Lets be honest, the last 12 months have been tough – especially for school leaders. But it does now feel as though better times are on the horizon.
Over the last year, some of us may have actually benefitted from not going out, going on holiday or spending like we used to. As it’s meant more money saved, which could be put towards a brighter financial future. As normality starts to return this year, it’s worth thinking about how you could put any extra savings you have built up to good use.
The last 12 months have also proved a tricky time for people with investments. The UK stock market fell by more than 30% between 20 February and 23 March 2020, as the world seemed to turn on its head. It led to a lot of uncertainty. And, across the market, a lot of people withdrew their investments in March 2020.
But for investors who were able to stay calm, the rewards would follow. And what we’re seeing is a familiar story about the value of investing your money towards your long-term goals – and staying patient.
It’s also a story that shows how long-term investing could help you achieve your financial aspirations.
It’s about time, not timing
Investors who decided to sell their investment in March 2020 might well be kicking themselves now. Given how most markets have improved since. Those who kept sight of their long-term goals and didn’t get too concerned about short-term market movements, will be in a better position now.
And here’s the thing – this isn’t unusual. Every so often, markets will have a sharp fall. But whilst past performance is not a guide to future returns, and economic conditions experienced in the past may not be repeated in the future, history often shows that markets recover.
Keep calm and carry on? We will try to
Mark Butterworth, NAHT Personal Financial Services Head of Financial Advice – Planning and Research explains, “Sometimes, the hardest thing to do is nothing. When markets fall, it can often be front page news. When they’re going up, it gets less attention. Even the most experienced of investors might have felt anxious last year. But keeping sight of your long-term goals is so important.
“One year on, and with the vaccine programme working really well so far, there is genuine optimism about the road ahead.”
Financial advice could help you plan with confidence
Lockdown life has had all kinds of different effects on our spending habits. Figures from the Office for Budget Responsibility show that by the summer, it is estimated that households will have collectively saved £180 billion (since lockdown began in March 2020).
If you’ve been in a position to save more money, it’s worth thinking about how you could put it to good use to support your future financial goals. Especially as the reopening of the UK, and return to normal life, could mean the next few years are a good opportunity to invest in a way that suits you. That’s providing you’re comfortable to accept the risks involved and are looking to invest for at least five years.
As interest rates remain low, there’s a limit to how much your money can grow in a savings account. And while there are no guarantees, investing could offer you the potential to achieve higher returns.
Speaking with experts
At NAHT Personal Financial Services, we’re here to help you identify and work towards your goals through no-obligation financial advice. Lloyd Batey, NAHT Personal Financial Services Senior Financial Adviser explains, “We offer tailored advice suited to personal feelings to risk and reward. To give you the confidence of investing in a way that’s right for you.
“Speaking to us could help you find suitable options for your money. It won’t cost you to have an initial discussion with us, and to hear personalised recommendations. A charge will apply if you take up our advice though.”
Stock market-based investments put your capital at risk and you may get back less than you invested. The value of your investments and any income from them may fall as well as rise.
Get in touch
NAHT Personal Financial Services is a trading name of Skipton Building Society, which is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority, under registration number 153706, for accepting deposits, advising on and arranging mortgages and providing Restricted financial advice. Principal Office, The Bailey Skipton. N. Yorks BD23 1DN