As detailed by the Economic Policy Institute in 2016 “Nearly half of families have no retirement account savings at all”…  an unfortunate and shocking testament to the importance of a prudent financial planning.   By establishing a clear and sound financial plan you can better map out your economic future; the first stage of a healthy financial outlook.  

Where should you start when establishing a sound financial plan?

Listed below are a few examples of things to consider.

  • Financial goals: What are your long-term goals and your short-term necessities?  The foundation for meaningful and long-term financial prosperity is built on clearly defined objectives.  How much will you need to fund post-secondary education for your children, remodeling your home, a second honeymoon or unexpected medical expenses?  Once established our advisers can help estimate milestones to track and reach your goals.
  • Our team will help establish a plan of action by forming quantifiable metrics to both forecast and measure your financial milestones.  We will provide you with a financial performance management system (FPMS) so you can better track your progress; including the following items:
    • Personal net worth statement: A snapshot in time of your assets, liabilities and net worth which both allows you to understand your financial position and doubles as a benchmark to measure future results.
    • Cash flow analysis: A rolling review of monthly income, near-term cash outlays, and long-term savings objectives.
    • Quarterly and annual assessments through trend analysis and variance analysis (actual versus anticipated returns).
  • Retirement strategy: Working with you to determine your retirement timeline, building in contingencies for unexpected events, then defining as sensible contribution scheme to accumulate the required retirement capital necessary for future distributions.
  • Long-term investment plan: Your investment strategy will be driven by your financial goals and depend on several factors:
    • Risk tolerance,
    • Return requirements,
    • The probability of meeting your return needs,
    • Tax situation – such as the percentage of your investments based on a tax-sheltered retirement plan versus taxable portfolio, and,
    • What are you are fiscal constraints?
  • Asset protection planning: Do you have in place the necessary insurance coverage to meet unexpected events – protecting your assets and ensuring the well being of both your loved ones and you?
    • Examples
      • Life and disability insurance,
      • property and casualty coverage, and,
      • catastrophic coverage.
  • Estate planning: It is important to make arrangements so you can ensure the financial security of your loved ones, clearly define your intended beneficiaries, and limit unnecessary family strife during times of understandable anguish.
    • Some helpful points to consider:
      • Have you properly documented your arrangements?
      • Should you establish a living trust versus a will, do you have an advance healthcare directive, or have you named a power of attorney (POA)?
      • Have you updated beneficiary forms and notified trustee or POA?
      • Would your trustee or POA know what monthly/annual expenses you incur, what institutions you bank and invest with, or who they should notify after your passing?

 

Have questions?

Need help getting started, unsure about your financial plan, or just looking to advance your strategy – contact us.