I have been a financial adviser for about 20 years, and met with quite literally hundreds of clients in all stages of life and with differing financial needs. It has always been fascinating to learn how people think and act in respect of their wealth. The financial planning process itself is pretty straightforward – confirm and clarify objectives and develop strategies, structures and investments that will help meet the objectives of our clients. As such, for me, it is the interaction with clients that I find interesting and sometimes still surprising. Listening to a client, and confirming back to them your understanding of their objectives and preferences is of course paramount in this process.
However, when I think of what I’ve actually spent most of my time discussing with them, it pretty much comes down to the same things, time and time again:
- Spend less than you earn.
- Invest surplus income in quality assets which generate income.
- Review those assets on a regular basis.
- Structure your financial affairs as simply as possible, but no simpler.
When it comes to investments:
- As a financial adviser my ‘value proposition’ does not include ‘shooting out the lights’ on investment returns (quite frankly, if I could do that on a consistent longer term basis, I wouldn’t need a day job!)
- Risk always equals return.
- We don’t want to avoid risk. However, we need to properly assess the risks and ensure we are appropriately compensated for them.
My aim is always the same. To place my client in a position to make an informed decision. It’s always their decision, I’m simply looking to provide constructive input.
Please note this article provides general advice only and has not taken your personal, business or financial circumstances into consideration. If you would like more tailored advice, please contact us today.