Real Stories

It’s About Time

retiring couple sat on sofa inside joslin rhodes office

Helping Gary and Michelle PLAN HAPPY

Gary and Michelle had been thinking about retirement for a while and wondered whether they would have enough to afford to give up work at Gary’s state pension retirement age. Gary was worried about making mistakes investing money himself so decided they needed professional independent financial advice but wasn’t sure where to start.

Who can help?

He consulted the government pension information and advice service, Pension Wise. Here he found a list of local pension specialists.

When he contacted one financial advisor the experience was confusing; “I spoke to one guy on the phone and was completely bewildered. He assumed I knew what he was on about, but when I asked for clarity, he just gave me more jargon. It was so impersonal, I got nowhere.”

Their first meeting at Joslin Rhodes

They subsequently received a Joslin Rhodes flyer in the post. After a quick chat on the phone they booked a free initial meeting.

During this first meeting Gary and Michelle told their financial planner, Christine, they were worried about having enough money invested for a comfortable retirement.

How much is enough?

Christine talked them through the PLAN HAPPY process and what enough money actually means. To find out if they have ‘enough’, they first need to establish what this ‘enough’ looks like.

She explained that to do this they need to look at their essential costs and decide what things they’d like to do in the future. Christine encouraged them to think of these as the materials that form their ‘enough’.

By attaching a clear figure to ‘enough money’, it’s then easier to work out how their pensions, savings and investments could be used to get them where they want to be.

More of the fun stuff

Gary and Michelle felt this was a great approach and really got them thinking about the things they’d like to do in the future. Gary said; “We’d love to buy a static caravan for regular weekend getaways as we love getting outdoors and I like canoeing and cycling, whereas Michelle likes to read and go to the cinema. Gary also likes to maintain the gardens.”

The value of time

Once the couple had established what their costs and desires were, Christine explained that time is also an asset that’s spent just like money. They admitted they used to do more things together when they were younger but don’t have much time these days having a young family, both agreed they’d really like to regain some of this time in the future.

Gary and Michelle then moved to the next stage of the process feeling confident and relieved that Christine had explained things in a way they understood. “The way the process works, even how it’s described, is so unique. She explained things in layman’s terms and we weren’t baffled by science, which was a relief.”


Now it was time for the Joslin Rhodes team to get to work taking all their financial assets and desires, and drawing up financial plans to plot a way for Gary and Michelle to get what they want.

At their meeting to view these plans, the couple were amazed to discover the team had planned for them retiring when their son is just 16 years old.

A bright future

The couple are now looking forward to the future without worrying about running out of money, happy that everything is being handled by experts.

Michelle said; “We now feel more confident we will be able to enjoy the things we love doing both before and after retirement.”