Tag Archive | retirement plans

Boost Your Retirement Pot With These Nifty Tricks

When is the right time to give your retirement savings a boost? The answer is always right now. Whether you’re just starting out in your career or eyeballing giving up work in the next ten years, it’s never going to be a bad time to make sure your pension pot is topped up, after you’ve sorted out any debt you have.

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The power of compound interest means you’ll be better off overall if you’ve started out on your savings plan early, but a boost is always welcome.

As we are all living longer and being much more active in later life, we need to become even more careful with our money, and make sure that we have a comprehensive retirement plan in place to manage our investments and any business ventures to generate additional income.

Here’s how to maximize your nest egg in the short to medium term..

1. Reduce The Costs Of Investing

Costs related to your investments are eroding money from your return, so it’s a good idea to look at reducing them as far as possible. If you have investment in mutual or exchange traded funds then there will be hidden fees associated with them.

In particular, there is an expense ratio attached to each fund – essentially the fee you pay for it’s management. If you pay an Independent Financial Adviser to help you in your purchases, that is on top of the costs you pay them.

When you also add on transaction fees and loads, it’s suddenly a lot of money. So it’s worth looking out lower cost options with a similar profile, or checking with your Financial Advisor they they are also using the lower cost options.

Even a small percentage, when looked at over the lifetime of your investment, can make a big difference to your future profits.

And sadly, it’s a common scenario for investments to be put into higher expense funds simply because they yield a bigger commission for the broker!

2. Get Into Property Development

Housing is a good way to make your investments work harder, especially in these days of rising property demand. You don’t have to be a tradesmen to transform a run-down property into a desirable new home – you just need a good network of contractors with CIS registration and a good head for a business case.

Pick up properties at auction and let location be your main guide – most other factors can be changed. Make sure that you have familiarized yourself with average selling prices in the area and factored in what you are likely to make as a profit margin once the sale and legal costs, plus the cost of the development work, are taken into account.

3. Add In A Lump Sum

You can top up your retirement income by adding lump sums to your pension plan. Any random windfall, tax refund or bonus at work – add a few thousand and with the power of interest rates it will make a big difference over a few years.

A few thousand at five per cent can be a really welcome sum to add to your retirement package.

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The Truth About Becoming An Entrepreneur

The world has gone entrepreneur mad in recent years – or so it seems, at least. And because we are hearing so much about people starting their own businesses, it is tempting to join their ranks and reap the same rewards.

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But, of course, nothing is ever that simple. And there are some harsh truths about becoming an entrepreneur that you need to know before packing in the 9-5 and making a go of it. Because the simple fact is that your chances of success are incredibly slim, for a variety of reasons. Let’s take a closer look at everything you need to know.

It’s not a road to riches

Some entrepreneurs make a fortune; it’s true. However, in the vast majority of cases, it is a long old road even to get close to achieving similar success. The truth is that many people will end up better off staying in their jobs, getting a regular pay packet, and enjoying all the benefits that go along with it, including retirement plans, vacation pay, and even sick pay.

The ‘be your own boss’ myth

Many people wish to become entrepreneurs because they want to be their own boss. But you never will be in the vast majority of cases. Let’s assume you start a service business – you will be 100 percent beholden to your client’s every desire.

If you launch a product business, the customer ends up controlling everything about your products – and, by association, your company. And if you ever end up being in a position where you are looking for investment, then you can guarantee that whoever gives you funding will want a significant amount of control for their money.

You need contacts

Going it completely along is almost impossible to do if you want to be an entrepreneur. A broad range of contacts is essential. Let’s assume your entrepreneurial goals are focusing on real estate.

You might follow the likes of @nicolaslivsit on Twitter or check in with the journalists on one of the industry-leading websites such as Investopedia. The point is, whatever industry you are targeting, there will be thought leaders and influencers out there that are way ahead of you.

And you have to focus on developing relationships with these people and making the contacts you need for success.

It’s the ultimate sacrifice

Enjoy your weekends? Love spending time with your family at home? Looking forward to nights out with friends in the next five years or so? You can put all those things to bed the second you decide to become an entrepreneur.

It’s hard work, and there will be no room for breaks, vacations – and in some cases, even sleep. Time is not your own anymore; it now belongs to the business you are trying to forge.

You have to be positive

Unless you are the type of person who remains confident when everyone else is losing their minds with worry, you can forget about being an entrepreneur. There will be many pitfalls that stand in the way of your success, and you are the person who needs to lead the team through them. Best of luck!