How to build a financial plan
Building your own financial plan sounds quite daunting, right? Well, it really isn’t!
If you’re prepared to invest a little ‘thinking’ time in putting a plan together, you’ll find it so much easier to manage your money in the long-term. What’s more, the sooner you have a plan and specific goals in place, the sooner you can start achieving them and making a real success of your financial future.
On a daily basis as Independent Financial Advisors, we work with clients to create bespoke financial plans and there are three key areas to consider – this is the thinking time! Everyone can begin to plan their financial future by creating a plan, but it’s our job to turn your plan into a reality. Having an Independent Financial Advisor on hand to discuss your aspirations can really help you to focus and understand what’s important to you.
What goals would I like to achieve?
As with most things in life, building wealth takes both time and effort. You can’t expect to have enough money in the bank to either stop working for good or head off around the world after a couple years of saving and investing, unless you win the lottery of course!
You need to focus on the long-term, something which can be quite tricky because none of us can ever know what’s around the corner. However, you will probably have an idea of what you’d like to be doing or where you’d like to be in, say, five or ten years time.
What’s important to you? What are your ambitions? What are your dreams? Write your answers down and consider what financial situation you need to be in to get there. Set your unique personal goals and, once you’ve agreed what they are, you can then start to measure your progress as you work towards them.
Having your specific financial goals written down in a plan will be extremely rewarding in many ways. It will enable you to address any gaps or shortfalls and will give you the confidence and necessary focus required to achieve them. In short, it will help you realise your long-term financial success.
What position am I in now?
You’re probably familiar with the term ‘cash flow’. Every business, for example, needs to maintain the correct level of cash flow to ensure the company runs smoothly and is able to develop and succeed. It’s exactly the same when implementing effective personal financial planning.
If you can take all of your potential future needs into account and ensure you have the finances available at the right time to cover them, then you can create a secure and stable financial future. We can help with this too.
Here at Jones & Co, we can use basic and detailed cash flow modelling forecast tools that allow us to work out what figures you need to aim for or if there might be any shortfalls in your income at a predetermined point in the future. This means we can address any issues before they happen. We can also simulate a post-retirement plan to work out how much you will need to achieve the retirement you want i.e. a comfortable one where you don’t have to worry about your financial situation!
Just have a quick think about where you are right now. Write down a list of what you have, where it is and how much is there. Do you have any assets such as a property? What are your cash balances? Do you have an investment portfolio? Are you paying into a pension? What debts do you have? What is your monthly income and what is your monthly expenditure? And be honest!
By understanding where you are now with your cash flow, you can, along with professional independent financial advice, plan your journey to long-term financial success.
What’s my next step?
Remember that a financial plan is not static. You don’t write it, stick it in a drawer and forget about it. You must review and discuss it on a regular basis to make sure you’re always on track to reaching your goals. We meet on a regular basis with our clients to provide a comprehensive review of their financial plan. Again, it’s all part of what we do. We have the professional, technical tools to plan and advise with meticulous attention to detail and ensure each bespoke financial plan we create for a client is delivering everything that is expected.
Nothing in life is certain and the chances are you will need to adapt your plan a few times. That’s completely normal and doesn’t mean you’ve failed. Far from it. It means you’re taking responsibility.
So, once you’ve written your plan, why not pop and see us and we’ll provide you with expert feedback as to how you can further improve it. And if you simply don’t have the time (or inclination!) to draft a plan, feel free to make an appointment to speak with one of our experienced Independent Financial Advisors and we’ll create one together.
It’s our goal to help you to maximise or sustain your wealth with bespoke financial advice. Arrange your FREE consultation today and let us help you to build a financial plan that exceeds your expectations and realises all of your ambitions.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, call 01246 550521 or simply pop into our offices on Glumangate in Chesterfield. We look forward to seeing you!
Risk warnings: Pensions and investments go up or down in value and on encashment you could potentially get back less than originally invested. The contents of this article are for information only and do not constitute financial advice. Always seek professional guidance when investing in risk-based investments.