5 Valuable Things The Queen Can Teach You About Good Financial Management
For seven decades, Queen Elizabeth II has been part of the fabric of British life. Her Majesty has seen more than 170 individuals serve as her realms' Prime Ministers during her reign and has travelled more than 1 million miles on official trips, visiting 106 countries.
On 6th June 2022, the Queen will become the first British monarch to celebrate a Platinum Jubilee. And when it comes to good financial management, there are lots we can learn from her 70-year reign.
1. Remain calm when times are tough
The list of world events the Queen has lived through would fill many history books. From the second world war to the Covid pandemic, she has seen international crises, war, recession, and natural disasters.
Despite the troubles she has faced – remember her own “annus horribilis”? – she has always remained steadfast and calm. It’s a great lesson for us all when our own finances start to look shaky.
When the government announced the first lockdown in 2020, the UK stock market fell sharply. At that time, it could have been easy to make a knee-jerk decision and exit the market.
However, those people who remained calm, and didn’t panic in a crisis, have been rewarded with subsequent growth. The FTSE 100 is now broadly at the same level it was before the pandemic hit, rewarding long-term, patient investors.
2. Plan for a long life
Life expectancies in the UK are rising. Office for National Statistics data shows that the average 55-year-old man will live to age 84, with a 10% chance of celebrating their 97th birthday.
The average 55-year-old woman can expect to live to age 87, with a 6.6% chance of receiving a telegram from the Queen on her 100th birthday.
What the Queen shows us is that it’s important to plan for a long life. Her Majesty conducted 332 official engagements in 2016 – not bad for someone already in their 90s!
When you think about your own retirement you might decide to keep working in some capacity to remain active. You might want to travel the world, dedicate time to mastering your hobbies or spend quality time with family.
Whatever you choose, it’s important to factor in that your pension and other assets might have to last you 20, 30 or even 40 years. Financial planning can be really beneficial here, as we can help you to ensure you don’t run out of money if you live as active and as long a life as the monarch.
3. Cash is outdated
Despite adorning the currency since the 1950s, the Queen has been way ahead of her time when it comes to cash.
Her Majesty famously never carries cash other than, as the Daily Mail revealed, to make a church donation on a Sunday.
In this regard, she has been ahead of the curve of a trend that has been accelerated by the pandemic. According to Unbiased, cash was used for just 17% of all payments in the UK in 2020, down from 56% a decade earlier.
In 2020, 13.7 million consumers joined the Queen by not using cash at all. Indeed, the Guardian reports that many shops and restaurants – including Prezzo, Pizza Hut, Itsu, and Côte Brasserie – now insist on card payments.
4. Have a trusted confidant
Since 1994, Angela Kelly has been one of the Queen’s closest aides. Officially the Personal Assistant, Adviser and Curator to Her Majesty the Queen (Jewellery, Insignias and Wardrobe), the 64-year-old has been at the Queen’s side for almost three decades.
Recent reports suggest that Kelly has moved into Windsor Castle, after spending much of the pandemic living with the monarch as part of “HMS Bubble”, helping Her Majesty with her day-to-day care.
Tatler reported that Kelly even gave the monarch a haircut during her lockdown stay when “usual protocol could not be followed”.
Having a trusted right-hand woman has worked for the Queen for 28 years. And, when it comes to your finances, a confidant and sounding board you can rely on can also be invaluable.
Working closely with a financial planner means you have someone looking out for your interests, counselling you on decisions, and helping you to achieve your life goals.
Indeed, a major report by insurer Royal London has revealed that people who work with a trusted financial planner feel more financially secure and stable, less anxious about their household finances, and more in control of their money. We've worked with many of our clients for decades, and we know this to be true.
5. Have an annual review without fail
Since 1952, and with the exception of 1969, the Queen has delivered an annual Christmas message. Originally on radio, the broadcast began on television in 1957 and, for millions of households, remains a 3pm staple on Christmas Day.
The regularity of this annual event is a comfort to many. Her Majesty is able to offer thanks and best wishes and often reflects on the events of the previous 12 months and how they have affected both the UK and the Commonwealth.
Sitting down with a financial planner for an annual review covers much of the same ground. It’s an opportunity to review the previous year, look at how things are going, and to make any changes necessary to your financial plan to keep you on track.
Without a regular meeting, it’s hard to know whether you’re still progressing towards your goals. So, take a leaf out of the Queen’s book, and make sure you put an annual review in your diary.
All of us here at Chesterton House send our warmest regards to Her Majesty on her Platinum Jubilee.
If it’s time for you to review your financial plan, or we can help you to achieve your financial goals, get in touch for a chat.
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