It has been said that most folks spend more effort and time in planning their family vacation than they do their financial futures. Let’s face it - planning a vacation is a whole lot more fun. Perhaps the inertia to develop a financial plan has something to do with the almost over-whelming variety of variables that need to be considered. After 30+ years of developing roadmaps for our clients’ financial objectives, we have found it essential to have a process when putting together all of the pieces of their financial puzzle.
Financial objectives are somewhat unique to every family we work with. But they usually fall into a few important categories and represent the “why” financial independence is important to people.
1st is Family. Taking care of those that we love and protecting them from the pitfalls and hazards that life throws at them. Another important consideration evolves around Occupation. You may aspire to a “work-optional” lifestyle or may want to retire completely and be confident of your ability to do so without outliving your money. And let’s not forget about our Bucket List - things we want to do, places we want to see - and having the time and financial independence to do them. Money represents the “How”- it makes the previous three objectives possible. These are the things that matter.
To achieve the things that matter, it is imperative to acknowledge the things that you can control. In life, there are many things that are out of your control. Rather than worrying about them, focus on the ‘controllables’ that keep you on track to your goals.
When it comes to investing your money, it’s important to understand the tradeoffs of risk and reward, and to have a non-reactive objective discipline or philosophy to keep you from making emotional mistakes. Managing financial risk, having an appropriate investment strategy, minimizing debt and having a common sense lifestyle are all important elements of achieving financial independence.
Working with a competent financial planning team will provide the clarity of your goals, the comfort of being on track, and the process necessary to develop the roadmap to your financial success. It can provide a sense of purpose, enabling you to enjoy the fruits of your occupation while providing order and liberation to your life.
Azimuth Wealth Advisory of Raymond James has been providing guidance to individuals and families for over 30 years. Let us know if we can assist you and and your family in planning your financial futures.