Thursday, 28 January 2016

Your Financial Countdown When Moving House

Moving house can be a very stressful time, packing and unpacking and making sure that children, pets and prized belongings make it to the new property all take their toll.

In addition to this, there are a range of small but important admin jobs that need to be done before, during and after the move.

This blog post is a quick guide to help you make sure the most essential financial tasks are completed and your move does not cost you any more than it absolutely has to (in cash or stress terms).

Moving home checklist
Organisation is key with any house move and it pays to make a checklist of things to do before you start the long moving project. 

You might find that there are longer and shorter term tasks to attend to so you can give yourself weeks to address the former and less time to deal with the latter. 

Longer term tasks might be the boxing up of valuables, sending pets into kennels if it is a long distance or overseas move.

You will need to organise a removals firm and contact reliable local tradesmen if work needs doing on the new property. 

Short term tasks
 Adding to the overall stress of the move are the small but essential tasks that can only be done once you get the keys to the property.

Informing the utility companies about your change of address, making sure the local authority knows that you are the new council tax payer and registering for a TV licence at the new property are important tasks that can become costly if you ignore them.

Protecting your property
You will of course need buildings and home contents insurance on your new property, you might choose to continue with the existing policy provider who covered your old home, or find someone new.

If you continue with your existing provider you need to inform them of your new circumstances so they can either amend or cancel your existing policy and create a new one for your new home.

Whilst you are moving, your belongings will no longer be covered by home content insurance, so it might be a good idea to get removals cover.

This policy will protect you against mishap if your property is damaged during the move (a rare but not unheard of occurrence).

Financial planning after the move
Once you have unpacked the last box and found the perfect place for your belongings, it might be time to review your own financial planning.

House moving normally involves an increased mortgage and council tax bill as most people try to ascend the property ladder if possible. 

These new financial pressures often mean that savings, investing and family finance become more difficult to manage. 

For many new homeowners paying the mortgage becomes a central financial challenge.  Finding areas of potential savings with a thorough post-move financial audit can be a valuable exercise.

If you are able to cut back on unnecessary expenses such a gym memberships, Netflix subscriptions or organic veg-boxes, you might be able to channel the savings you make into a savings account or investments.

Whilst moving house is inevitably a stressful and taxing exercise, the whole point of moving to a new property is to improve your quality of life, not to downgrade it.

Sensible forward planning can help with this and, if not eliminate stress, then certainly help reduce it. You will also make sure you have covered all bases on your move.

If, after moving you decide that a financial audit is necessary, it might be a good idea to get the advice and expertise of an independent financial adviser to help explore your saving and investing options.

For more information please do not hesitate to contact the team at Ward Williams Financial Services Ltd on 01932 830664 or by email on

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Workplace Pensions are here to stay

The Pension Regulator (TPR) is turning up the heat on Employers.

Since the introduction of Auto Enrolment in 2012, the TPR have issued:

  • 469 Compliance Notices
  • 85 Unpaid Contribution Notices
  • 107 Fixed Penalty Notices
  • 2 Escalating Penalty Notices

In a report TPR said:

“In the next 12 months, more than 500,000 employers will go through Automatic Enrolment.  We expect to see a rise in the number of times we need to use our powers, so our message to employers remains clear: start getting your plans in place early or you risk being fined.”

If you need assistance in setting up an Auto Enrolment compliant scheme, Ward Williams Financial Services Ltd are able to assist.  Please contact us on 01932 830664 or