The ‘last financial taboo’? The wealthy are more likely to discuss inheritance with a financial adviser than with their own partner or children
- Nine in ten have made at least some plans for passing on their wealth
- Among Britons with £250k-plus assets, 36% had talked to their partner about it
- However, 38% had discussed plans with a financial adviser
- Need financial advice? Find an adviser with our partner Flying Colours
Wealthy people are more likely to discuss their inheritance with a financial adviser than with their families, according to a study.
The inaugural Saltus Wealth Index surveyed more than 1,000 people in the UK with investable assets of more than £250,000.
Investable assets include things like cash, funds in bank accounts, stocks, bonds, certificates of deposit and insurance contracts with cash value, but not properties.
It found that while nine in ten had made some form of plan for passing on their wealth, most had not relayed these plans to their family.
Most wealthy people do not discuss their inheritance plans with their families. In fact, a slightly higher proportion have consulted a financial adviser, according to a new survey.
Only 36 per cent claimed to have shared their plans for passing on wealth with their partner.
This was slightly less than the 38 per cent who said they had discussed them with a financial adviser.
And while more than four in five of those over 65 had made a will, only 28 per cent of that age group had discussed their inheritance with their children.
Reena Mistry, financial advisor at Flying Colours said: ‘Talking about money and wealth remains one of the last remaining taboos in society, and so the study does not surprise me.
‘People find it easier to speak to someone who is unrelated to them, like a financial adviser, as they can offer an unbiased view, free of judgement.
People find it easier to speak to someone who is unrelated to them, like a financial adviser, as they can offer an unbiased view, free of judgement
Reena Mistry, financial adviser at Flying Colours
‘Money can be an emotive subject when speaking to loved ones, and so speaking to a financial adviser may seem easier.’
The survey also looked at how many of those with more than £250,000 in investable assets had made a will.
Although the majority of over-65s had made a will, less than than half (45 per cent) of respondents overall had done so.
Mistry adds: ‘A will not only ensures your wealth is distributed according to your wishes, it also makes the administration of your estate easier once you pass away, and dying without a Will means your estate may not pass to those you want.
‘If you have property or money – no matter the value – that would need to be distributed on your death, then you need to make a will.
Some wealthy parents may not wish to tell their children about their inheritance because they believe it will make them less motivated to succeed in life, according to a financial adviser
She adds: ‘It is also important for parents of young children to make a will as they can appoint a guardian to look after their children should both parents die.
‘Without a will, the courts would appoint a guardian for minor children, and they may not be your first choice.’
The study also found that whilst over-65s were the most likely to have a will in place, they were the least inclined to share their plans with their children.
Mistry says: ‘Parents may not want their children to know the amount of inheritance they may receive as they may fear that their children may lose motivation to be successful and productive on their own, and they may miss out on the life skills working and managing your finances brings.’
However, being open with your family about their inheritance may also help them to make better-informed financial decisions.
‘For many people, their financial goals may centre around their family – for example being able to give their children some money for a deposit towards their first home, or grandparents wanting to pay for their grandchildren’s school fees,’ says Mistry.
‘Speaking to your partner or family about this allows them to plan their finances better, and it also gives you an understanding of what their financial goals and aims may be and whether the money you intend to leave or gift them aligns with this.
‘Additionally, speaking to a partner or family about wealth means you can make sure all tax allowances are used and that your money is invested in a tax efficient manner.’