WHAT IS FINANCIAL PLANNING?
You have probably been bombarded with investment advice from every direction. Whether it is “financial experts” from the media, on a commercial or person next to your work cubicle, it seems everyone is offering an opinion regarding your financial future. Regardless of all these “expert” opinions you will be the one who will bear the weight if those advices won’t end up to be a good fit to your unique situation. When it comes to financial advice, you need wisdom and guidance but most importantly, you want to ensure that the advice you receive will address your greatest financial needs – now and in the future.
Financial planning can be defined as a long-term process of wisely managing your finances so you can achieve your life goals and dreams. It can help assess every aspect of your financial life – including saving, investments, insurance, taxes, retirement and estate planning. Financial planning is an ongoing process.
Typically, our process starts with a conversation to hone in on your unique needs. This will allow us to create a strategy designed to meet those specific areas, rather than sifting through the latest trends and investment hype.
Whether a single financial problem is being addressed or a comprehensive financial plan is being developed, the financial planning process has eight distinct steps.
Through an eight-step process, we consider you needs and goals as well as a variety of financial information to create a customized strategy. This process is ongoing, in that we are always there to guide you and make necessary changes to your strategy as years go by.
8 Steps of Financial Planning Process
Step 1: Define Major Life Goals First, we will simply get to know you, your financial situation, and your needs. With our solid experience, knowledge, and dedication, you can be assured that we will understand your personal and business goals, and translate them into customized solutions.
Step 2: Gathering Necessary Information In order to offer you truly comprehensive service, we collect necessary information, risk tolerance measures and documents. During this step we may discuss a whole host of topics including retirement income, education funding, premature death and disability risk, and qualified plan distribution etc. We leverage professionals who specialize in the areas of law, accounting, business valuation, and organizational development. This allows us to find answers that are both effective and meaningful to you.
Step 3: Determining Specific Goals and Objectives We understand that each person and each business is unique, and therefore faces distinct challenges. Your customized financial strategy will address the challenges that are most important to the success of your financial future. We encourage to effectively prioritize your goals and ensure you and your Advisor are on the same page. This process gives you a solid picture of your priorities and enables open discussion with your Advisor and family members.
Step 4: Developing the Recommendation(s) We develop recommendation(s) based on your goals and objectives. Since no two life situations are a like we develop tailored plan designed for each client’s concerns, abilities and goals. Also, there is usually more than one way for financial goals to be achieved, alternative strategies are presented for consideration.
Step 5: Communicating the Recommendation Once we have a clear understanding of your "perfect" and "satisfactory" goals, we will make a recommendation that emphasizes or de-emphasizes your goals accordingly.
Step 6: Implementing the Recommendation(s) We will choose appropriate products mix to support your goals, concerns, risk tolerances and financial circumstances.
Step 7: Monitoring Process Our relationship does not end with the implementation of your financial strategy. We will meet with you on a regular basis to monitor your evolving needs and goals in light of changes in the investment markets, tax laws, etc., and will recommend changes as appropriate. We pride ourselves on this commitment and look forward to strengthening our relationship with you over time.
Step 8: New or Adjusted Goals and Priorities Change is inevitable, and it can affect our ability to reach our goals - sometimes prompting us to create new ones altogether. Our process allows you to conveniently make changes to your plan as situations arise.
Investments are subject to market risks including the potential loss of principal invested. Asset allocation does not assure or guarantee better performance and cannot eliminate the risk of investment losses.