The Importance & Benefits of Financial Planning
It’s very likely either you or someone you know have long-term goals that include having peace of mind by securing your financial future. So, you found yourself seeking financial security by finding a financial adviser for investment planning only to find you were being pitched some annuity or a bunch of mutual funds or other financial products that don’t really solve the important questions you have about your retirement planning. That’s pretty frustrating, to say the least.
So how do you go about finding a financial planner who has the success and growth of your investment portfolio in their best interests? And how can they help your children learn to have a better financial understanding?
In this blog, we’re going to talk about which stage of life you want to start the financial planning process, the importance of financial planning, the best way to find good financial professionals and the benefits of financial planning. We’re also going to go over how finding the right financial advisor can help teach your children comprehensive financial planning that can help them take small steps toward better spending patterns and much more!
Why And When Do You Need A Financial Planner?
Financial planners can help you set goals for your personal financial situation that stretch your abilities. They can help design a strategic plan while setting milestones for you to hit your mark, and they can give you advice on specific investment options that will be aligned with your short-term and long-term financial goals. We all need nudges to move us in the right direction from time to time, and a good financial planner is a perfect person to help you do just that.
Whether you’re into stocks and mutual funds or not, or whether you’re all-in with real estate investments or not, it’s nice to have a team member on your side who has the education, certifications, experience, and technology to assist you when you need it.
How To Find A Great Financial Planner
You want a systematic approach to finding a good investment advisor. Google searches may not cut it when it comes to finding the best person to meet your financial planning needs and future goals. You want a non-biased professional financial planner who will be putting your retirement plans and wealth management first and foremost and whose decisions are not hinged on any commissions they may earn from selling you financial products that don’t meet your investment strategies and personal goals.
The National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA) is an exclusive organization of which only 1% of financial planners in the country qualify and are members. This membership is exclusive to financial planners and advisors who cannot sell securities because they do not have a securities license and therefore cannot sell investment products. Additionally, they agree to ongoing education after they have completed their initial financial education and they do not sell any financial products for commissions and have no conflicts of interest in delivering their expertise.
What is a NAPFA Member?
It is recommended by other financial experts that you find a NAPFA member who you feel will be aligned with your long-term strategy, your values, and interests in your initial assessment. It is also recommended that you interview as many financial planners as necessary before you make a decision on who would be best to help you put together a good financial plan for your unique goals.
These types of financial advisors are fee-only meaning they charge a fixed rate per session or per hour much like attorneys conduct their businesses. This approach can ensure that you will not be misled by any commissions they may be earning under the guise of giving you “the best” long term estate planning.
A solid financial planner will also discuss your current situation, what your top financial priorities are and what you in particular need. They will talk with you about your financial life including your income, your financial goals, the investments you have, the debts you’re working to reduce, and your savings. A good financial planner will understand that an investment strategy is an ongoing process and may need to be altered or tweaked along the way.
Practical Ways To Work With A Financial Planner
You are the athlete, and the financial planner is the coach. In the beginning, a lot of financial information is exchanged and once your advisor (your coach) understands where you are and where you want to go, then directives are given to you by your coach to allocate or diversify or increase savings, reduce the debt on your credit cards, or to avoid a large purchase – all in an effort to help you gain your financial independence so that you can retire securely.
A holistic financial plan should include meeting with your financial planner at least every six months to evaluate how you are doing and to set new goals and course-correct if needed. Your job is to be the athlete and follow the comprehensive plan that your coach has outlined for you. Then, in good time you’ll be able to step back and see that all of your hard work and progress is paying off.
Financial Planning With Kids In Mind
I think it’s every parent’s wish that their children are happier, healthier, and wealthier than they themselves were. So one of the best gifts you can give your children (besides emotional well-being) is the gift of financial literacy.
As you are receiving valuable investment techniques from your financial advisors and planners you will be in a position to teach some of these ideas to your children such as saving, investing, budgeting and allocation. This is a good starting point for your teens and tweens to begin learning general information that will undoubtedly increase their financial health throughout their entire lives.
A good app to start teaching your kids about finances is the greenlight app.
Imagine this…your parents taught you how to set up an investment account when you started your first job at sixteen (or in my case at fourteen), and you diligently put 10-20% of all of your earnings ever since into your retirement account. And imagine this, that your parents taught you on an ongoing basis as you developed about the importance of a personal budget and the types of investments and the need to have an emergency fund. Wow, what a great gift to give! Agreed?
What Financial Planning Can Do For You
Which of these ways would you rather identify with at the ripe old age of 80?
- You’ve hit all of your financial goals and can leave a legacy for your children and grandchildren.
- You have no idea where your money went over the years and you’re struggling to get by.
Finding a good financial planner, educating yourself as much as possible about finances and careful financial planning and your ability to successfully execute that plan is the difference between these two scenarios.
Hiring a financial planner works exactly the same way that working with a coach does – it helps you stay on track and keeps you aligned with your goals.
Having more money doesn’t fundamentally change the person you are at your core. Having more money does, however, allow you to make a bigger impact on the world and potentially change more lives. So, if you’re going to make a splash…make it a big one and put a solid financial plan in place so that you can meet all of your financial goals for yourself and your family.
Until next time, Earn Passively & Live Abundantly!
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