Managers & Executives - Mark & Sarah's Story 

“Carol’s given us the confidence and reassurance we needed to make a huge change – and continues to support us along the way.” 

I was introduced to Carol by my father and started working with her in 2014 on the issue of inheritance, before working with her on our own financial planning. 
 
My wife Sarah and I had decided to go for a complete lifestyle change based on early retirement and Carol was instrumental in helping us achieve that. 
 
Initially when you’re considering this sort of thing, you have all sorts of questions running through your head: can you afford to do it? When can you do it? Will you feel ok about it in the future? It’s a major exercise and quite a job to visualise let alone organise. 

My wife and I are both the same age and always wanted to retire at 60 

Sarah had held a number of administration and management roles and I’d worked as a General Manager for an agricultural company but what we wanted was a complete change. 
 
Our son and his family live in France and we wanted to buy a property there so we could spend lots of time with them. We also wanted to spend more time sailing, travelling and camping. 
 
We had a whole plan but needed to know we could afford to do it! 

That’s where Carol came in 

She looked at all of our finances and worked out what we’d need to do to realise our dream. It was a question of looking at our various pensions and leaving some where they were, but merging others. I had to look at whether to come out of my superannuation pension and put that in a different one or go into drawdown. 
 
There was also risk appetite assessment to do, to calculate what return we might be able to get on our investments. She used a number of digital tools to determine this and walked through all her calculations. Being able to see all of this gave us the comfort and confidence to go ahead with it – it was clear that we’d be able to afford to do it. 
 
We’ve now come full circle and we were ready in financial terms to start our dream, just as the world went into lockdown! 
Effective, patient, friendly 
I’ve worked with similar people before, whenever we’ve taken out mortgages or put money aside, but what’s different with Carol is that she takes a very holistic approach. It’s not just a one-off solution she’s giving you; she looks at things from every angle to find the best way. 
 
She did this with my father too - in particular she put a lot of effort into tying up my father’s affairs when he passed away, as the paperwork wasn’t all in order - she doesn’t give up! 
 
She’s also extremely patient. She takes time to explain things carefully but more importantly, she’s given us the confidence and reassurance we needed to make a huge change – and continues to support us along the way. 
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