The financial advice I wish I’d been given

Ever wish you could go back in time and give yourself advice? Here are five financial tips you can’t afford to miss.


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What’s the one piece of financial advice you wish you’d been given when you were younger?

David Penny, independent financial adviser, Invest Southwest: “The advice I would give my younger self is to read the press. Every Sunday, get a quality newspaper, and just for read for pleasure about finance. The things you pick up are so diverse and so wide, it will always stand you in good stead.”

Dennis Hall, independent financial adviser, Yellowtail Financial Planning: “All the time I think people don’t plan long enough. They think they’re going to die perhaps a lot sooner than they will, so they don’t invest early enough, or as much as they should, for what is likely to be a long time not earning money, but spending what they’ve been able to save.”

Claire Walsh, independent financial adviser, Pavilion Financial Services: “I wish I’d been told about the tax benefits of pensions, and about how important it is to save for retirement and why that’s a good idea. I used to work for a big corporate company and they would have matched my contributions, but at that time I didn’t know much about pensions and I just thought: ‘I’m in my early twenties, retirement seems like an awful long time away and I’d rather have the money and spend it now.’ Now as a financial adviser I realise how much money I missed out on.”

Chris Daems, independent financial adviser, Principal Financial Solutions: “The one piece of financial advice I wish I had when I was 18 was start small but save regularly, because the power of doing that is incredible. What a lot of people do is assume they need to be in a good financial position before they start to save for their financial future. But if you start early and you start small, it’s the most powerful thing you can do.”

Annie Shaw, freelance finance journalist: “My granny’s advice was never depend on a man for your money! That’s worked out for me. Fortunately no divorce yet, touch wood, hope my husband hasn’t got any plans! But I have seen so many women who have not had their own financial planning, who have not saved for their own pension or perhaps been the victims of a divorce and have come off badly. So I say to any woman, or any young person in fact, do have your own financial plan.”