If you haven’t been very involved with managing your family’s finances in the past and suddenly find that you’re now responsible, then it’s easy to feel overwhelmed.
That’s just what Laura told me had happened when we first spoke, following the recent death of her husband, Martin.
Laura was confused by the amount of paperwork she was receiving from different organisations. Her money was spread across two investment portfolios (one with Charles Stanley), two cash ISAs (not with Charles Stanley) and three bank accounts, as well as NS&I premium bonds. Martin had always looked after everything, and Laura didn’t really understand how it all fitted together.
When talking about money, I always think it’s a good idea to include other people who are close to you, and so I recommended Laura’s daughter Melanie join our meetings. This meant Laura would have someone else there to ask the questions she might not feel comfortable bringing up herself.
In the first instance, I suggested Laura would find it easier to keep track of her money if she had fewer accounts. She agreed and so I combined the two investment portfolios and merged her ISAs.
I also introduced Laura and Melanie to one of our financial planners, Simon Davis, who talked to them about inheritance tax. It’s a complicated issue and they hadn’t realised Melanie would be liable to pay this tax when she inherits money from her mother.
It’s been 4 years since Laura and I started working together and due to ill health, Laura has recently moved into a care home. Melanie now has power of attorney over her mum’s affairs. As a result, Laura’s family are now more informed about her finances and understand how her money is organised and how much she has, they are able to find the best way to support her.
I’m glad I’ve been able to relieve some of the family’s concerns about Laura’s financial situation during a challenging time. Laura no longer worries about her investments because she knows Melanie and I have a good relationship, and that I’ll continue to provide the same level of service to her family that I did when I was dealing with her directly.
Please note the client names in this story have been changed
"My favourite part of my role is helping my clients feel secure in their financial future, and knowing they trust that I’m doing the right thing for them and their family."
Tsitsi joined Charles Stanley in 2007 and is a Chartered Fellow of the CISI. She is a founding member of the Innovation Through Inclusion Group, which supports Charles Stanley’s diversity agenda, and a member of the Editorial Panel of the CISI’s magazine, The Review. Tsitsi was awarded the 2018 Women In Finance Rising Star of the Year Award, and the Bronze Woman of the Year Rising Star Award at the Citywealth 2019 Powerwomen Awards.
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