Finsbridge Financial Planning: An integrated approach to a secure retirement and family wealth preservation

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Rohit Rohela is a Chartered MSCI Financial Planner & Managing Director at Finsbridge Financial Planning, part of Aegis Financial Planning Limited.

Mr Rohela lends his expert view on the current retirement landscape in the UK and how you can safely and seamlessly venture into early retirement.


The concept of retirement has undergone a seismic shift in recent years. With increased life expectancies and a growing desire for financial independence, the allure of an active, early retirement is stronger than ever. This new dream retirement means breaking away from the traditional work life, freeing up time for personal pursuits and family time, whilst bidding farewell to obligatory job responsibilities.

But how does one translate this dream into reality? Enter the realm of Lifetime Financial Planning, a service cornerstone at Finsbridge. Our approach begins by envisioning your ideal retirement and determining the necessary income and capital to sustain your lifestyle. This vision becomes the foundation for constructing a bespoke investment portfolio tailored to meet and surpass your lifetime objectives. This tells us about the Magic Number needed to fund your life needs – both income and lump sum ones.

However, another dilemma surfaces when hard work leads to a surplus of financial resources beyond your lifetime needs. Here, integrating retirement planning with wealth preservation becomes crucial. Essential components include establishing a solid will and trust framework and implementing lasting powers of attorney for loss of physical or mental capacity.

This dual-focus approach ensures a fulfilling retirement while also safeguarding your family's financial future. By examining the following real-life case study, we can better understand how this integrated strategy plays out in practice.


Case Study 1: The Thompson Family

Let's delve into the journey of the Thompson family (names altered for privacy).

The Thompsons, aged 62 and 59, were on the cusp of retirement with a planned retirement age of 65 and 62, respectively. They owned a family business, had two adult children (34 and 32), and their primary goals were an enjoyable and plentiful retirement in their lifetime and eventually ensuring their accumulated wealth stays ring fenced within the family. Their vision was to enjoy their earnings and eventually leave a meaningful legacy for their children.

Both had healthy balances in their stocks and shares ISA (S&S ISA) and Self Invested Personal Pension (SIPP).


1. Lifetime Cashflow Modelling: Establishing the Foundation

The first step involved understanding the Thompsons' post-retirement needs, encompassing:

a) Painting a picture of their desired lifestyle – The Thompsons envision moving to the coast and downsizing to a two-bed sea facing bungalow, coming from the sale of their four-bed detached house in the South-East of England (this will be sold at retirement).

b) Projecting their projected discretionary and essential expenses – The cash flow plan identified their lifestyle needs - they would like the option to eat out more often, travel to four to six new holiday destinations every year and buy a new car at retirement, which they would then renew every four years.

c) Modelling paying off all the debts - the mortgage on their main home had a term remaining of eight years, we modelled paying it off by retirement age – the choices were between making overpayments now and paying it off later using the proceeds of the sale. The clients agreed to use the proceeds of the sale of their main home and the business to pay off the mortgage.

d) Establishing what they would like to leave as a legacy for future generations – they would like to help with school/university education for their grandchildren in the future. The children are well settled, so would not need to rely on the inherited funds themselves.


2. Investment Strategy: Achieving the Magic Number

Armed with a clear blueprint from the Finsbridge Lifestyle Masterplan, the next steps was to craft a tailored investment strategy focused on tax efficiency:

a) Structuring the asset strategy - we analysed the extent to which the non-pension assets could provide the retirement income needs. As pension assets are free of Inheritance Tax, it was clever planning to use non-pension assets for income.

b) Shaping the Access Trajectory – our modelling showed us that their Stocks and Shares ISAs would pay for their income needs for the first 10 years of their retirement. After this, they could use the capital released from the sale of their business.

c) Deploying the capital released from downsizing – one part of the capital released would pay off their mortgage. For the remainder, our tax efficient planning suggested an offshore investment bond that would be an excellent solution. This was an insurance-based investment product that would provide the Thompsons a tax deferred income (treated as capital withdrawals, so no income tax!) up to 5% of their initial capital, which they could increase or decrease as they liked.

d) Extracting Capital from the business – we advised the Thompsons to maximise their company contributions to their pensions (£60,000 annual allowance – saving corporation tax and higher rate dividend tax of circa 33.75%.

e) We set their investment strategy to capital preservation for the monies they would need in the first three years of retirement, leaving the remainder to grow whilst invested in shares/equity based assets (this will be evaluated at every regular review (every six months or yearly as per service level).


3. Business Exit and Succession Planning: Securing the family legacy

Given that the Thompsons’ business was one of the primary sources of family wealth, a robust exit and succession plan was crucial.

We started working on a methodical approach:

Valuing the Business and Legal Advice – we introduced the clients to accredited brokers in their industry and trusted chartered accountants to accurately assess the expected sale value of the business. This included consultancy on restructuring the business over the three-year period prior to sale – to reduce unnecessary costs and improve the product/marketing for maximum profitability. We also introduced the clients to a trusted law firm in the local area, who would help them set up robust contracts for sale and exit terms/earn out etc.

b) Creating a Robust Legal Framework for Succession – the same law firm have a wills and trust division, which helped them set up a comprehensive will and trust framework, as well as Lasting Powers of Attorney for Health and Welfare. The ownership of their family home was split to tenants in common, with the Nil Rate Band (NRB) being “banked” on first death by moving £325,000 of the equity in the property into a NRB Trust – with the surviving spouse being the trustee. When both pass away, their entire estate would move into two Beneficiary Protection Trusts (Discretionary Post Death Will Trusts) for their children, thereby protecting the assets from dissipation due to divorce, creditor claims, bankruptcy, future IHT when the assets pass through the bloodline etc.

c) Deploying the Sale Proceeds – when the business was ready for sale, we updated the cash flow plan. This suggested the proceeds of sale were surplus to their retirement needs. We agreed to invest these into a portfolio of Business Relief Qualifying Investments. These are specialist managed investments that provide inheritance tax relief – whilst providing access to the capital and the returns it generates. (In this instance as the investment was made from business sale proceeds, the IHT exemption was immediate at the point of investment.)

With the family business being a significant wealth source, an effective exit and succession plan was pivotal:

a) Valuing the business and seeking legal advice for restructuring and sale.

b) Establishing a comprehensive legal framework for succession.

c) Strategically deploying the sale proceeds.



The Thompsons' case underscores the importance of an integrated approach to retirement planning and family wealth preservation. By considering both the present and the future, you can retire comfortably and ensure that your legacy remains protected for generations to come. For families with substantial assets and businesses, such a comprehensive strategy is not just a luxury but a necessity.

At Finsbridge Financial Planning, we understand that every situation is unique. Our advice is personalised and tailored to your specific needs. To learn more, contact us at or call 0330 390 5006. You can also visit our website here.

We can have an hour-long complimentary consultation for a Retirement Readiness Discovery Meeting. We aim to learn more about you and your life goals, values and vision – and showcase the value we can add to your financial freedom. We call it Living Life by Design!

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