When should I seek a financial planner?
Who should see a financial planner?
- “I don’t have any money to invest so there is no point in my seeing a financial adviser.”
- “We manage our own finances so we don’t need to see a financial planner.”
- “We struggle to make ends meet so we haven’t got any spare income to do anything else so we won’t be seeing a financial adviser.”
- “I’m only in my 20s, 30s, I don’t need to see a financial adviser.”
- “It’s too late for me to see a financial adviser as I’m retiring in 6 months’ time.”
All of these thoughts are far from the truth.
When should I seek financial advice?
There is a general perception that financial planning is only for people who have money to invest. That if I don’t have any spare cash and I’m having difficulty in making ends meet, financial planning is not for me. Having a personally tailored financial plan will assist you in every facet of your financial lives regardless of your current financial situation. In fact, your financial plan will help you achieve other personal goals simply because these goals are planned for.
Your financial adviser will fully assess your current financial situation. This means that the adviser will be obtaining information on your earnings, what it costs you to live, the value of all your assets including superannuation, and of course, what you owe. The adviser will also assist you in identifying what you want to achieve, both now and into the future. We consider your life risk requirements so that your family and wealth are protected in the case of death, serious injury or illness.
Once the data has been collected and analysed, the adviser will write your financial plan. The plan will include a summary of the current situation and this in itself can be an eye-opener for the client because many of us do not take stock of our overall financial picture. Taking into account your goals and objectives and the things that have been identified during the collection and analysis step, the adviser will make recommendations to improve your situation and to help you to meet the goals you have identified.
Sometimes the recommended strategies can be confronting, but always valuable. For example, if cashflow is a problem for you, the plan will include budgeting advice and strategies. If you have surplus funds for investment, the plan will include recommendations as to how those funds should be invested. If you are nearing retirement, the plan will address streamlining and consolidating your financial affairs ahead of retirement and strategies to maximise potential Centrelink payments.
If your superannuation investment option does not match the risk profile identified during discussions, there will be recommendations to adjust the investment option. If you have debt, there will be advice as to how best to manage that debt and if a restructure is required, the plan will address that point. If your life risk protection is inadequate, we will include recommendations to bring this protection to the correct level.
Your financial plan will also contain information on any ongoing costs you may incur if you accept the proposals, and there will be comparisons and projections between the current situation and the recommended strategies, including current and future costs.
To answer the question posed above as to when you should see a financial adviser – the answer is – as soon as possible!
For young people, a tailored financial plan will set them on a path to growing their wealth, perhaps via a savings plan. For pre-retirees, it is essential that you consult with a planner to ensure that what you have worked a lifetime for will support you in the way you want during retirement. Centrelink payments and health care cards are very important and this is a major part of the planning for those either in or nearing retirement.
If our recommendations are accepted and you proceed with the plan, we manage the implementation of the plan and if there is an ongoing component, this activates. Centrelink management is part of the ongoing work and it can be invaluable to retiree clients to have this onerous task managed.
Beginning the process of seeking financial advice is very simple. It is a matter of contacting either our Rockhampton or Melbourne offices with a request to see an adviser. Your meeting confirmation includes a list of things to bring with you to your meeting and from there the adviser will lead and guide you through the process.
What are you waiting for?