Investments and pensions in the palm of your hand!Posted on: 28 August 2013 by Lynne Williams
Lynne Williams examines how you can keep track of your money on devices such as tablets and smart phones.
If you're thinking that the worlds of pensions, investments and technology such as smart phones and tablets couldn't be further apart, well, it might be time for a rethink.
We've heard from many of our clients who haven't found it easy to keep track of how their investments are performing or to check on the growth of their pension.
There seem to be a number of reasons for this, and having discussed this with some of our clients, we've identified the most common ones:
- Not enough time to arrange a meeting with their financial adviser
- No representative available from their provider
- Out of sight, out of mind
- Lack of understanding due to complicated paperwork
- They have existing pension and savings plans scattered across various providers and it's difficult to know where they all are
- Providers often only make annual statements available, and at different times of the year, so it is difficult to get an overall picture
You may think that these sound familiar? It's quite a list, with a variety of fairly complex problems, suggesting that a solution would have to be similarly complex.
All of the issues boil down to accessibility in one way or another. And a solution could be in the palm of your hand at this moment. That's right, your phone or tablet.
With new mobile technology, getting access to information about your pension and other investments is becoming much easier and faster. Worldwide Financial Planning already uses social media such as Twitter, Facebook and more recently our online financial planning magazine on Flipboard, to communicate with clients, but it goes much further than that.
In conjunction with this is there is the increased use of investment platforms or wraps.
How does a wrap work? As the name suggests, it's a little bit like a wrapper surrounding and protecting all your investments, ISA's and pension plans. It's accessible online and is a one-stop place for keeping track of and managing all your investments.
There are a few different wraps and platforms, with wraps being generally more flexible than platforms. You may have heard of some of the companies that run platforms and wraps, such as Standard Life, Skandia and Nucleus.
At Worldwide, we have offered wrap to our clients for a number of years now.
Using a wrap in conjunction with mobile technology, such as your smart phone or tablet, can give you even greater time and cost savings.
A valuation can be viewed online in seconds. Investment reviews will be very efficient as all the information is held in one place. All purchases are online, which reduces the amount of paperwork.
We've summarised the advantages of using wrap with on-the-go technology below, based on what our clients have told us:
- You can use your smart phone, tablet computer, laptop or your desk PC
- You have the ability to check on performance for the past week / month / year or since it started
- You can see which funds are doing well, and which ones you need to keep an eye on
- Everything is summarised on one screen
- You can have contact with your adviser via email or phone while on the move, making access much more flexible for both of you
- You are able to print out your own reports so you can keep track of your investments
At the same time, it means that your financial adviser is only a click or a call away, so quality independent financial advice is even more quick and easy to access.
While easier access to your investments means greater involvement for you and greater ability to keep track of your money, it doesn't mean you have to take on any greater risk or responsibility. In fact, ideally it means that your money will be even better looked-after as both you and your adviser have greater access to each other and to your investments.
The value of shares and investments can go down as well as up.
Information given is for general guidance only, and specific advice should be taken before acting on any suggestions made. All information is based on our understanding of current tax practices, which are subject to change. Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.
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