventories and tenancy agreements, collect rent and deposits, and generally inspect and manage the property.

Typical letting agent charges are around 10–15% of the monthly rental. In addition there can be a one-off set up fee. These charges vary from agent to agent, so it may be worth shopping around.

Cost and Income

Your income

Your main source of Buy to Let income will be rent. It is vitally important that you get a true sense of likely rental levels by speaking to local estate agents and generally researching the local rental market. You’ll also be interested in the potential resale value of your Buy to Let property. Therefore the local market, employment opportunities, transport links, schools and other amenities will be important considerations.

Your obligations to the tax man

Tax is payable on the profits you make from letting your Buy to Let property. It’s normally calculated on the gross annual rental income, less any allowable expenses incurred as a result of renting out the property, as well any other allowances that you’re entitled to. If you lose money in any one year, you should be able to carry the loss forward and set it against profit you make in subsequent years.

As a landlord, you’ll have to submit your rental income on your tax return, so it’s vital you keep detailed records of the rental payments you receive as well as all the expenses you incur. It’s standard practice for a landlord to employ an accountant to ensure HM Revenue & Customs are properly advised – and to make sure that all allowable expenses are identified so you can offset them against your profit. Although using an accountant will cost money, the fees you pay for the service will be tax deductible, and the help you’ll receive could easily save you money in the long run.

Expenses which can normally be deducted from your income to calculate your profit include: utility bills, insurance, mortgage interest, maintenance and repair (but not improvements), professional fees, cost of services like cleaners and tradesmen and other expenses such as advertising for tenants.

Sale proceeds and tax

If and when you decide to sell your Buy to Let property, the proceeds from the sale will be subject to capital gains tax. Calculating this tax liability can be quite complicated and it’s almost certainly worth paying for the expert advice of a qualified accountant.

Further information on taxation and allowances can be found by visiting the HM Revenue & Customs website at www.hmrc.gov.uk.

Tenancy agreements

A tenancy agreement is a contract between landlord and tenant. It is most likely to be an Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreement (AST) regulated by the Housing Act 1988 as amended, and provides limited security of tenure to the tenant. Although the content varies, your tenancy agreement should cover:

• details of the parties involved

• The date that the tenancy began

• The duration of the tenancy

•  details of the initial deposit that the tenant should pay  and how it is to be protected

•  details of the monthly rent, when it is due and how it  is to be paid

•  The length of notice that the tenant and landlord need  to give to end the tenancy

• details of the tenant’s obligations while renting the property

•  a provision confirming that the tenant is not liable  for fair wear and tear to the property

 The tenancy agreement should be signed by the tenant and the letting agent, or the landlord if no agent is involved. It can subsequently be changed if both parties agree. Unless you have considerable experience already, it’s a good idea to seek advice from a letting agent or legal adviser on the terms of the proposed tenancy agreement. Initial deposits
An initial deposit should cover you against missing items, or any damage caused by the tenant.

Landlord Obligations

Deposit protection schemes

Tenancy Deposit Protection (TDP) schemes guarantee that tenants will  get their deposit back at the end of the tenancy. (However, the tenant is  still obliged to meet the terms of the tenancy agreement and must not damage the property.)

Landlords are legally required to protect deposits on tenancies which began after 6 April 2007, it’s good practice for landlords to protect deposits in all circumstances. If you don’t protect you tenant’s deposit you could be taken to court. You could be required to repay the deposit plus a sum equivalent to three times the amount, and you may not be able to seek possession of your property. Tenancy Deposit Protection schemes do not cover holding deposits

Types of scheme

There are two types of Tenancy Deposit Protection schemes and you  should seek professional advice – for example from an agent or solicitor –  on what’s the best for you:
•  Custodial – the Deposit Protection Service provides the only custodial  scheme. It holds the deposit in a bank account and returns it at the end  of the tenancy to the person who is entitled to it. This scheme is free to landlords and letting agents.
•  Insurance based – where you or your agent holds the tenant’s deposit  and pays a fee to insure it against default. My Deposits and Tenancy  Deposit Scheme are insurance based providers.

Landlord insurance

Standard home insurance doesn’t normally pay out when a property is let, so it’s important that you arrange a specialist policy. As well as insuring the building and any contents that belong to you, landlord insurance often provides legal cover which could help in disputes. Many policies also include other valuable cover like:

•  Rent guarantee cover – helps protect you against a tenant failing to pay  rent, or if something unexpected happens to make letting impossible.

•  Landlord liability cover – this can protect you against large compensation claims arising from an injury caused by a defect in your property.

Your tenants will be responsible for insuring their own personal possessions.

Landlord repair and maintenance obligations

The Landlord and Tenant Act 1985 covers the three main areas of  your responsibility as a landlord under an assured shorthold tenancy.

Repair

You must keep the structure and exterior of the property in a good  state of repair. You have final responsibility for ensuring your property  is safe and fit for use, and you must ensure that all necessary repairs  are carried out properly.

Gas and electrical safety

As a landlord, you’re responsible for the safety of gas installations and appliances. You must arrange an annual safety check and keep proper records. There are also regulations covering the safety of electrical installations and appliances. Though not currently compulsory in all properties, it makes extremely good sense to fit carbon monoxide and smoke detectors in all let properties.  As a landlord, you must also keep up to date with changes in relevant legislation – it’s your responsibility to find out when your obligations change.

Fire safety of furnishings

You must ensure that any soft furnishings and fittings you provide comply with the relevant standards for fire safety, and it’s a good idea to seek independent advice on your legal responsibilities in this area.

Ending a tenancy

At the end of an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST) you have an automatic right as a landlord to possession of your property as long as you’ve given  the tenant two months’ notice to vacate the property.

If the notice period expires and the tenant has still not left the property,  you will need to start the process of eviction through the courts. You can’t forcibly remove a tenant without an eviction order.

If you wish to seek possession under an Assured Shorthold Tenancy because your tenant has not paid the rent, or if they’ve broken other terms of the agreement, you’ll need to use one of the reasons or ‘grounds’ for possession specified in the Housing Act 1988. You will have to seek independent legal advice on bringing an AST to an end.

There are certain criteria that are  applied to all applications for Buy to Let borrowing, as Financial Advisers we are happy to explain any points  relating to your own circumstances.

How to reduce your Inheritance Tax bill

 

How to reduce your Inheritance Tax bill

Mike Oliver Associates Estate PlanningBy Chloe Hayward Business reporter, BBC News

“We all want to see a system where it is only the very rich that pay inheritance tax, and not hard working people.” Those were the words of David Cameron during Prime Minister’s Questions. But despite these intentions an increasingly large number of people will leave their loved ones with a hefty tax bill when they die. The current inheritance tax (IHT) threshold is £325,000 per person. It doubles to £650,000 for a married couple – as long as the first person to die leaves their entire estate to their partner. Anything over this limit is subject to a 40% tax bill. So what sort of people are now having to pay IHT, and if that is likely to include you, how can you legitimately reduce your bill?

‘Unfair’

Property price increases are dragging many middle class working families into the tax bracket.

When do you pay IHT?

• First £325,000 is tax free
• First £650,000 for married couples is tax free
• Thereafter assets taxed at 40%

The average price of property in London is now £514,000, while it has reached £338,000 in the South East. That means many single or divorced people who own their house, will owe tax on their estate when they die. The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) calculates that 4.8% of the population currently pays IHT. By 2018-19, it estimates that figure will have more than doubled, to 10%. Bob Dyson has found himself being dragged into the net. In 1987 he bought a house in north London for £115,000. It is now valued at £800,000. He is furious to find out that his daughter might have to pay a six figure sum in tax, should he die in the next few years. “I have been paying income tax on the nose for the last 50 years, and now I find out that I could have to pay tax again on the house. It’s already taxed money. I think it’s a tax on being prudent,” he says.”It’s unfair and the threshold should be raised.”

Reducing tax

But there are options for people who find themselves in Bob’s position. “If you plan ahead you can totally legally reduce your inheritance tax bill,” explains Claire Walsh, a chartered financial planner from Aspect 8 in Brighton.

How to reduce your IHT bill

• Gifts of up to £3000 a year are tax free
• Gifts out of income are tax free
• Get married – your allowance doubles
• Put your assets in a pension. Usually inheritors pay less tax
• Give to charity. Your tax bill will be reduced
• Hand over your house – but you will need to live for seven years, and pay rent

Clearly the best way to avoid paying any tax is to reduce your estate value to below the £325,000 threshold. “Start enjoying your retirement is always the first piece of advice I give,” says Claire Walsh. “I also often find myself telling people to get married as well. Married couples have their threshold doubled to £650,000,” she says. Changes to pension legislation could also offer a way around IHT.As of April 2015 pension pots will no longer be subject to a 55% tax when passed on to loved ones after the saver dies. This means that any funds in a pension pot can be passed onto a named individual without any tax implications if they die before the age of 75. “I would advise clients to consider transferring all their non-pension assets to fund their pension,” says Scott Gallacher, chartered financial planner at Rowley Turton in Leicester. “By shifting your savings into a drawdown scheme they will no longer be included in your final estate valuation, and therefore will avoid inheritance tax,” he advises.

Gifts

You can give up to £3,000 a year in gifts tax-free

Giving gifts is another way to reduce your final estate value. Each year you can give away £3,000 with these gifts falling outside your estate immediately. You can also gift larger sums of money but these will stay within your estate valuation for seven years, another reason why it is good to plan ahead. Assuming you live for seven years, then these gifts fall outside your estate and avoid IHT. A way to safeguard these gifts before the seven year deadline is for the beneficiaries to take out life insurance against an inheritance tax bill. This is especially popular for single parents who do not want children to have to sell the family home to pay a tax bill. In addition, if you have an income – a pension, earnings, or dividend payouts – and you give money regularly, then it is also exempt. And remember gifts to political parties and charities are also free of IHT.

‘Squeezed middle’

Despite all the options available, unless your give your house away, it is hard to avoid inheritance tax on what is probably your most valuable asset. Many argue that the threshold should at least rise each year in line with inflation, but now the rate has been fixed since 2009. The Conservative election manifesto outlined plans to raise the threshold to £1m, citing house price rises. But their Liberal Democrat coalition partners blocked this move.  “The key people who are caught up in inheritance tax are the squeezed middle. These are the people with the bulk of their wealth tied up in the family home,” says Scott Gallacher.

The levels, bases and reliefs from taxation are subject to individual circumstances and may be subject to future change.

The Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate taxation & trust advice, will writing.

Speak in confidence to us on 0845 4021757, or take a look at our Estate Planning Website.

 

 

 

 

First Time Buyer Help

 

Need help with your first purchase?

…….then you’ve come to the right place.

Principal: Mike Oliver, Dip PFS Cert CII(MP & EP) has 25 years industry experience as an Adviser, Area Manager, Financial Services Director and Business Owner.

An initial Consultation is totally free of charge and by using our financial adviser services we can offer a huge choice of mortgages (more than 5,000 schemes at a recent count) to suit your precise needs and we can help you quickly.  We will find you the right scheme, liaise with the lender, surveyor, estate agent and solicitor and we will update you at every stage.

Our Purchasing Your First Property Booklet (PDF)  aims to guide you through the process of buying your first home covering the following steps:

  1. Decide what type of property you’re looking for and how much you can borrow
  2. Additional costs
  3. Register with estate agents and visit properties you like
  4. Make an offer
  5. Offer accepted
  6. The best type of mortgage for you
  7. Instruct your solicitor
  8. Survey and Survey results
  9. Exchange contracts
  10. Organise your insurance policies
  11. Completion

For mortgages we charge a fee of at least £600. We will also be paid a procuration fee from the mortgage provider if one is available.

Your home or property may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage and any other debt secured on it.

What is an IFA?

 

What is an Independent Financial Adviser?

Mike Oliver Associates used to be part of the Sesame Network until the network decided to change their business model from independent to restricted (what does that mean? See below).  We felt strongly that in the best interests of our clients, we must maintain our independence, so we became a firm directly authorized and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority in 2015.

Broadly speaking Advisers are divided into one of two types.

  • Independent Financial Advisers.  IFAs are unbiased and can advise on and arrange products from any provider right across the market. They are required by the Financial Conduct Authority to give ‘best advice’. This means that an IFA is morally and legally obliged to act as the Agent of the Client rather than that of any product or service provider.
  • Restricted advisers.  These are the type of advisers you’ll often find in high street banks, or those who have chosen to specialise in certain providers’ products or certain areas of advice.  Their ‘restricted’ status means that they can only sell and advise on  a limited range of products, or from a limited number of firms.
So, if you’re looking for an adviser, try to ensure it is an
Independent Financial Adviser (IFA) if you’re looking for an unbiased recommendation.

 

If you’re going to get professional advice, check it’s from an Independent Financial Adviser. This is best if you’re starting out with financial advice, as it is important to identify why restricted advisers are restricted – some will be by product, and some will be by provider.

This terminology is a legal distinction, so ask them, “Are you an Independent Financial Adviser?” Don’t accept any hedged answers. Key Facts about our services and Guide to Our Services documents are designed to inform you as to which category an adviser belongs. Please ensure you are given a copy of such documents prior to any decisions being made.

Welcome To:

 

home commercial mortgages pensions protection savings & investments wills & estate planning about us contact us Equity Release Long Term Care & Asset Protection

Contact Us

 
We’re on the high street, drop in and see us….

MIKE OLIVER ASSOCIATES
55 Perrymount Road,
Haywards Heath,
West Sussex, RH16 3BN

Call: 0845 4021757 or o1444 449222
Email: advice@moaifa.co.uk

“We grow our business by referrals, 
don’t keep us a secret!”

 

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and the Data Protection Act 1998.
Information supplied to us on the electronic form
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What You Need To Know

 

what-you-need-to-know

 

The Financial Conduct Authority FCA 11 Principles of Business fashion the code of conduct for our industry.   If we advise you on your assets then we assume a joint responsibility with you to safeguard them in any eventuality. Under Principle 10, as Financial Advisers, we are morally and legally obliged to protect the assets of our clients.

As Financial Advisers we maintain the highest standards of ethics.  To that end we have devoted our time and efforts to producing a charging structure that is fair across all our business areas. We are pleased to support FCA Principle 6, ‘Treating Customers Fairly’.

 

 

 

Your Appointment

 

Tell us about your plans and dreams and we’ll work withchrysalis you to try and turn them into reality

 

What to bring with you

We have created this checklist to give you an idea of what information we will need to help you with your financial planning, and by supplying us with this information at our first meeting, we can start working on your case quickly.

  • List of goals for the financial planning exercise
  • List of specific questions that you want answered

ID/Residence

Proof of name – Current Passport or Drivers Licence

Proof of address – Utility Bill/Bank Statement – dated within the last 2 months showing name and current address

Possible Documentation Requirements:

  • Current Will and Trust documents
  • Buildings and Contents – policy and schedule
  • Life & Critical Illness – policy and schedule
  • Pension policy information
  • Investment information

Information required for Mortgages:

If Employed

Latest 3 months payslips

Latest P60

Latest 3 months bank statements showing salary being credited. Statements must include the bank’s name together with the applicant’s account number and name.

 If Self-Employed

3 years company accounts/self assessment tax returns

3 years HMRC SA302’s with Corresponding tax year overviews – these can be obtained from HMRC, they can be used as proof of earnings and tax paid

If you receive a PAYE salary from your own company then we would require 3 months payslips and latest P60 as well as above

Latest 3 months bank statements. Statements must include the bank’s name together with the applicant’s account number and name.

Additional Documentation

For purchases if not using equity from existing property we will need evidence of deposit funds

Latest Annual Mortgage Statements

For Court Ordered Maintenance payments – a copy of the court order

For Child/Working Tax Credits/Child benefit – Annual letters from HMRC confirming your payments for the following year and corresponding bank statements for the past 3 months showing the payments received

Latest Credit Report

Please sign and return the IDD explaining our costs and services we provide along with the data protection statement attached

 

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