About Wizard Financial Awareness
The Wizard Financial Awareness information website is designed to enhance your awareness of money and financial issues and give you a greater understanding of the products you may already have, or that may be recommended to you or your family by a financial adviser.
In addition, you can contact any of the financial advisers featured on the site to discuss the issues we feature on this site, or to seek advice regarding your own personal circumstances. These advisers use our financial adviser training website as part of their continuing professional development, demonstrating that they are committed to maintaining their competence, increasing their technical knowledge and keeping up to date with industry changes.
The Wizard Financial Awareness website is designed to assist anyone who is seeking a clearer understanding of the financial services industry as a whole, and of the wide range of products and services available, in jargon-free and easy to understand language.
In the financial planning section, we provide information on how the industry is structured and the different types of advice available to consumers following a recent review by the regulator. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) oversee and regulate the entire industry.
By breaking down the overall advice process into its separate stages and clearly explaining what will happen, and more importantly why, any concerns you may have about what seeking ‘financial advice’ entails can be alleviated, allowing the actual meetings between adviser and client to be as beneficial and worthwhile as possible for both parties.
This section examines the importance of setting timescales when investing your money, and explains the benefits of investing for the longer term, showing how this can help in mitigating the effects of inflation on investment returns. There are four main investment areas: cash, fixed interest securities, equities (shares) and property, and the characteristics of each are fully described, along with explanations of how these different areas can be combined in different ways within certain investment products to achieve your financial goals.
The concept of risk and reward is explored and the potential impacts of risk on the returns available from different investments are clarified.
In today’s unstable economic climate and the inherent uncertainty in job security, protecting what income and assets you already have has become vitally important, regardless of your personal and family situation. Although many people have taken the wise step to protect their family against the potentially devastating financial consequences arising from the death of the breadwinner, they frequently overlook the financial impact of a long-term inability to work through accident or illness.
Within this section, we examine the various types of insurance policies available to provide lump sums of capital or ongoing income, along with elderly care insurances and those specifically designed to ensure that businesses can continue to trade when unexpected events occur that affect their business plans.
The recent reforms and new legislation being introduced into the area of pensions means that many more people will now be automatically provided with pension benefits from their employers.
Pensions are often seen as a very technically complex area, but here we offer simple explanations of the two different types of pension scheme that an employer can offer, including comprehensive details of the benefits they provide to the employees who contribute to them.
Joining a pension scheme is an important step towards providing a comfortable living when you are no longer working, and it is without a doubt one that should be considered by everyone - the financial support available from the Government in the form of State pensions depends on a number of factors and, at best, will prove disappointingly inadequate for most individuals. Given the importance of this area of financial planning, consideration is also given in this section to the importance of seeking professional advice before any definite decisions are taken.
The only things certain in life are death and taxes! The information provided in the taxation section is relevant to everyone living in the UK. Although not everyone will need to be concerned about all of the taxes covered, it is certain that at least some of the information will be of relevance to you – it is almost impossible to escape the impact of taxation completely.
We provide information such as: what each of the taxes are, to whom or what they apply, when a liability might arise, examples of how a liability is calculated, and details of how and when monies due are paid to HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).
Although everyone’s financial situation is unique, the information provided here serves as a general overview to help individuals to understand their own tax affairs, and to be aware of any potential tax liabilities that they may have, now or in the future.