Category Archives: Gresham News

Gresham Turns Ten – Memories from the Gresham Team

The start of April saw Gresham Wealth Management turn 10 years old.

Before the outbreak of Coronavirus, we had a number of celebrations planned. These have obviously had to be postponed until a later date when it will hopefully become safe to join together once more.

As a way of marking the milestone in a virtual way, some of our team have shared their favourite memories from their time at Gresham.

Alison Reeves – Technical team

“One of my standout memories has to be achieving Chartered Status and graduating at a ceremony in London last year.

“Obviously this was a personal achievement, but one that I couldn’t have met without the support of Gresham. Not only do Gresham fund the exams for employees, they also allow time off for study leave in addition to annual leave.

“Becoming Chartered has given me a real confidence boost and has also equipped me with in-depth knowledge that I have been able to apply when undertaking client work.”

Samantha Brannigan – Technical team

“There is lots to celebrate from both a business point of view and also personal achievements, which for me include achieving Chartered status.

“One of the things I am proudest of is the amount we have been able to contribute to charity over the years, in particular the annual Christmas gifts we purchase in association with Barnardos. This started off as an idea to replace secret Santa with a charity donation instead, and has grown to the point where we have now purchased hundreds of gifts for children who might not otherwise receive anything at Christmas.

“Gresham really does have an ethos of ‘giving back’ – and this is something that we can all be proud of”.

Lorna Jervis – Client relations

“Having been with Gresham during the preparation period for set up and our first opening day, I have many memories from over the years. The things that stick out the most are the key milestone events – such as the opening of our first office in Sale, the start of our journey (we even had a ribbon cutting ceremony, although the pics seem to have disappeared!) and then later as we grew, our office move to Hale.

“We are a small, hardworking team and have grown in numbers over the years, to what is now a great group of people to work alongside.

“Team nights out in Summertime and Christmas are a great reward and a chance for us all to enjoy time together outside the office. Over the years we have been to several new and exciting venues and have also attended numerous events in support of charities.

“These last 10 years have simply flown by and I’m looking forward to the next 10!”

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Gresham Turns Ten!

The 1st April 2020 saw Gresham Wealth Management turn 10 years old.

If there was one way we hadn’t imagined celebrating our milestone birthday, it was being in Covid-19 lockdown! We had so many big things planned, including a team outing to London with a celebratory meal, as well as an event for our clients. It seems odd to not even have been able to celebrate with our team – with everyone working from home, we couldn’t even share the special day with the very people who make and have made Gresham the firm it is today.

Despite the unusual circumstances, we didn’t want to let the occasion pass without mention. With so much terrible news around, this is one piece of positive news that we wanted to share.

From the team members and clients who have been with us since day one, right through to our most recent recruits and new clients, it’s only right to express our gratitude. So thank you to every single individual, couple, professional contact and company who have helped and supported us along the way.

Just because we haven’t been able to celebrate at the time we intended, it doesn’t mean the party is cancelled. We are still planning to go ahead with everything we had lined up, it will just be a case of doing it later in the year, when it’s safe and appropriate to do so.

One thing is for sure, when we come out the other side of this, the celebrations will be worth the wait!

Morven and Jonathan

 

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Coronavirus Scams on the Rise – Don’t Get Caught Out

The past few weeks has seen Coronavirus take over not only the headlines, but also our daily lives. From watching the Prime Minister’s daily briefings through to making changes to our habits and activities, our normal lives have become temporarily suspended as we focus on the health and welfare of our friends and families.

Unfortunately, this may lead some people to let their guard down around other areas, leaving the opportunity for scammers and fraudsters to take advantage.

Indeed, reports of Coronavirus related scams are already emerging. Scammers are now praying on the public’s worry, targeting victims using a wide variety of methods including emails, text messages, social media posts, online advertisements and phone calls.

Here are some tips of what to watch out for:

Fraudulent sellers

In their desperation to get hold of protective items or cleaning products, people are being caught out by ordering items such as face masks, hand gel and cleaning staples from fake companies, paying to purchase items that never arrive. Be mindful of any emails you receive offering the sale of these goods and only buy from trusted websites you have shopped from previously.

Doorstepping

Most people would normally be wary of doorsteppers, but the techniques being used in the light of the Coronavirus crisis are catching people out. Scams include people knocking on doors claiming to be from the health services to offer tests and vaccines for Covid-19, through to people volunteering to go and buy essentials and never returning with the goods. You should exercise the same level of caution you would normally, never handing over cash or bank details to anyone unknown who knocks on your door.

Holiday refunds

Many of us will have had holidays planned and unfortunately cancelled due to the Coronavirus outbreak. As a result, there are a number of scams circulating regarding applying for refunds or compensation. Do not give your credit card or bank details either over the phone or by email. Many companies should be able to issue a refund automatically to your original payment method. If in doubt, call the company you booked with directly on the phone number you know to be correct, ie. on the original booking confirmation email.

Charity appeals

It is true that many people are suffering in different ways as a result of the Coronavirus crisis and those of us with a generous nature may want to try and help. Beware of emails from supposed health organisations, such as the WHO, asking for donations to help with research. Anything of this nature is unlikely to be genuine.

If you are keen to help, get in touch with a charity by visiting their website or ringing them directly. Never click links in emails or in online advertisements as these could take you to fake websites that are being operated by fraudsters.

Offers of one-off payments

There have been reports of scams that are asking people to enter their postcode and bank/card details in order to receive a one-off payment from the government. There is no such scheme currently available, so do not be tempted to submit any of your details.

General tips:

• Never give your bank details over the phone – even your bank will never ask for these.
• At this time, we should be strictly limiting our social contact to those we live with. But in the event that you need to, only allow neighbours, friends, family members or known health professionals into your home.
• Remember that fraudsters do this for a living and can be extremely convincing. No-one is immune to the tricks of scammers and even some of our savviest clients have been caught out over the years. In these times of uncertainty especially, please take further care and pay extra attention.

If you are unsure about any email, phone call or contact you receive, please feel free to send it on to us for advice. It may be helpful to familiarise yourself with our team, so you can be sure you are speaking to someone trustworthy.

Meet our team here.

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Coronavirus – Update as of 24th March

First of all, we wish to start this message by saying we hope you are all keeping well and staying in positive spirits during these difficult and uncertain times.

Since our previous update, the situation regarding the spread of COVID-19 has escalated and we have seen much more stringent restrictions put in place regarding our day-to-day movements.

Despite this, we remain fully operational, with clients able to contact their adviser in the usual way.

The health and safety of our staff and clients is paramount and we are also keen to ensure we are playing our part in helping to reduce the spread of the virus.

As such, we now have the following measures in place:

  • Our advisers are fully contactable, either by telephone, or email as the preferred method.
  • Clients can also call the office phone number as usual, which is being diverted to our support team.
  • As well as being on hand to help clients with day to day queries, we remain on hand to help and support other professionals and their clients as required.
  • In line with government advice, all of our staff are now working remotely from home. We are working hard to maintain the integrity and high level of service that clients expect.
  • We will not be conducting face-to-face meetings for the time being. We are not currently arranging any new appointments for the month of April. Any appointments that have already been scheduled will go ahead either via a phonecall or conference call.
  • We are currently experiencing delays from a number of providers due to them facing a shortage of staff. This may unfortunately result in a knock-on effect for client queries. As always, our team remain extremely proactive on our clients’ behalf and we will do our upmost to minimise the impact for clients.

 

We thank you for your continued support and send our best wishes to you and your families.

 

The Gresham Team  

 

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2020 Budget Summary

The 2020 Budget was an unusual one for many reasons.

Firstly, the Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak had been in place for less than 4 weeks at the time of delivering his statement. To compound this, Mr Sunak’s had the outbreak of the Coronovirus to contend with, undoubtedly meaning the budget will have had to undergo several revisions as emergency measures were formulated.

In another unexpected turn of events, the Bank of England announced an emergency interest rate cut of 0.5% at 7 am on the day of the Budget, bringing the base rate to its historic low of 0.25%.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the Coronovirus took centre stage in Mr Sunak’s Budget as he looked to quell the growing fears of businesses and the general public alike. Outside of this, there were still a number of key announcements that will have the potential to impact our clients.

We take a look at these in further detail…

Changes to pension tapering

From 6 April 2020, the adjusted income limit will rise to £240,000 (increased from £150,000) and the threshold income limit will rise to £200,000 (increased from £110,000).

The current rules are that anyone earning over £110,000 (who has a total income of over £150,000, including their pension contributions) would not be able to contribute the full £40,000 annual allowance into their pension. Instead tapering rules apply, with a £1 reduction for every £2 that their income exceeds £150,000, down to a £10,000 minimum contribution.

From 6 April 2020 those earning up to £200,000 (or £240,000 with the pension contribution) will no longer be subject to tapering rules; allowing a full £40,000 annual contribution to be made.

However, for higher earners the government also reduced the minimum annual allowance under the tapering rules from £10,000 to £4,000. Therefore, anyone earning more than £300,000 will be worse off as a result.

The lifetime allowance for pensions will increase to £1,073,100 from 6 April 2020 in line with inflation.

Increase to JISA allowance

The Junior ISA allowance has more than doubled from £4,368 to £9,000 per annum from 6 April 2020.

Cut to Entrepreneurs Relief

Changes to Entrepreneurs’ Relief were widely predicted before the Budget, with many forecasting the complete abolition of the relief. Instead, there has been a significant cut to the lifetime limit from £10 million to £1 million.

The new £1 million lifetime limit on gains will take effect from 11 March 2020 and will take into account all previous disposals. Similarly, any events that have taken place before 11 March 2020 and that crystallise a gain after Budget Day, will be subject to the new rules.

Increase in NIC threshold

The threshold at which taxpayers start to pay NICs National Insurance Contributions (‘NICs’) will increase from 6 April 2020 to £9,500 per annum. This rise is part of the Government’s commitment to reduce contributions by the low paid. The increase applies to both employed (Class 1) and self-employed (Class 4) individuals.

Corporation tax

The government has scrapped the previously planned reduction in the corporation tax rate, so it will remain at 19%.

 

There were several other measures announced in relation to businesses including an increase to the Structures and Buildings Allowances (‘SBAs’) rate and enhancements to Research and Development (‘R&D’) tax credits for large companies. These are alongside the emergency measures introduced in the light of the Coronovirus, including an extension of Business Rates Relief and the changes to Statutory Sick Pay qualification.

For more information on any of the above outlined announcements and how it might affect your personal finances, please get in touch with one of our advisers.

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