Festive Opening Times

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We’d like to take this opportunity to thank our clients, staff and friends for their tremendous support this year and wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

We’re closing the office at 4pm on Friday 23rd December and are returning to work on Wednesday 4th January 2017, but don’t forget we can be contacted via our Facebook page for anything urgent during this time.

Protecting your home from the winter weather

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The last couple of weeks have seen plunging temperatures and even snowfall in some parts of the UK. This last week alone has seen a cold snap that has brought sub-zero temperatures.

With the colder weather also brings the threat of frozen pipes. In 2014 the Association of British Insurers (ABI) reported the average claim for a burst water pipe is between £6500 and £7500.

Now is a good time to make sure that your have taken steps to ensure that your home is as protected as possible against any damage that could be caused by the cold weather so that you don’t have to make a claim. The ABI said “Every winter, freezing temperatures catch people out. Prevention is better than cure and now is the time to take a few simple steps to reduce the risk of facing the trauma of frozen or burst pipes this winter.”

Here are some useful hints to help protect your home:

COLD WEATHER CODE
◾Check that the heating in your property is in good working order, and if you have an open fire, whether the chimney should be swept.
◾Check your loft insulation is the recommended dimensions and still in good condition.
◾Repair any dripping taps and leaking radiator valves.
◾Repair loose roof tiles and slates to reduce the risk of them falling off and check and clear your gutters.
◾Check windows and window frames are firmly fixed and with no possible gaps for rain to penetrate.

HOW TO PREVENT DAMAGE FROM BURST PIPES.
◾Insulate water tank and pipes wherever possible. Look at lagging pipes to conserve heat too and take care if they’re outside or in the loft.
◾Make sure you know where your stop tap is so that you can quickly switch the water off if a pipe bursts.

HOLIDAYS AND WEEKEND BREAKS.
◾If you’re away visiting family or friends or off on holiday, we recommend keeping your heating on low, just in case the temperature should drop
◾If you do leave your heating on, open your loft hatch so that warm air can get to your pipes.
◾If you don’t want to leave your heating on, drain the whole system and turn water off at the mains.
◾Get a friend, relative or neighbour to keep an eye on your property every day.

Always be cautious when undertaking any DIY task that you aren’t familiar with as you could injure yourself or those around you. Seek professional help where required.

If you have a mortgage or rent a property you are obliged to prevent loss or damage and to keep the property in sound condition and good repair.

If your home insurance is due soon please give us a call and we can see if we can beat your renewal quote. Contact Phil Anderson Financial Services on 01224 900879.

Ellon Christmas Lights Sponsorship

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Phil Anderson Financial Services is delighted to spread some festive cheer among the local community by donating a dream holiday to Lapland. We have donated the prize trip to Ellon’s Christmas Lights Day, which takes place on Saturday 19 November, after it was announced that the previously cancelled event had been rescued by a local charity.

Phil Anderson, managing director of Phil Anderson Financial Services, annually donates to the Ellon Community Council (who previously ran the event), but made the decision to donate the once-in-a-lifetime holiday, and lift the spirits of the local community, after discovering that the Ellon Christmas Lights Day was back on.

The prize holiday will be up for grabs to everyone who purchases raffle tickets on the day of the event. One lucky winner will receive accommodation and return flights to Lapland for up to four people, as well as £500 spending money.

The popular light switch-on event, taking place in Neil Ross Square in Ellon, has recently been taken over by Ellon Events and will include fairground rides, a Santa’s Grotto, market stalls and a fireworks display.

Phil Anderson said: “I was thrilled to hear that the Ellon Christmas Lights Day was back on, as it’s such a important event in the town’s Christmas calendar. As Christmas is a time for giving, I wanted to donate something big that would help bring back festive cheer amongst residents and I think providing a chance to meet the real Santa will do just that.

“Both my team and I believe that giving back to the local community is of the upmost importance, so I’m proud to be involved with an event that means so much to so many people. We’re all thoroughly looking forward to the day and finding out who will win the holiday of a lifetime.”

Wayne Baber, chairman at Ellon Events, said: “We are extremely appreciative of Phil and his team donating the holiday to Lapland. Phil has always been extremely generous when it comes to donations for the Christmas Lights Day, but this year he has truly gone out of his way to help the community by providing this incredible trip.

“Christmas spirit will be very evident at this year’s event, as it’s down to the support of local people and businesses that we’ve managed to get it up and running again. We’re hoping for a big turnout to celebrate the beginning of the festive season in the area.”

Small Business Big Heart

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Phil Anderson Financial Services has been recognised for its continuous support of non-profit-making organisations in the North-east having been awarded as the regional winner of the Small Business Big Heart Award for Aberdeen.

The accolade, which recognises small businesses across the UK that go to great efforts to support their local communities, was presented to Phil Anderson, managing director of Phil Anderson Financial Services, by Scott Baxter, deputy chief executive of Aberdeen Cyrenians, for the company’s dedication to helping local causes.

The financial services company, which specialises in mortgages, investments and pensions, donates £10 to Aberdeen Cyrenians every time one of its clients sets up a mortgage. The initiative has raised a total of £1710 for the charity so far this year, which helps to support homeless and vulnerable people in the area.

As well as this, Phil Anderson Financial Services supports numerous sports and social clubs in Aberdeen, Ellon and Oldmeldrum and regularly donates raffle prizes to nearby schools and charities. Through its sponsorship of the Oldmeldrum Charity Golf Open Day, the firm was able to select Diabetes UK as a beneficiary.

Rufus Bazley, marketing director at BusinessesForSale.com, the organiser of the Small Business Big Heart campaign, said:

“We were very impressed with the charitable efforts of Phil Anderson Financial Services, as it’s evident that the entire team are committed to creating a positive impact for the area through donations and participating in fundraising activities.

“It’s very inspiring to see a small business so involved with its local community and we can only hope that it encourages other SMEs across the UK to regularly support causes in their area.”

Phil Anderson, managing director of Phil Anderson Financial Services Ltd, said:

“It is an honour to receive the Small Business Big Heart award, as supporting local, worthwhile causes means a lot to me and the team.

“My staff often participate in fundraising events and I support this by giving them the time off work. I also like to take part and raise money for charity, this year was the third year that I’ve swam 22-miles to raise money for Diabetes UK and Aspire.

“Not all companies are in the position to hand out big cheques all the time, but it doesn’t need to be about large gestures. We’re able to do our bit through a number of small activities that will help those local to us.”

Scott Baxter, deputy chief executive of Aberdeen Cyrenians, said:

“We are very appreciative of Phil’s ongoing support, as all the money raised by the company goes towards our frontline services, which have experienced a significant increase in demand over the last 12 months.

“As well as this, we are all well aware of his amazing efforts for other causes across the North-east, so the award is extremely well deserved.”

Buy North East

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We are delighted to show our support for the region by pledging our support to the Buy North East campaign. The Buy North East campaign aims to get local procurement on the business agenda in the region. At a time when many businesses and individuals are feeling the impact of the oil and gas downturn, it is more important than ever that we collectively do all we can to help the regional economy, and protect and create jobs in the area. Further information can be found at http://www.buynortheast.co.uk/

New Addition To The Team

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Phil Anderson Financial Services has added to its team and its geographical reach by appointing a new financial advisor.

Nigel Anderson, 53, has joined us, to manage clients in Deeside and west Aberdeenshire.

Mr Anderson has more than thirty years experience in financial services and joins the team following a fifteen-year career as an independent financial advisor, working across the North-east for businesses in Aberdeen and Fraserburgh.

His skills and expertise will be a superb addition to the business and increasing the team to nine.

Mr Anderson said: “I have been advising families across the North-east on how to financially protect themselves for many years and, therefore, bring a strong client base to Phil Anderson Financial Services. I specialise in lower risk and cost solutions supporting people to manage their future financial hopes and aspirations so it’s a great fit with the current team of experts in the business.”

Phil Anderson added: “We are continuing to increase the team so we can keep providing a personal, face-to-face service to our clients who are spread across the North-east and the Highlands. With Nigel joining the team, it allows us to help grow our client base in Deeside and west Aberdeenshire and his vast experience will be a huge benefit, not just to our clients, but to the business as a whole.”

Is your life insurance policy written in trust?

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Is your life insurance policy written in trust?…If not, then watch out for inheritance tax.

When people buy and arrange life insurance cover from an online provider, they may not realise the importance of making sure the policy is written in trust.

The insurance policy is often taken out with the best of intentions, typically to protect the financial security of children, but some policyholders have no idea that by not completing a trust form, their beneficiaries may have to pay inheritance tax charged at 40% on the money received.

A trust is a simple legal arrangement that allows you to gift your life insurance policy to someone else (the beneficiary). In the event of a claim being made, a policy which is written in trust will pay out the sum assured directly to your Trustees who in turn will distribute it in accordance with the terms of the trust – which could simply be to pass the proceeds to your beneficiaries. If the life insurance policy is not written in trust, then the money is added to your total estate and will be taken into account when inheritance tax is calculated.

For those who hold more than one property, or live in areas where house prices have significantly climbed in recent years, and assuming they are relatively debt-free, then it is highly likely that inheritance tax will have to be paid. Inheritance tax is payable when the value of a person’s estate exceeds a certain amount when they die, and so would include your house and any life insurance money paid out not written in trust. Everyone has an inheritance tax allowance, known as the nil rate band, which means that no inheritance tax is paid on any assets totalling up to £325,000.

But for people whose assets are above this threshold, or could be in the future, the value of their estate above the allowance will be taxed at 40%, and a life insurance policy which is written in trust will be beneficial.

We don’t expect to see any changes to the £325,000 allowance before 2020, but George Osborne did reveal in July 2015’s Summer Budget that he was taking the family home out of inheritance tax for all but the wealthiest; introducing a new tax-free additional ‘main residence’ band which is being phased in starting at £100,000 in 2017 and increases to £175,000 in 2020. This however is only valid on a main residence and where the recipient of a home is a direct descendant, which means children, step-children and grandchildren. However where your estate is worth more than £2,000,000 the extra allowance is not available.

There are different types of trust policies that you can put in place. Which one you choose will depend on your needs and circumstances. Discretionary trusts often provide lots of flexibility, so you can change who will benefit from the policy in the future. This means for a growing family, where more than one child or grandchild arrives, new family members are automatically added in. If you have a critical illness policy or terminal illness cover then a ‘split trust’ can be put in place to allow the policy holder to benefit, whilst any death benefit payment is passed onto the beneficiaries whilst remaining in the protective tax wrapper of the trust. These are just some of the trust options to consider.

Choosing a trustee for your life insurance policy is an important decision and should be carefully considered. The trustees you appoint become the legal owners of the policy. They inform the insurance company of your death, and they ensure the money paid is passed on to your beneficiaries. People often choose a family member or a friend, but others instruct a professional such as solicitor or accountant for this role. Typically, two trustees are selected and these people should have the beneficiary’s best interests at heart. The policy holder is also automatically made a trustee. You can change your selected trustees in the future if you wish.

Most life policies can be set up in trust. If you already have a life insurance policy, you can elect to place it in a trust thereby shielding the proceeds from any inheritance tax liability. Once a policy is written in trust it can’t be amended or cancelled without the Trustees permission and so it is important that you seek financial advice before making changes to your existing insurance arrangements. Speak to your financial adviser for help, or if you don’t have an appointed adviser, get in touch with us at admin@philandersonfinancial.co.uk, we’d be delighted to help.

Breakneck Comedy Sponsorship

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Phil Anderson Financial Services are delighted to be helping to bring Breakneck Comedy back to Ellon. We are the main sponsors for the next Ellon Comedy Night which is due to take place at the Victoria Hall, Ellon on Saturday 13th August 2016. The headline act is Lateef Lovejoy and he will be joined by several if the UK’s top comedians. Doors open at 8pm with the show starting at 8.30pm and tickets are available from our Ellon office at 8 Bridge Street, Ellon or online at www.breakneckcomedy.co.uk

Buchan Bowling Association Sponsorship

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Phil Anderson Financial Services are delighted to sponsor the Buchan Bowling Association team for the 2016 season. The sponsorship of over £1,000 means that the county team will have new shirts for the 2016 Cities & Counties championship. On the green the players made a good start to this years Cities & Counties championship with a 143-126 victory against City of Dundee at Ellon Bowling Club on Saturday. Prior to the match Phil presented the team with new shirts.

Buchan Bowling Association President Bill Gowans said “It was great to see the lads kitted out in their new shirts on Saturday. Finding sponsors in the current economic environment is not easy in the north-east and we are delighted with the support we are getting from Phil Anderson Financial Services. It was great to start the season with a win and hopefully we can keep it going when we play Perthshire next weekend.” Commenting after the match Phil Anderson said “Over the years we have had many bowlers come to us for advice on mortgages, pensions and investments. It’s nice to be able to put something back in to the sport and I congratulate Buchan on their fine victory against Dundee at Ellon. We also support the Ellon Super Six competition and are the main sponsors of the Whitehall Invitation Pairs which takes place in August. It’s great to be able to support our local bowlers and the Buchan Bowling Association. The new shirts look excellent and I wish them all the best for the season ahead.”

Elevator Award Finalists

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Elevator Award Finalists

We are celebrating after the recent announcement of the shortlist for this year’s Elevator Awards. Phil Anderson Financial Services has been nominated in the Employer of the Year category. Phil Anderson, Managing Director said “I am absolutely delighted that we have made the final three in this award category. Our staff are all very hard working and I am a firm believer that if we look after our staff they will then look after our clients. We work hard to recognise the hard work and achievements of our team and make Phil Anderson Financial Services a great place to work.”

The Elevator Awards, which are in their 17th year, celebrate North-east business excellence, entrepreneurial behaviour and outstanding community contributions. This year’s finalists represent a range of up-and-coming businesses, innovative organisations and firms from sectors including energy, technology, financial services, leisure, food and drink, beauty and professional services. The winners, including an entrepreneur of the year, will be announced at a black tie ceremony at Ardoe House Hotel in Aberdeen, on Thursday, June 30.