Birmingham Lake

"Wealth is not his that has it, but his that enjoys it"

-Benjamin Franklin

Traveling in the Alps

"Wealth consists not in having great possessions, but in having few wants"


Traveling in Crete

"Time is the most valuable thing a man can spend"

- Laertius Diogenes

Morris Dancing Birmingham

"The glow of one warm thought is to be worth than money."

-Thomas Jefferson

Alan Moran Independent Financial Adviser Birmingham

"I don't care too much for money for money can't buy me love"

- The Beatles

Traveling in the Red Sea

"Simple, genuine goodness is the best capital to found the business of this life upon. It lasts when fame and money fail, and it is the only riches we can take out this world with us."

-Louisa May Alcott, Little Men

cliffs of dover

"And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing."

-St. Paul

Finance in the Big City

"Not he who has much is rich but he who gives much"

-Erich Fromm

Birmingham UK Sunset

"Life is what happens to you while you are busy making other plans"

-John Lennon

Travels - A well lived life

"I pity that man who wants a coat so cheap that the man or woman who produces the cloth shall starve in the process"

-Benjamin Harrison

Your Financial Bucket

Proper financial planning is not about investments and pensions. It is about whether you will have enough money to live the life that you want without ever running out of money. 

Video Transcript:

Proper financial planning is not about investments and pensions.

It is about whether you will have enough money to live the life that you want without ever running out of money.

It goes hand in hand with deciding what you want to do and defining how you want to live your life. 

You may have specific goals and targets, or you may simply want to ensure that you can maintain your existing lifestyle and carry on doing what you are doing now.

I am going to look at your situation as if you were a ‘financial bucket’ so here goes --                                                                                                                            

Here is your financial bucket:

You have some money in your bucket already, for example you have your bank accounts, and you may have some ISAs, some shares, and some of you might have some old endowments. 

This is liquid capital, money you can get your hands on within 7-10 days if you needed to.

This is money that we can use for your financial planning.


Now, please don’t think for one minute that your house can be included in your bucket.

It can’t! ☹

Your house sits up here outside of your financial bucket.

The reason for being outside of your bucket is that you can’t eat bricks and mortar! For many people a house is as much a liability and big expense as it is an asset!

However, at some time in the future you might ‘choose’ to downscale to a smaller property

… in which case the difference between the two values

… will then come into your bucket at that time.

But until that time, it has to stay outside of your bucket.


Another thing we can’t include in your bucket is your pension fund. 

In fact, I say ‘your’ pension fund it’s not ‘your’ pension fund at all - if you think it is, try asking for it to buy a Ferrari! You can’t have it! It’s not your money!

However, at some future date 25% might come into your bucket as Tax Free Cash…

… and you’ll probably turn on a tap to draw an income or buy an annuity

… and this income will provide future inflows into your bucket.

But this 75%

… will never be your money if you buy an annuity

… and you can only have it if you change to a drawdown contract and pay tax on it – possibly a lot of tax!

Another thing that can’t be included in your bucket is the value of your business if you have one. 

You may have spent many years building up your business, you’ve put your heart and soul into it and by now it could have a real value, but until you sell it, it must stay outside of your bucket.


So, can you see, there is wealth that you are accumulating ‘inside your bucket’ and there is wealth you are accumulating ‘outside your bucket’?

The good news is you also have regular ‘in-flows’ into your bucket.

For example, you have told me that you and your partner (if applicable) each have a salary

If applicable you may take dividends from your business

You may have one or more children under the age of 19, so you receive child benefit

… And you may have other income from rented property, pensions in payment, investment income, and so on.

We take all of these sources of income into account to ensure that we understand where you are today so that we can plan where you are going to be in the future.


In the future you should have a State Pension (perhaps two)

 … and that will start flowing into your bucket…

Plus, as we have seen, there could be a house downscale which could cause a lump sum to come into your bucket

… there could be some Tax-Free Cash and income from your pension flowing into your bucket

… and there could be the possible sale of your business which may result in a lump of money coming into your bucket.

--- and there could be a possible inheritance if it doesn’t disappear in care fees or if we don’t get your parents to spend all their money first!

However, until those things happen, they can’t be included in your bucket.

OK? Are you with me so far?

So, we’ve got money inside and outside your bucket, with current and future inflows into your bucket.

Now all this looks great! Because on this basis your bucket should just fill up!

However! There’s just one problem!


Over here is a tap. 

And this tap is draining wealth from your bucket.

This tap is the cost of your current lifestyle. 

In other words, the cost of you doing the things you do, living the way you do.

It’s the cost of living in your current home.

It’s the cost of running your BMW or your Ford Fiesta.

It’s the cost of your holidays in the sun or skiing in the snow.

It’s the cost of bringing up your children, playing golf or doing what you enjoy.

Now this tap will continue to drain money for the next few years until one day it gets turned off

It will then be replaced by a different tap

This is the tap you’ll turn on when you become financially independent or you when you retire. 

This is the time when you might even spend more money than you do now.

This is when you’ll have all the time in the world to do all the things you’ve been intending to do while you are still fit and able to do it!

You may want to travel, spend more time on your hobbies, and do whatever is important to you.

This is your time to enjoy life.

Now this tap will go on for a certain amount of time until one day it too gets turned off

… to be replaced by another tap

Now this is the tap you will turn on, when, quite simply, you are too old to enjoy yourself!

In other words, you’ll be too old to jump on and off an airplane, or to jump in and out of a yacht, -- you’ll just be too old, and possibly too frail. You should have done all of those things here!

… at this stage you will be more interested in comfort and security.

… Until eventually you end up in a box

which will have your name on it and it will say ‘Rest in Peace’

… and that will be the end of you and your personal expenditure tap!!

Now arguably there is one other tap

… which is the tap that might drain out ‘one off’ expenses

…  such as a World Cruise, a daughter’s wedding, a yacht purchase, or other large expenses which could seriously drain your liquid wealth.


I can tell you now, one of two things are likely to happen to your bucket:

Either it will run out …

which means that after working hard for perhaps 30 or 40 years it means you won’t be able to do all the things you’ve planned! 

… this tap

…  will have to be turned right down or even off!!

You won’t be able to do stuff!!

And that’s sad! … What a waste!

Or worse!

It could overflow!

It means that you could go to your grave here

…   with TOO MUCH MONEY!! 

I’ll tell you why this is worse! 

After paying tax throughout your life, on everything you’ve ever earned (PAYE & NIC), 

… on everything you’ve ever spent (VAT) 

… every time you’ve changed house (Stamp Duty), 

… every time you’ve filled your car up with fuel (fuel tax) etc, etc. 

... you go to your grave

… with too much money so that you pay 40% of everything you’ve ever worked for in Inheritance Tax and this is crazy!

But that’s not the worse part about dying with too much money! Oh no! After all, tax is just tax. Painful for your beneficiaries, but it’s just tax!

There is something far worse ...

The worse thing about dying with too much money

… is this ...

It means you probably didn’t do stuff here

when you could have done!

It means that you didn’t have that special holiday with (Mary) before she died, 

… you didn’t help the kids out when you could easily have afforded it, 

… you didn’t have that World Cruise when you were both fit and able to do it, 

… you worked 5 years longer than you needed to have done, 

… you spent too much time working when you could have been playing

And now IT’S TOO LATE!! 

Because you’re on your death bed!! And you MISSED THE CHANCE!!! And you’re NOT coming back!!



My job is to help you manage your bucket! To help you achieve all the things you want in your life, to enjoy the lifestyle you want NOW

… and here

… to help you escape early so you can enjoy yourself while you are still fit and able

… and here in later life


That’s what I do. We call it proper financial planning. We help clients achieve the lifestyle they want without fear of them ever running out of money - or them dying with too much!

Now, in order for me to help you I need you to do some homework for me!

You see I need to know what this

… and this

… looks like!

In other words what it costs you to live your life at the moment, and what do you want your desired future lifestyle to look like in the future.

To do this I need you to complete your Expenditure Questionnaire and ensure that we have all of your financial details.

You may think that looking into your financial future is complicated and you would be right. However, we have many years’ experience of helping clients and you might like to look at a sneak preview by looking at another of our videos:

If you want to live the life that you want and enjoy life to the full without ever running out of money now is your chance. It’s over to you. Act now! This is too important to leave for another day.

What our Clients say

Alan has the ability to listen and care about people

We first met Alan in 1999; we both wished that weFinancial Planning Clients had known him many years before. Alan has several attributes, in addition to his financial skills, the ability to listen and caring about people. From the first day that we met our financial affairs became organised, now to the point where we can say that we never have any financial worries, in fact we seem to be better off financially now more than ever before. All due to Alan's guidance and expertise. We both consider Alan a very good friend, nice to know he would be there if we needed him.

Norman & Peggy Howell, Birmingham

I always receive a fast and efficient response

Financial Planning ClientsIt has been almost ten years now since David and myself first consulted you for advice and guidance on financial matters, so I feel that it's time that I wrote to thank you for the help and assistance that has always been forthcoming. Shortly after we had moved house in 1992, you advised us to switch from one type of mortgage to another, which turned out to be the most successful financial move we had made in years. Over the years we contacted you for financial advice and guidance when our daughter was heading for University, on taking out life and house assurance policies and general financial overhauls. Your recommendations have always been sound and given in a manner both efficient and friendly, none more so than when I was widowed just over two years ago and needed a considerable amount of help, immediately given upon request and with great sensitivity during what was a very difficult time for me. There is little I can add, except to also thank the rest of your staff, friendly voices at the end of the telephone who take and pass on my enquiries and ensure that I always receive a fast and efficient response. I can recommend, without reservation, Interface Financial Planning Limited.

Maureen Pittaway, Sutton Coldfield

A very special and caring person

Financial Planning ClientsFinancial Planning ClientsAlan - A very special and caring person, who it's been a pleasure to meet - thank you again it's been a privilege and honour, your kindness has been second to none and we know you've helped probably more than you should but I can assure you it was all very much appreciated, more than you know.

Bill & Sue Ralph, Oldbury, West Midlands

Advice that has been invaluable

Financial Planning Clients Financial Planning ClientsAlan has been our financial adviser for 5 years. He is professional, well informed and reliable, and his advice has been invaluable to us. He and his staff are courteous and efficient, and we have no hesitation in approaching him for advice on any aspect of our finances, or in recommending him to relatives, friends and colleagues.

Tony & Sue Critchley, Lichfield

Always friendly and considerate

Alan Moran has acted on our behalf for over 10 years. Alan has over this time always listened to our requirements and fed back to us the best options, given our constraints and made very useful alternatives suggestions. He has always been friendly and considerate. I would not now consider making any financial investment or savings decision without first consulting him.

Ian & Joyce Miller, Birmingham

Honest and always takes the time to explain everything thoroughly

Financial Planning Clients Financial Planning ClientsAlan has acted as our family Financial Adviser for many years. He is honest, non-pushy and always takes the time to explain everything thoroughly as often as needed. Alan is not only our Financial Adviser but we regard him as our friend. We would have no hesitation in recommending him and his staff to anyone who needs a Financial Adviser they can trust.

Malcolm & Sylvia Smith, Perry Barr, Birmingham

Alan's sound advice has improved my life no end.

I was introduced to Alan Moran in 1999. I was juggling my finances just to keep afloat and was wary of taking outside advice. A close friend of mine recommended Alan as a reliable and honest adviser who would take great care in choosing the right path to get my financial affairs on track. Trusting their judgement, I arranged to meet Alan. I was treated with the utmost care, given time to consider the guidance that Alan provided and never pushed into taking on financial services. Meeting Alan and acting upon his sound advice has improved my life no end. Even on a limited income, prudent planning has enabled me to save for annual holidays and even cope with the occasional unexpected expense as well as keep up to date with all of my bills. I count Alan among my friends and have recommended him to both my sister and my parents. He really is the genuine article and I cannot thank him enough for all he did for me.

Zena Davis, Coventry

Alan's knowledge of financial matters is very comprehensive

Alan was introduced to me by a friend at the time when my finances were a mess and I just didn't know what to do for the best. Calmly, kindly and sympathetically Alan sorted everything out. Since then he and his wonderful team have sorted out my house and car insurances, my son's mortgage and pension plan and, last but not least, guided me through the ramifications of buying a property in Spain. I have recommended him to friends, as his knowledge of financial matters is very comprehensive and sound. Alan is able to offer advice without making the recipient feel a complete idiot and he takes time to explain things thoroughly and in a way that is understandable.

Tricia Adams, Cannock, Staffordshire

Alan's sound advice has improved my life no end.

I have been a client of Alan Moran's for 12 years and during that time he has given me valuable advice on all aspects of finance. He always explains everything thoroughly and has been particularly supportive during periods of crisis in my life. He helped my late husband and I when his business went into liquidation and was even more valuable when my husband died, pointing me in the right direction with my finances and getting me to invest my money sensibly and with the just rewards that I am now experiencing. I regard Alan not only as my Financial Adviser, but also as my friend, and would, and in fact have, recommended Interface Financial Planning Services to anyone needing a Financial Adviser they can trust.

Marian Poolley, Sutton Coldfield

Efficient and reliable in terms of financial decision making

Financial Planning ClientsAlan Moran has been our independent financial adviser for a number of years. He has proven to be an efficient and reliable person to guide us in terms of financial decision making with regard to planning and management of current and future economic matters. He is friendly, discreet, careful and always courteous.

Chris & Tony Hampton, Halesowen

Highly professional, friendly and supportive approach

Financial Planning Clients Financial Planning ClientsWe have been clients of Alan Moran (Interface Financial Planning Ltd) for over five years. In this time, his highly professional, friendly and supportive approach has provided us with a thorough review of all aspects of our finances. We are now in a position where both our short term and long term financial planning is well organised and structured to suit our personal needs. We have recommended Alan and his team to many of our friends and know that they, like us, have been impressed and grateful for the care he has taken to provide such individual service.

Ann & Allan Rowlands, Handsworth Wood, Birmingham

Professional and friendly manner

Just dropping you a line to say thank you for all the help you've provided us throughout the purchase of our house and the investment policies you've recommended us. May we both thank you for the very professional and friendly way, in which you handled our business, and look forward to hearing from you in the future.

John Fletcher & Linda Davis, Bromsgrove

Wouldn't hesitate to recommend

We were recommended to Alan by my brother in law and have been very pleased with his advice and assistance. Since using his services, we have organised our Wills, Pensions and re-jigged our finances, and now would not consider making any financial investment or savings decision without first contacting him! We would have no hesitation in recommending his services to anyone requiring sound independent financial advice.

Richard Salaman & Emma Staples, Surrey

Valuable advice on our mortgage, future planning, savings and pension investments.

Financial Planning Clients Financial Planning ClientsSeeking financial advice for the first time, I received details of three local IFAs. However, these cold statistics gave no idea of the actual person to whom I would need to entrust confidential information. Sometime later I came across an article in a local paper by Alan (Moran) in which the writer came over as friendly and trustworthy as well as being a qualified IFA. Having contacted Interface Financial Planning, the result has been a friendly relationship and valuable advice on our mortgage, future planning, savings and pension investments.

Mike & Gloria Nash, Great Barr, Birmingham

I have never had a single financial concern

Financial Planning ClientsThe best thing financially that I ever did when I contacted Alan. I have never had a single financial concern and he has supported me through difficult times including the death of my dear wife.

Norman Howell, Birmingham

“Don’t put off the planning for your financial future as you are
never aware of what lies around the corner”

We first met Alan in 1999; we both wished that weFinancial Planning ClientsIt was very important to gain financial advice in such a challenging time after my wife passed away. I needed to ensure that, as a newly single parent, I had got my finances sorted out and had also made provision for my children in case anything happened to me. As neither my wife or myself had made a will, Alan’s advice and guidance through this very difficult period was invaluable, especially dealing with the paperwork associated with this.

Paul from Birmingham

“Alan, was immediately empathetic, encouraging and, above all, practical and straightforward”

Financial Planning Clients

I realised that I had been operating both my general and particularly financial affairs reactively for far too long and it was time I behaved like a grown up. So I started to think about how I might achieve some sort of practical stasis. Alan, was immediately empathetic, encouraging a nd, above all, practical and straightforward. I hadn’t consciously taken financial advice before, but came to realise that the various salesmen who had sold me policies and pension upgrades were not motivated in the same way a ‘proper’ financial adviser was (or should be). Consequently, I had taken on commitments that weren’t necessarily in my best interests. Alan is genuinely interested in my circumstances, and owns a readiness to go beyond what I had imagined would be the boundaries of the role.

Steven from Cirencester