My deposit for a flat is shrinking in my Stocks & Shares Lifetime ISA - what can I do?


"I am a very small investor and to be quite honest I don't understand enough about the markets or how to proceed. I use robo platforms. My LISA requires attention - it needs filling for this tax year and ideally again early in the new tax year in order to gain the government bonus in time to buy a flat (also uncertain!). However, as I optimistically opened a S&S LISA rather than a cash ISA, my deposit is shrinking."


People under 40 can get a Lifetime ISA to save for a first property or for retirement. The benefit is that the Government will contribute a 25% bonus on money up to £4,000a year that you pay in. You’ve got to be sure it’s long-term though – there are penalties for early access or if you take the money out for anything else.

We all have an annual allowance of £20,000 for ISAs – whether cash, lifetime ISAs or stocks & shares ISAs. And the end of the tax year is 5th April. So you have until then to use it – or lose it.

Markets are nerve wracking at the moment. I get that. I’ve seen quite a few crashes – and recoveries – so I know it will all come back. But the downwards bit is always a test.

What lots of people don’t know is that you can have a stocks and shares ISA or a Lifetime ISA and still pay in as cash. It can sit in that account – as odd as it might sound – as cash, you get to use your annual allowance (or part of it) and you don’t have to decide right now what to invest in. The point is you only have till 5th April to make that contribution into these lovely tax efficient accounts – and get the Brucie bonus from the Government in the Lifetime ISA.

What’s not clear to me is your timeframes for buying. If they are coming up – in the next couple of years – then I would leave the money in cash. Get your 25% Government contribution – that’s not a bad return – but investing in in the stock market over such a short timeframe is playing with fire. You mention you’re in a robo – if that’s Nutmeg, you can still pay in to this account but select the cash pot.

Good luck.



New question answered daily

• Send your question to

• Holly will pick a new question to answer every day

• New videos posted here and on Instagram and Facebook

Want to know more?

Keep Calm Webinars - banner.png

Holly provides straightforward answers to your investing questions | New videos posted every day

Stock market meltdown: straight-talking answers to difficult questions


Holly's Blog: Bears, germs and dead cats

Wow. That was a brutal week. Yes, it's ****ing scary. But let's look at some stock market facts and reasons to be cheerful.

Bears, germs and dead cats

Sign up to Holly's Blog

Join the thousands of people who get our weekly musings on money, great products, top tips and a dollop of opinion. 

Sign up to Holly's Blog


Daniel Rose
This is why I'm not buying a home! The mole people had it right
25/03/2020 14:23:31
0 0

Leave Comment

Related Questions

Got a Question?

Sign up for Holly's blog

Stay up to date

Our free weekly blog with Holly's
no-nonsense opinions, tips & food for thought.
If you change your mind, you can unsubscribe at any time. We'll never share your details and you can unsubscribe any time.