top of page

What the Antiques Roadshow Can Teach Us About Personal Finance

How Understanding the Value of Your Assets Can Make a Big Difference to Your Financial Future

Imagine that you inherited a ring from Great Aunt Ethel 20 years ago and it has been gathering dust in a shoe box in your bedside table ever since. It does not hold any sentimental value for you and you would quite like to sell it.


So you go to get the ring valued.

“How much do you think it is worth?” asks the jewellery expert.

“I’ve always thought that I might get a few hundred pounds, but I’d be delighted if you told me that it was worth a thousand”, you reply.

“Well, I think you’d better sit down because I have good news for you. This is an exceptional piece of craftsmanship” replies the expert. “If you were to put this ring up for auction today, I would be recommending a reserve price of at least £100,000”.

[cue gasps from the crowd]


Over the last 20 years, has this ring been worth over £100,000 or just a few hundred?

You could argue it both ways, but in terms of the peace of mind value that it could have given you, it surely must be the lower figure.

Imagine how much more relaxed you might have felt about your finances if you had known that you had this significant asset to fall back on.


It is estimated that there could be as much as £50 billion languishing in lost bank accounts, Premium Bonds, pensions, investments and insurance policies. That is quite a sum and represents thousands upon thousands of lives that could have been immeasurably improved.

But the money does not even have to be technically lost for you to be losing out.

There are plenty of people we come across who have old pension paperwork gathering dust in a shoe box somewhere. If you have lost track of what it is worth, it is definitely not providing you with the peace of mind that you deserve.

That feels like a big, missed opportunity.


If you move house or get married or divorced, make sure that your investment and insurance providers have your new contact details. Some of our clients keep a simple one-page summary and update the values on it once a year.

Money is just a method of exchange and, who knows, that piece of paperwork might allow you to retire a year or two earlier. But if you don’t know what you have got, you can’t make accurate plans.

If you would like any help understanding the true value of your assets, please give us a call on 020 3488 9505.

The value of your investments can go down as well as up, so you could get back less

than you invested.

Tax and Estate planning is not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.


bottom of page