From switching current accounts to seeking out dividend-paying funds, Moneywise rounds up 50 top tips to boost your income by making your savings work harder for you.
Here are four ways to boost your savings by keeping on top of your investments. See the our guide 50 ways to boost your savings income for the rest.
37. Review your investments regularly
It doesn’t make sense to obsess over your investments – you’ll only stress over every market wobble. However, you shouldn’t go to the opposite extreme and ignore your investments either. Review your portfolio once a year (or twice if you’re approaching retirement) to check your investments are on target and still reflect your attitude to risk. If a fund is underperforming, try to find out why, and if it has underperformed its peers for a consistent period of time you may want to switch.
38. Watch out for ‘dog funds’
Online platform BestInvest regularly monitors funds that consistently underperform in its ‘Spot the Dog’ research. This year, 26 funds with total holdings worth £6.4 billion were named and shamed. To get this tag, a fund needs to have underperformed its market for three consecutive years and by more than 5% in that period. Current dogs include Neptune Global Income and UBS Global Enhanced Income, as well as Aberdeen Standard’s UK Equity and UK Equity Income funds. At the other end of the spectrum, BestInvest tipped some ‘Pedigree Picks’ including Liontrust Special Situations – a Moneywise First 50 fund – and LF Lindsell Train UK Equity Income, which achieved returns of 16% and 13% over their benchmarks respectively.
39. Reap the benefits of paying for advice
Financial advice is not cheap – broadly speaking you can expect to pay between 1% and 2% of the assets you’re investing. However, a good independent financial adviser should be able to recoup those costs with better, risk-controlled performance, guidance on contribution levels and tax-planning strategies. In 2017, research from the International Longevity Centre found that affluent individuals who seek advice end up around £43,000 better off than those that don’t. Less wealthy individuals who sought advice were £39,000 better off.
40. Check you are paying the correct rate of tax
There are many reasons why you end up paying the wrong amount of tax – you may have just started a new job or made a withdrawal from your pension and paid an emergency rate of tax. It may be that you have more than one job or are a retiree with more than one pension. The self-employed can easily get caught out too – particularly if you have a change of circumstances. There may just have been an administration error with your tax code. Whatever your situation, it pays to check if you are concerned – either with your employer or by calling the HMRC tax helpline on 0300 200 3300. If there has been a mistake a refund will be arranged. Find out more at Gov.uk/tax-codes.