Real financial planning involves much more than just managing investments.
True comprehensive financial planning looks at all aspects of your finances to understand how they all fit together. This helps you to gain clarity about your family’s financial values and priorities.
Real financial planning is also about dealing with a sea of unknowns. Life expectancy, careers, health, inflation, investment returns, are all involved. The key is to make reasonable assumptions and then review the plan every year as circumstances change. This will give you the confidence to make important decisions knowing what impact they will have on your goals.
When you are done, you will be able to answer questions such as:
- Can I retire yet?
- When should I claim Social Security?
- What is the probability of never running out of money during my lifetime?
- How much do I need to save per month to achieve financial freedom at age 45, 50, 55, or 60?
- How much do I need to save each month to pay for my children’s education?
- When and how much of my IRA should I convert to Roth?
Real financial planning allows you to stay on course and confidently avoid the noise. These are the things that are not under your control like the stock market, politics, world chaos and other economic uncertainties.
While your friends and co-workers are fretting about the latest financial sound bite, you on the other hand, will be confident that:
- You are taking the right amount of risk in your portfolio
- You are saving enough for retirement
- Your family’s insurance coverage is sensible and cost effective
- You are being tax efficient
- Your estate planning is up to date
- You are making smart financial choices
There are also the intangible but still very real and important benefits that result from comprehensive financial planning.
[Related Reading: Creating Financial Simplicity]
The benefits include:
- Simplified financial life for your family
- Increased marital harmony around financial issues
- Achievement of financial freedom sooner
- The financial flexibility to pursue opportunities
- Sleep well at night, live life, and ignore Wall Street
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