SKQ Issue 1

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issue 1

SKQ A publication from


welcome Welcome to SK’s first ever magazine - SK Quarterly. We have been busy revamping our client communications to make our services even better. We have also joined the YouTube scene with client story videos featuring Simon Greenwood and Joanna Abeyie. Be sure to check them out if you haven’t already.

As we near the end of these colder months, we’re looking forward to enjoying the Spring and all being well, a bit of sunshine! But with the newly redesigned lounge area at our Snow Hill offices, if the sun’s not out, there’s always somewhere inviting to spend time, so do come and say hello.

As this is our first issue and a time for fresh starts, we’re focusing on helping you plan for what lies ahead. With the financial year end fast approaching, we have put together a few words to ensure you are prepared. Kunle has provided tips on how to achieve more balance in your life and we’ve thrown in some of our favourite hotspots around the UK too. We hope you find something you’ll want to try out for yourself.

We hope you enjoy SKQ and encourage you to share it with anyone you think may find it useful. If you have any feedback or would like to contribute to our next issue, I’d love to hear from you.

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Chloe Editor


The newly designed lounge area at SK’s Snow Hill offices

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NEW OPPORTUNITIES AT THE END OF THE FINANCIAL YEAR The beginning of a new year (and a new decade) sees many of us busily making plans for 2020. As well as deciding where your next holiday will be, an important part of those plans should be taking advantage of tax year end opportunities. Now is the perfect time to determine whether there is scope to save by making the most of unused reliefs and allowances. The April deadline provides a compulsory line in the sand, to encourage us all to take action and we are here to provide the knowledge and support you need to make informed decisions. SKQ issue 1 | 4

The core elements of tax year end planning remain the same; •

Make full use of available tax advantaged savings, such as pensions and ISAs.

Ensure tax allowances are fully utilised and opportunities to extract savings tax efficiently are not wasted.

For families, don’t forget to consider the respective tax rates and unused allowances of both partners.

Please let us know if you would like a chat to see if there is anything you could be doing before 5th April as part of your financial plan. Winter always turns to Spring quicker than we think so don’t leave it too late to plan! *Tax planning is not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority

YOUR QUESTIONS…ANSWERED This is where we answer those questions you’ve always wanted to ask, but never quite got round to. Whether you want to know more about us, how we work, our business or of course about the wider finance sector, this is the place to come.

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What does SK stand for? The business was set up by David Steppings and Lee Knott in 2004. The “S” is from Steppings and the “K” from Knott.

Why do we pay Income Tax? It was introduced by William the Younger in 1799 to pay for the Napoleonic war. It was then abolished after the Battle of Waterloo (it was labelled as repugnant at the time) and the motion to cease Income Tax was passed in the House of Commons. It was reintroduced in 1842 by Sir Robert Peel to deal with a massive public deficit.

How many clients does SK have? In December 2015 we had 305 fee paying clients. This had increased to 434 by December 2019. The assets that we advise on increased from £66million to £112million over the same period.

Please send any questions you would like answered to

GET TO KNOW A member of the SK team tells us a bit more about their life, loves and future plans… Michael: I’m the newest addition to the SK team. I gained a 2.1 in History at Lincoln University and this is my first full time role. Even though I have only just started out in my financial services career, I previously completed two stints as an intern at SK, which helped make the decision to join SK an easy one. I am currently studying for my financial diploma. But I also find time to play football twice a week and I support Tottenham.

Any pets? I have a 2-year-old chocolate cockapoo called Milo. He also goes by the nickname ‘Dyson’ as he loves to hoover up our crumbs.

My next holiday is: Visiting my

A publication from family’s Italian hometown of San Giorgio. A small province of Piacenza, San Giorgio has some of the best rural restaurants that are hidden within the local Argellati farmland.

My favorite city is: New York or San Francisco. Although the cities couldn’t be more different, their unique history and amazing architecture meant that they quickly became my favourite places to visit. In San Francisco I loved visiting Alcatraz, whilst in New York I enjoy just walking around and looking up. What skill would you like to master? To play the piano. SKQ issue 1 | 5





TOP TIPS FOR ESTATE PLANNING I’m a husband and a father to six children which keeps me happy and focused. I also understand the importance of putting my affairs in order. I recognised just how vital this was when, in 2012, I was diagnosed with throat cancer. I didn’t meet the typical profile – I wasn’t old, I’d never smoked, and I wasn’t a heavy drinker. This was a life-changing event for me. Life changing events happen. You probably think that it won’t happen to you or at least that it’s a long way off, so you do nothing and put off planning to another day. But by putting plans in place now, you can make financial savings and eliminate future hassle and emotional distress for you and your loved ones. It really is an invaluable investment of time. Estate planning is relevant for everyone. Here are our top 10 suggestions of what you could do to kick start your own planning:

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Write a will detailing who should inherit what and when on your death. Don’t rely on the rules of intestacy. Implement Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPA) to look after your financial and health interests should you become unable to do so. It’s expensive and time-consuming to have to rely on applying to the courts if no LPAs are in place. Appoint guardians for minor children and provide detailed guidance on how to raise them. Be sure to provide for family members with special needs or those who might be irresponsible with money or need future protection from creditors or divorce. Trusts are useful for this purpose.

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Be sure to make necessary arrangements for your business interests on retirement, disability or death. Review your life assurance and pension death benefit nomination forms.

Have safe, secure storage for your important documents and electronic passwords.

Estate planning is an ongoing process and you should review your plans regularly as your family and financial situations - and laws - change. By the way, I’m now 8 years in remission – fingers crossed this continues!

Put plans in place to minimise taxes (especially inheritance tax at 40% and capital gains tax at up to 28%), court costs and unnecessary legal fees.

By Michael Budden, Lincs Private Client Services Ltd

Invest in pre-paid funeral plans. According to the Sun Life Cost of Dying Report 2020, the average total cost of dying in 2019 was £9,493, including professional fees.

At Lincs Private Client Services Ltd we will gladly help you ensure that your estate planning is complete and up to date. Just call or email us – 07711 618 269 or

Set up life assurance, critical illness insurance (a critical illness policy helped me financially) and/or income protection insurance.

*Will writing and estate planning is not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. SKQ issue 1 | 7

WELL BEING: the power of doing by Kunle Olafare 2019 saw me learn many new things, but two in particular stand out as having really helped me achieve greater balance in my life.

The Eisenhower Decision Matrix First up, is the Eisenhower Matrix. This simple decision-making model is named after Dwight David Eisenhower – an American army general and statesman who served as the 34th President of the United States from 1953 to 1961. During World War II, he was a five-star general in the United States Army and served as Supreme Commander who prepared the strategy for an Allied invasion of Europe. Eisenhower continuously had tough decisions to make about which of the many tasks he should focus on each day. This led him to invent the world-famous Eisenhower Matrix, which today helps me to plan and organise my schedule by urgency and importance. There is little value in being a busy fool!

Not Important




Not Urgent


Do it now

Schedule a time to do it



Who can do it for you?

Eliminate it

Being “Perfect” I also read the global sensation, “Lean In” by Sheryl Sandberg. In her book, Sandberg discusses the importance of getting the job done and not being fixated on it always being perfect (defined as having everything necessary complete and without faults or weaknesses). Surely, it’s better to do a job consistently well and consider ways to improve what you’re doing, rather than doing one job brilliantly and then putting yourself under pressure to deliver the next job and the next job brilliantly too. It’s an approach that fits perfectly with a quote from one of my favourite actors, Denzel Washington: “It’s about progress not perfection”. SKQ issue 1 | 8

“Sandberg discusses the importance of getting the job done and not being fixated on it always being perfect”




Each issue we share details of a few ofour favourite things:

Where to go…

Where to eat...

Richard Recommends; Clifton Suspension Bridge Visitor Centre – A less than obvious Bristol visitor attraction, but a sensational walk through the history of the bridge and its construction. Especially one for those with an eye towards the the technical.

Kunle Recommends; For casual dining, Dishoom for breakfast, Apulia in Farringdon for lunch and Pizza East in Shoreditch for dinner

What to listen to…

What’s new...

Chloe Recommends; The ‘She Can, She Did’ Podcast. An inspirational chat highlighting UK female entrepreneurs in their teens, twenties and thirties who have taken the leap and launched their own business.

Michael Recommends; Eataly will be opening a brand-new Italian food hall this year in Broadgate, London. It will have some of the best Italian bars and restaurants under one roof!

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A FINAL WORD ON… OUR AFTER CARE SERVICE By Emma Saltern As part of our commitment to providing the best on-going service to our clients we have structured our team to provide you with the best possible resources. As the lead on this service, I am supported by our fantastic team who bring a wealth of knowledge and experience. We’d really like to encourage you to make the most of our in-house team. Kunle, David, Neil and I will be available as always to provide ongoing advice and to answer any questions you may have with respect to your financial plan. Our team members and the main things you can contact them for are summarised below:

Emma leads the aftercare service, if you have any questions, suggestions or require financial advice, please speak to Emma. 07904 602088 020 8340 4644

If there is any technical information you’re looking for or any financial jargon you don’t understand, please contact Richard.

If you require performance details, a valuation, or want to make a change to your investments, please contact Michael. 020 7002 7983

If you require a valuation, need to make a withdrawal, need details about your policy or need to update your personal details, please contact Lesley. 07904 602088 020 8340 4644 020 8340 4644

If you have a suggestion for our magazine, the website or blog or if you want to feature in one of our future videos, please get in touch with Chloe.

If you want to arrange a meeting or have an agenda item that you want to discuss at your next review, then please speak to Tracey. 07904 602088 020 8340 4644

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“Before you act, listen. Before you read, think. Before you spend, earn. Before you criticize, wait. Before you pray, forgive. Before you quit, try.



SKF Trading Ltd trading as SK Financial. SK Financial is directly authorised and regulated by The Financial Conduct Authority.

SKQ issue 1

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