nutmeg

 

 

I have never been in such a settled and positive financial position. Which, bearing in mind I’m technically ‘skint’, might seem like a funny thing to say. But because I’ve been single for three years, it has forced me to address my financial position head on and make sure that I know where every last penny of my well earned money goes. I’ve dealt with ‘issues’ my ex has left me and I’m heading in the right direction.

 

Yes, I’m still driving Blue Lightning with its duct taped window, but I am looking to the future … and it’s looking ever so slightly bright. I’m about to move into a new, albeit rented, house and I cannot begin to tell you how excited we are! It’s stability, security and even though it’s not in Yorkshire (or Australia!) where I really want to be, I can make this a home for us.

 

But renting always makes me wonder whether I should give serious thought to buying my own house again. I think we’re so entrenched in the mindset of  ‘A King and his castle’ mentality in the UK that owning your own home has always seemed to be the pinnacle of an adult’s life. I wonder whether I’m judged for having to start again at 44 (not that I care mind you), but everyone else just seems to have their act together, and I feel like a 20 year old starting out again.

 

One thing I do want to do this year, once we’re settled, is think about putting a little bit of money aside each month. I originally thought it would be for a deposit on a house then soon realised that it would take me 30 years to get a decent deposit together … by which time I will have hopefully retired! (Mind you, I also don’t have a pension!) So maybe the money could just go towards making my home even lovelier, or, and this is an even better idea, going on a long holiday!

 

As much as traditional banking has its place, I like hearing about new schemes/products that can offer an alternative. For example, when I didn’t have a current account, I used an online only bank and a ‘top-up’ Visa card that worked brilliantly – I knew exactly how much money I had and could never overspend, so when I was introduced to Nutmeg.com, I thought I’d have a look around and report on what I though, whether I though it could work for me, and whether I felt it was worth recommending.

 

So what is Nutmeg.com?

It is a portfolio management service – the UK’s first online discretionary investment management company. Fully regulated by the FCA and endorsed by the UK Government. It invests your money for you. You choose how much you want to invest, how long for and what level risk you’re prepared to take.

 

How does it work?

 

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You can create as many funds as you like. And you can top up, transfer or withdraw whenever you like. You can start with as little as £1,000 per fund (plus minimum monthly contributions of £50 for portfolios below £5,000) and set up as many funds as you like – whether it’s investing for your children’s future or saving for a new home – each with their own timeframes and risk appetites. As you can see from the image above, I’ve provisionally signed up to invest £1,000 over a year, saving £50 a month on a low risk basis. (I don’t actually have £50 a month to save yet … but you know, it’s good to plan ahead!)

 

Is there a minimum investment?

 

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Yes – minimum is £1,000 per fund you create. If you’re investment below £5,000, they also ask for a £50 per month contribution. You can add and withdraw money whenever you like.

 

Can I transfer money from other places?

Yes. If you open a Nutmeg ISA, or start a Nutmeg personal pension (min investment £5,000) you can transfer your ISAs and personal pension pots from other providers.

 

Does Nutmeg make investment decisions for me?

 

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No, it gives you suggestions on how to invest your money. The other ways you can invest your money are either by doing it yourself (time-consuming and you’ll incur trading/commission charges), or you could hire your own personal stockbroker, which is often costly. There is a comparison of each of these on the Nutmeg site once you’ve initially signed up.

 

Am I promised a 100% guaranteed return on my money?

Like any investment, a 100% return can’t be guaranteed, but it’s worth discussing this further with Nutmeg so you feel comfortable with what they’re offering.

 

Will I be locked in?

Absolutely not. You can withdraw whenever you like and there’s no minimum investment period.

 

Where will my money be held? How safe is it?

Nutmeg never actually handles your money. They partner with a custodian bank (Pershing Securities Ltd) and it’s their responsibility to safeguard your assets, process your payments to and from Nutmeg and carry out the trades you authorise.

 

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Is it easy to withdraw my money or cancel my investment?

You can request all or part of your money back at any time. Withdrawals are free if you’re not in a rush, but there are standard charges if you are. I think it’s wise to check this point out with Nutmeg before you invest, so that you know what these charges are. You must remember, however, that all investments are subject to market risk so you may not get back the sum you invested.

 

What are Nutmeg’s fees?

They charge one management fee starting at 1% and going as low as 0.3% (including VAT). No trading or commission fees and no hidden charges.

 

I’ve tried to answer all the questions I would have if (and when) I were to invest but if I’ve missed anything out it might be worth just giving them a quick call. But if you’re looking for a new way to invest your savings, why not take a look at Nutmeg. It might be just what you’re looking for.

 

 

 

 

 * This post is in collaboration with Nutmeg – all views are my own.

 

 

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