Top 6 Investment Checklist 

Having a strategy to reach your financial goals is vital. And sticking with the long term plans you have made to build your wealth and reach your goals is a sound tactic.

But sometimes tactics have to change.

Inflation is down, recession is over and new tax rules and regulations have come into force. There may be new threats to avoid, and new opportunities to be explored.

A changed financial landscape means an investment review is vital. Here are the seven checks you need to make.

1. Check your goals

Why are you investing? Buying a home, retirement, just growing money or generating an income?

You should have an investment strategy designed to help you reach those goals. But what has changed? You may be a little closer to them – which means you might want to look at reducing risks to tie in the gains you have made.

Have there been health issues, marriage or divorce or changes to your work? They all impact what you need from investment, how much you can afford to invest, and when you want to cash in.  You may need to adjust your portfolio accordingly. 

2. Check your attitude to risk

Much of your attitude to risk is driven by your emotions, but risk itself is driven by the markets.

When you are starting out as an investor, you can embrace risk, because you have time to make back any losses when a speculative investment fails. As the years go by that risk becomes less acceptable.

Time has moved on. If your need and appetite for risk has reduced, you may want to weed out the risker items from your portfolio.

3.  Check performance

You need to ensure that your investments are performing in the way that you anticipated. It’s time for benchmarking – comparing your holdings against market averages.

Take a long view. Stock market volatility is inevitable, and short-term fluctuations and underperformance is inevitable and should not be a cause for panic. In fact, short term falls can be an opportunity to top up at lower prices. 

But if the assets you hold are consistently underperforming and showing a downward trend, it may be time to look at replacing them. 

4. Check the tax changes

There have been some important changes in the tax rules affecting investment.

The lifetime allowance on pension saving has been abolished, meaning that you can make more contributions to your pension and still benefit from substantial tax relief.

On the downside, there are changes to capital gains tax, which will mean the taxman will take a larger share when you come to sell your investments. You may want to move more of your assets into an ISA or other tax-efficient vehicles to avoid this threat.

5. Check your asset allocation

A good spread of investments (diversification) is important, and so is balancing the proportions of those investments to control risk.

This rebalancing might sometimes mean selling assets that are performing well.

Selling good performing assets may seem strange, but remember, if some of your high-risk investments have done well, they may leave you with a portfolio that is satisfyingly bigger, but also with a much higher overall risk profile. It could be time for profit taking and redirecting the funds you have released into less speculative assets. 

6. Check that your strategy really is right for you

Planning the investment strategy that is suitable for you is the foundation of investment success.

At Continuum we can work with you to develop a strategy around your goals and resources. It can include milestones, showing where you need to be on your wealth creation journey, giving you a sound basis for your review.

We can also help you with the review itself, showing you the impact of tax changes, and using our up to the moment knowledge of the investment market to suggest the appropriate assets you need now.

To get the help you need to review the investments you already have, or to find the most suitable best way to start an investment journey, simply call us.

The information contained in this article is based on the opinion of Continuum and does not constitute financial advice or a recommendation to suitable investment strategy, you should seek independent financial advice before embarking on any course of action.

The value and returns of an investment are not guaranteed, investors may lose some or all of their investment. Capital is at risk.

The Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate taxation advice, and UK Government Securities.

Past performance is not a guide to future performance and should not be used to assess the risk associated with the investment

The tax treatment of pensions in general and tax implications of pension withdrawals will

be based on individual circumstances, tax legislation and regulation, which are subject to change in the future.

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