To be eligible to open an IFISA, investors must be a UK resident aged 18 or over. However, whether an IFISA is suitable for you and your investment portfolio will depend on a number of things, including the asset(s) that you are planning on holding within your IFISA, and your investor classification.
IFISAs are investment products - when investing via one, your capital is at risk and returns are not guaranteed. For this reason, they will not be suitable for everyone.
Though all investors (including everyday investors) can open an IFISA, some providers may only offer their products to experienced investors - this should be checked on a provider-to-provider basis.
Experienced investors are those classified as;
- sophisticated investors
- high-net-worth individuals
- professional investors
An IFISA can usually offer better potential returns than more traditional saving and investment routes, such as a Cash ISA. However, with these higher returns, comes higher risks.
Unlike with a Cash ISA, your capital is at risk when investing into an IFISA, and returns are not guaranteed. IFISAs also don't benefit from protection from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS), which covers Cash ISA holders for up to £85,000 if their authorised provider was to go bust.
All of this means that the IFISA is generally better suited to experienced investors who have the knowledge and experience to make their own investment decisions, and are willing to take more risks in the search for higher potential returns.
When deciding whether an IFISA is right for you, you should consider;
- Your risk profile. Are you willing (and able) to take the risks associated with an IFISA?
- How long your funds will be locked away for. When investing with an IFISA, your money will often be locked away for a fixed term. The length of this term will vary on a provider-to-provider basis, but you must make sure you won't need access to your funds before the end of it (unless your provider allows early access).
- Speaking to an independent financial advisor. This will help you to assess your investment goals, return requirements, and whether an IFISA would fit into your investment portfolio.
CARLTON Bonds are an IFISA provider specialising in fixed term property bonds.
Against a backdrop of low interest rates and a volatile stock market, the IFISA can provide an attractive investment opportunity for experienced investors.
With the ability to hold peer-to-peer loans and debt-based securities, IFISA investments have the potential to generate higher rates of return than more traditional investment routes for investors with a greater appetite for risk.
To find out more, download our free IFISA guide.