Your pension arrangement may be your most valuable financial asset.  The decisions you make about pensions are some of the most important decisions you are likely to make about your personal financial planning.

To guide you with decisions that will enhance your financial well being over the rest of your life and steer you from the pitfalls, the advisers at Johnston Financial offer you their wealth of knowledge in all aspects of pension planning gained through qualifications and years of hands on experience.  We can help you to use the tax benefits of pension plans in your overall financial planning.

When you are ready to take money out of your pension arrangements we can help you with that process too and show you the best way to do it.

A pension plan is simply a way to save for retirement with generous tax benefits that make pensions the most tax efficient way of saving for the later stages of your life.


Risk Warning

Certain investments carry a higher degree of risk than others and are, therefore, unsuitable for some investors. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future results. The value of investments, and the income from them, can go down as well as up and the you may not recover the amount of your initial investment. Where an investment involves exposure to a foreign currency, changes in rate exchange may cause the value of investments, and the income from it, to go up or down. Tax treatment depends on an investor’s individual circumstances and it may be subject to change.

Before contemplating any transaction, you should consult your financial adviser


Knowing you will have enough money to live the life you want to lead both now and in the future, is essentially what financial planning is all about.  Saving for your retirement is a priority.  If you are fortunate enough to be in a Defined Benefit pension scheme throughout your career, this is largely taken care of.  In any other circumstance, you only know if your pension saving is enough by valuing your existing pension arrangements, estimating what they will give you on retirement and deciding what you should contribute now and in the future.

If you would like to speak to Johnston Financial about your pension arrangements, please contact us by phone or use our Enquiry Form and we will respond directly to you.

Whilst the concept of pensions as a way of saving is a simple one, over the years, different types of pension arrangements have been created, often to respond to changes in legislation.

The expertise of Johnston Financial is available to you to guide you through the different types of pensions available and how to choose what is right for you.

If you would like to speak to Johnston Financial about a pension plan, please contact us by phone or use our Enquiry Form and we will respond directly to you.

Reviewing existing pensions is one area where both Government legislation and the rules of The Financial Conduct Authority make it difficult for you to act on your own behalf. In some circumstances, it is not possible for you as the owner of a pension plan to make a “pension transfer” without taking advice from an adviser with the required qualification.

The advisers at Johnston Financial have the necessary pension transfer qualification and are able to advise in this complex area.

Transfers from one personal pension plan or group personal pension plan to another are not normally so restricted, but transfers from an occupational pension scheme are. It may be that the first you know about this is when you approach your pension scheme or insurance company and they tell you that they will only do what you ask if an adviser certifies that they have given you advice and accept responsibility for the transfer.

If you would like to speak to Johnston Financial about reviewing your existing plans to ensure they continue to be suitable, please contact us by phone or use our Enquiry Form and we will respond directly to you.

In 2015, new pension freedoms were introduced. This removed the requirement to buy an annuity with your pension pot and allow you, once you are 55 or over, to access it in any amount or frequency you choose.  One quarter can be taken as a lump sum and the rest is taxed as income as it is withdrawn. There is also freedom on your death, to pass on your pension pot to your spouse, partner or children. This can be a useful part of your Inheritance Tax planning as, in most circumstances, there is no Inheritance Tax on pension pots passed down the generations.

These pension freedoms give you excellent financial planning opportunities but as ever carry some pitfalls, especially around tax. Johnston Financial can explain the freedoms and opportunities and help you to steer clear of the pitfalls.

If you would like to speak to Johnston Financial about new pensions freedom detail, please contact us by phone or use our Enquiry Form and we will respond directly to you.

The new Pension Freedoms have made it easier to draw your pensions in a way that specifically meets your needs. This means, of course, that there are now so many permutations of how and when you take:

  • your tax free cash sum
  • taxable one off payments
  • regular income

While this may seem complex, it really is an excellent opportunity to draw down from your pension pot in a way that meets your own plans for your retirement and is tax efficient. For instance, whilst you can take your tax free lump sum as a single payment, it can also be used as part of your regular income so that one quarter of each income payment is tax free.

If you would like to speak to Johnston Financial about drawing money from your pension pot, we will consider all your options and provide you with the right advice for your circumstances. Please contact us by phone or use our Enquiry Form and we will respond directly to you.

Whilst pension freedoms have transformed how you draw money from your pension pot, the Government has been keen to limit the amount of money that can be accumulated in pensions and benefit from the generous tax allowances. They have done this by creating two allowances.

The annual allowance is a limit on the amount that can be contributed to your pension each year, while still receiving tax relief. It’s based on your earnings for the year and is capped at £40,000.

The Lifetime Allowance is a limit on the amount of pension benefit that can be drawn from pension schemes – whether lump sums or retirement income – and can be paid without triggering an extra tax charge.  The test for the lifetime allowance is done each time you access a pension benefit.


If you would like to speak to Johnston Financial about how the Annual Allowance and Lifetime Allowance affect you, please contact us by phone or use our Enquiry Form and we will respond directly to you.

The State Pension is an important building block of your pension income in retirement and with the introduction of the New State Pension in 2016, it is a very good idea to obtain a State Pension forecast.  This is very easy to do online here

If you would like our help to do this, please contact us by phone or use our Enquiry Form and we will respond directly to you.

The Pension Advisory Service provide useful information on the State Pension and it can be found here.


Johnston Financial is your financial planning home.  Whatever your financial planning or investment need Johnston Financial can help you to find the answer.


Your Peace of Mind may come from organising your financial affairs.  It may come from knowing that you have provided for your family should catastrophe strike such as death or long term illness. It may come from knowing that you will have the money to be in a position to stop work when you want to. Or, it may be all of those and more. Helping you to achieve that Peace of Mind is what Johnston Financial is all about.


The starting point of your relationship with Johnston Financial will be a process in which you tell us about your self. We will build a picture of your financial situation, understanding your income, assets, debts, pensions, savings and investments.  We will ask about future financial expectations and spending. We will understand how Income Tax, Capital Gains Tax and Inheritance Tax could affect you. As your partner in planning your financial future we will seek to build a complete understanding of your financial situation.


As someone once said, “life is not a dress rehearsal”. You are here once and will have plans, dreams and ambitions that you would like to fulfil. These will have financial implications form which you derive your “financial goals”. Johnston Financial will use their knowledge of your financial situation to develop with you a plan to meet your financial goals. This is your roadmap, one that we will keep updated with you as time goes on, taking account of changes to your financial position, responsibilities and goals.


When you work with Johnston Financial, you are working with financial planners working at the highest levels of professional ability. Our advisers are not only qualified to the standard required by the Financial Conduct Authority, but hold the highest level of professional qualifications as either Certified or Chartered Financial Planners. Johnston Financial holds the Chartered Financial Planners certification.

Qualifications are the start but it is often experience that counts at the end of the day. Our advisers have decades of individual experience in their areas of responsibilities with a perspective and understanding of issues that only that experience can give.