The Financial Planning Process
Here's What to Expect
Every client relationship is different, because your goals and values aren't the same as anyone else's. But it's scary to leap into something that has the ability to transform your life, like financial planning, without any tangible ideas of what that process will look like.
Use this high-level overview to get a feel for the steps we'll take together, to help you start making better financial decisions and using money as a tool to live the life you want. This is the framework that will take you from second-guessing whether you're making all the right moves -- and give you the clarity you need to create and build wealth.
You have a lot of financial accounts: bank accounts, investment accounts, retirement accounts, health savings accounts… the list can go on and on. You also have credit cards, mortgages, student loans, insurance policies, employer benefits -- and that doesn’t even get into whether or not you have the estate plan you need, college savings for your kids, and more.
That’s a lot of financial stuff, and it’s easy to lose track of exactly what everything is, where these accounts are, and why you have them.
Getting organized is the first step in establishing a financial foundation. We’ll take a look at what you have (and don’t have) to understand your current financial picture. This allows us to examine where we need to make adjustments in order to achieve what you want with your money.
Goal setting can sound a little tedious and mundane. This step is anything but. This is where you get to create what you want to have in your life.
We’ll discuss your thoughts and ideas and explore your opportunities for doing more with your money. Next, we’ll identify specific goals, determine when you want to achieve them, and figure out how much money you need. Then, we’ll decide which of your goals gets top priority and which ones you’ll focus on in the future.
You’ll not only know what you want to accomplish, but you’ll also understand the entire process and what it will take to get there. Once we set goals, we can build a specific plan for your finances and you can get in action.
Create a Strategy
Now you’re ready to get into action and take specific steps with your money to get what’s important to you. We’ll look at the various paths you could take to achieve your goals, then choose the one that works best. We’ll make decisions like:
- What your spending plan includes
- Where to save your money
- How to invest to meet your goals
- What accounts you need to open or close
- Which policies you need to update or change
- How to best repay existing debts
We can also evaluate what adjustments you need to make in your financial life to set you up for success.
Explore Additional Opportunities
You need to know how to best use your money to achieve what you want and grow your wealth. We’ll explore various tools and solutions that you can use to help accelerate your progress to financial freedom, including financially savvy ways to use health savings accounts, Roth IRAs, investment accounts, different insurance policies, real estate, and more.
When we discuss opportunities that are relevant to you, we’ll create an investment strategy that meets your needs while balancing factors like your time horizon and appetite for risk.
Implement and Make Progress
You now have an entire financial foundation and a fully-formed system. This is where we get to flip the “ON” switch and start implementing your financial plan. Together, we’ll take actions that include:
- Opening the right accounts
- Setting up automatic contributions and transfers
- Providing guidance when you have questions or run into an obstacle
- Plugging into a pre-vetted network of CPAs, attorneys, mortgage brokers, and other experts to help you accomplish every step of your financial plan
At this stage, it’s critical that you continue to make progress and you’ll have an accountability partner and sounding board by your side to help you stay focused.
Review and Adjust
If there’s one thing we can guarantee, it’s that life changes. Financial plans should evolve and change, too. We’ll periodically review and adjust your strategy so that it remains in line with your current views about the present and the future.
Whether something unexpected happens or you simply change your mind, we want to ensure the actions you take always move you toward your goals and financial freedom.