Leaving things to the last minute is not unusual. Whether it is homework, dissertations, tax returns or topping up your ISA, most of us are guilty of procrastinating in some area of our life and then having to do important things in a rush.
The trouble is, if you miss a deadline, there can be repercussions. Most Chelsea clients are now too old for after-school detention, but losing out on your ISA can be a costly mistake.
Approximately 15% of ISA investments are made in the last few weeks of the tax year and, as we’ve probably all experienced, when you do something in a rush, there is usually a lot more room for error.
If you are investing by post:
1) Don't forget to sign! Too many investors forget to sign their application form or cheque for their ISA and miss the deadline. Make sure you double check before heading off to the post box.
2) Get the name right: make sure you make the cheque payable to the correct company – for Chelsea clients, the ISA provider is 'Cofunds Ltd'.
3) Moved in the past 12 months? Many people forget to tell us or their bank that they have moved. The wrong address could result in your ISA being rejected, so make sure we both have up to date details.
4) 1st or 2nd class? Neither. If you want to make sure your application arrives on time, you may be better off sending it via guaranteed overnight delivery.
If you are investing online or by phone:
5) Don't rely on the banks. Can you guarantee your bank won't have any glitches and your debit card will work at 11pm on 5 April? It can be a good idea to let your bank know if you want to transfer a large sum of money so they don't need to talk to you first.
6) Don't rely on technology. It's all very well having 24/7 access to the internet, but what if your broadband is down or your computer freezes? Don't leave it until the very last minute and save yourself the stress of watching a page eternally loading!
If you have left it until the last minute though, we will be open longer hours to help make sure you don’t lose out.
In addition to our normal working hours, the office will be open over the Easter weekend and until 11pm on 5 April.
If you are still undecided as to how to invest your ISA this year, don't let that stop you using your allowance – you can always put the money into the cash reserve and decide where to allocate it later.
Alternatively, you can read our blog on options for the undecided.
Call our client services team on 020 7384 7300 or invest online now.
By Sam Holder, operations director, Chelsea.