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Answers to YOUR Questions

See what's bugging others. 

And what our experts say.

I have cash ISA that is maturing next week. Can I transfer a cash ISA to a Stocks and Shares ISA with another provider? Will I still keep my £20,000 annual allowances for Stocks and Shares ISA?

Shreekant , UK

18 October 2020

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Anna Stoughton

Hi Shreekant! Yes, you can transfer your cash ISA into a Stocks and Shares ISA and keep this year’s 2020/2021 ISA allowance provided that the cash ISA is from a previous tax year. Not all ISA providers have to allow “transfers in” however. If the cash ISA is maturing from a previous tax year then you can choose how much you wish to transfer into a S&S ISA. To confirm, if you withdraw the funds from your matured cash ISA this year and then invest into a S&S ISA, you will lose the allowance – it must be a transfer.

Please note that you cannot open two different ISAs that are of the same type in the same tax year (tax years run April to April). For example, opening two Stocks & Shares ISAs in the same year is a “no no”! You can however open a Stocks & Shares ISA and a Cash ISA within this tax year and split your £20k ISA allowance between the two, for example, invest £15k into a Stocks & Shares ISA and £5k into a Cash ISA.

With ISAs it’s a “use it or lose it” policy. If you don’t fully utilise your £20,000 this year, it’s not rolled over to the next. Take a peruse through our Best Buy table here to see which provider may be best for you. Hope that helps clear up your ISA situation!


Just be aware...

We are not regulated to give personal financial advice - This isn’t full-fat regulated financial advice. Boring Money is a publisher and not regulated by the FCA. 

This means we can't help with specific personal circumstances or recommend specific investment products. It also basically means that if we say something daft, you have no recourse to come back and complain.

We’re only allowed to give you a steer or share an opinion or tell you the facts - That said, we promise that our answer to you is an independent unbiased perspective with no commercial gain to make. If you need regulated financial advice, you can find a good adviser via sites such as Unbiased & Vouchedfor.

I currently have my children's Stocks & Shares ISA's with H&L however I am not that savvy with investing so I am thinking of moving it over to Wealth Simple and allowing them to do it for me. Would you recommend this or are there other roboadvisors you would suggest? I am happy to leave the money in long term until they are about 18 so looking at an 'ambitious' risk. I also have the same account with H&L and will potentially swap also.

Funmi, LDN

12 October 2020

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Holly Mackay

Fidelity has recently announed no fees on Junior ISAs - they also have ready-made investment options. If you want to keep it super simple I would look at Nutmeg, Wealthify or Wealthsimple - you can read more about them on our Best Buys pages. 

Hi Holly, thanks for the guide on how to save for retirement. A key question for me and my fifties friends is, how much retirement income do we need (aka when can we afford to retire?) We’ve found the PLSA-suggested ‘retirement living standards’. What do you think of them?

Rory, Ham

28 August 2020

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Susie Bewell

“How much will I need to retire” is a question asked of us frequently but understanding how much you need to save to retire is difficult to define as not everyone is the same. It is often only when you are nearing retirement that you would really understand what your income needs will be and often that may be too late to plan. For an investor in their thirties, understanding what income needs will be at age 68 is almost impossible to imagine.

Fortunately, over the years, experts have devised useful rules of thumbs to follow to help us on our way to successful retirement planning. Most experts suggest that you will need 70-80% of your pre-retirement income after you retire. It is assumed that mortgages, debts and dependents are a thing of the past, leaving you with lower expenses.

I think the PLSA Retirement Living Standards do really well to capture what different incomes in retirement would cover, all the way down to what holidays or gifts for members of the family might look like. I particularly liked the examples given that highlight costs you might not have thought of – help with maintenance around the house, for example.       

Of course everyone if different, but this is a nice way to get you thinking about what could be important to you, and put some “meat on the bones” of your plan.

Hi Boring Money, My question was about a man offering a 22.2% average return on his stock picking ability. His name is Chris Chillingworth, this is his promo video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WSbBJ6ttgL0 and here is his rather pricey monthly stock picking service: https://thecleantrader.com/stockpicker/ I've tried to find reviews of his services but cannot find them anywhere except on a really old forum of his older product 'Spreedbet Beginner' where people have said they are blocked pretty swiftly on Twitter etc if they raise an issue. He's given me previous stocks such as Sage plc as a sample of his ability to pick good stocks, but I thought after our contact he could easily look back at history and say he owned one of these stocks. I just don't want to squander £20 - £57 per month on someone that will provide me inferior stock picks and I could do better just managing my own portfolio. What is even more odd is that he cannot be found on Companies House which rang alarm bells a little as even if he has his money in an ISA surely he must have to file for sales of his books, courses and stock picks? Obviously, like any investor I want the best return for my money but I don't want it to be spent on stock picks that may be useless in the next few years because I've been duped into thinking he can provide above average returns. 22.2% is a phenomenal average return so I'm not sure what to do. I guess I do have a little bit of FOMO as it could be legitimate, but it also may be a well crafted marketing ploy. I would like your opinion on this matter as I have no idea what I should do. Kind Regards, Max

Max, Lincolnshire

27 August 2020

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Hi Max

With no disrespect to the man you mention who I do not know personally, this sounds like a really really bad idea. It’s like me saying that it will be sunny next year for an average of 4.5 hours a day. I could give the logos of every FTSE100 company to my cat and she could pick the winners  - the skill is doing this day in and day out for years – anyone can get lucky over the short term. I never trust anyone who says they can pick winners all the time or make x% a year.

The boring truth is that investing is not alchemy or picking winners all the time – it’s balancing the risk, spreading your bets around different markets, sectors and regions – and being happy with annual returns of about 5% - 6% a year if you invest in shares over the long-term. Shares should do better than cash but you won’t always pick the next Amazon. I think you need to stop expecting to make more than that or you’ll get stuck in a loop of chasing returns which are not sustainable.

I would stick to funds not shares – these are collections of shares which minimise the risk of anyone thing going belly up. Be honest about your timeframes – if it’s less than 5 years then shares are a bit too risky. If it’s 10 years + you can be more spicy. Have a look at our Best Buys tables for  an investment platform you like the sound of. Look at their fund lists or Best Buy lists. Pick a mix of global funds which are diversified. As a guide, I think most people should have between about 8 and 20 funds depending on how much you have.

These are all generic statements – I don’t know your full financial circumstances eg do you have expensive debt you should be paying off first? Do you have a pension? Have you got a cash buffer of about 6 months’ income to protect you from financial shocks? Etc But I do know that anyone claiming 22.2% returns on average is deluding themselves about their capabilities. I also know that anyone involved in Spread Betting is someone I would run a mile from

Good luck,


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