October is National Financial Planning Month
October is National Financial Planning Month, with an intent to highlight the benefits of developing a financial plan and to remind those who do not currently have one that it is something they may want to consider. The average person will work most of their lives to enable them to pay for the necessities of life, and hopefully to save for their retirement. We make decisions in every stage of life regarding how we spend these earnings, particularly how much to save, can we afford this house, how do we pay for kids’ college, vacations, cars, healthcare, etc. A sound financial plan will enable you to make informed decisions when you are faced with these choices.
Who can benefit from having a financial plan? Everyone.
Regardless of your stage of life or your financial health, a well-designed financial plan can provide you with a factual, unbiased presentation of your current financial health. A detailed financial plan can be a simple checkup with an actionable recommendation, or it can be a complex assessment detailing cash flow, retirement scenarios, investment allocations, estate planning, and tax optimization. It is important to remember that a financial plan should be seen as a living document that will change as your life changes. A proper plan will outline recommendations for you to consider, whether you are just starting your career, in your prime earning years, approaching retirement, or beyond.
When should I get a financial plan? The sooner the better.
Creating a financial plan early in life can help prevent mistakes that we all make when it comes to our finances. Greater insight into how a mortgage, large purchase, or investment will affect you today, and in the future, can greatly reduce the chance of making an ill-informed decision. Even a simple plan can help outline a budget, maximize your employer benefits, review retirement savings opportunities, and review your investment strategy to greatly increase your chances for success in achieving your long-term retirement goals.
How do I get started? Understand where you are and what you need help with.
While a qualified financial planner can work with you to develop a plan, they are limited by the information you can provide and the extent of your involvement. Be prepared to answer questions and provide a complete picture of your finances.
Keep it up to date. Once a plan is created it is important to review it annually, or after any major changes in your life. This periodic review will ensure your plan is updated to confirm you are still on track to meet the goals you and your financial planner established.
Your financial advisor is there to help. Ultimately, it is your plan comprised of your needs and goals. The financial advisor is there to provide you with an honest assessment, guide you on a path that will give you the greatest chance for success, and work with you to implement that plan once its established.
Building a comprehensive financial plan requires time and commitment, but the benefits of having a solid plan to achieve your financial goals throughout the different stages of your life can be the key towards actually achieving those goals.
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Insight Wealth Strategies, LLC (IWS) and its affiliates do not provide tax, legal or accounting advice. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal or accounting advice. You should consult your own tax, legal and accounting advisors before engaging in any transaction.