Having a Plan will ensure you achieve your goals

8th June 2011

Most people only have a vague idea about their future.  We believe that if you put in the time and effort to design and implement a comprehensive financial and life plan you are far more likely to achieve your goals. A plan is, in effect, a “financial roadmap” that will lead you to your destination, while providing points of reference along the way so that you know how your journey is progressing.

The first step is to understand where you want to be – what are your goals? These need to be clear and precise. “I want to be financially secure so that I can stop working at 60” works much better than “I would like to retire early”. You need to think your goals through, consider how you want to spend your time and what your priorities are.  An ethical Financial Planner has the skills to help you identify, qualify and prioritise your goals.

The second step is to put a cost to these goals.  It is important to take inflation into account when projecting costs into the future. An experienced Financial Planner can help you to quantify your goals accurately.

The third step is to understand what you need to do to achieve the income or capital needed to fund your goals. This may involve regular savings from income, or investment of a lump sum, or a combination of the two. A properly constructed plan will identify the investment returns needed to achieve your lifestyle goals and maintain your financial independence over the long-term. A properly qualified Financial Planner has the expertise needed to advise you how to achieve the required rate of return with the lowest risk to your capital.

The fourth step is to ensure that you review your plan regularly to take into account changes in your circumstances and objectives. You will also need to consider the opportunities or threats posed by changes in legislation – particularly taxation.  Your Professional Financial Planner will guide you through these steps over time and help you to keep your plan on track.

How do you ensure that your Financial Planner is ethical, experienced, properly qualified and professional?  The answer is to engage a Certified Financial Planner. By meeting rigorous international standards, a CFP professional is qualified to deliver integrated financial solutions that allow you to take control of your finances and achieve your life goals.

To find out how the team at Fortitude can help you to plan for the future, please get in touch.