Just as the Springboks have a plan which plays to their strengths and produces a winning streak, so too should each person have a plan to meet their financial goals.
Allan Gray strongly recommends that a financial plan composed by a qualified, independent financial advisor is critical in order to achieve your goals. Just as you would see a medical professional to advise you on health issues, a qualified adviser is crucial to your financial wellbeing. In the short term, you may feel you don’t need a doctor’s advice, but this could severely impact your prognosis further down the line.
Select an independent financial advisor
The best advice is available from an individual who is not attached to the underlying service provider (an Institution or Insurance company) so that the advisor cannot be incentivised to recommend a specific ‘house’ product or investment.
What role does the advisor play in your investment success?
Put together a plan. This is a key starting point to financial freedom. Set your goals and establish an investment strategy that will achieve them.
Invest in the right products. There are so many financial products and each has differing tax treatment and investment objectives. It’s important to identify the right combination that suits you.
Bear inflation in mind. Ultimately, you need to grow your after-tax investment returns above inflation to avoid eroding your long-term spending power.
Preserve your retirement savings when changing jobs. If you don’t preserve your savings, you probably won’t have enough money in the kitty to sustain you in later years.
Don’t focus on only one investment market. Diversification is key with a tailored investment strategy to suit your risk profile.
Don’t act on your emotions. This often results in buying or selling at the wrong time. One needs to ensure your strategy is properly conceived and is aligned to achieving your goals.
How to prepare for your first meeting with an advisor
Establish a view of your financial position. Do your budget! Document your monthly income and expenditure and your current asset and liability positions. Having a budget will assist the advisor in formulating a plan. If you don’t have a budget or record of your finances, your advisor can assist you in compiling your financials. Click here to see our financial planning worksheet.
Identify your short, medium and long-term goals. Retirement, children’s education, holidays, etc.
Understand your risk appetite. Every person has a different understanding and tolerance of risk. Your advisor needs to go through different scenarios to establish your appetite, which will be driven by your financial position and goals.
Evaluate your debt. List your debt obligations. It may be more important to pay off certain debt before investing.
Investonline’s financial planning process
At Investonline, a qualified financial advisor will work with you using our tailor-made financial planning tools to build the best financial plan for you.
Click here to see our financial planning process
Click here to start your financial plan