In the simplest terms, financial planning is making sure you have all your ducks in a row. In simpler terms, it’s making sure you have enough money to live comfortably and meet your needs as well as those of your family. As simple as this may sound, it is a rather complex and intricate process. Financial planning isn’t just about making sure you have enough money to pay the rent or mortgage; it goes further to ensure you have sufficient money for all the things you want and need. So what exactly does financial planning involve?
In basic terms, a financial planning process is a detailed examination of an individual’s present pay structure and future financial circumstances by the use of current and forecasted future income, assets and expenditure. The process is undertaken in order to help individuals make informed financial decisions that will be beneficial to them now as well as in the future. While this may seem like a rather broad outline of what financial planning involves, it is important to be aware that there are actually several key facets and components that make up this process. If an individual wants to ensure that he has a clear view of his future finances, he must establish a clear and concise picture of his financial situation at the current time along with those of his immediate future.
One of the first steps to take when setting off on a course to achieve financial planning is developing a comprehensive and effective investment strategy. This will entail creating a list of all the assets you currently own and those you are going to acquire shortly. You should also identify all your current financial investments such as mutual funds and other such investments. Once you have developed this comprehensive roadmap, it is important to map out a short term and long term strategy to achieve the results you want.
A financial planning process will not be successful without identifying your long term and short term goals. Your goals will guide you in determining which investments are right for you as well as which types of bonds or mutual funds are best suited for fulfilling your goals. For example, if you want to create a retirement fund, you need to determine how much money you want to save for retirement and how quickly you wish to reach your goals. If you want to invest in various investments that will yield a high interest rate, you need to determine whether these investments will earn you enough interest to generate your savings goals or whether they will need additional investment along the way to provide you with a comfortable retirement fund balance. All of these factors will play a role in determining the types of bonds and mutual funds you will invest in as well as their yields.
The second component to financial planning is setting goals for your personal financial planning. As previously mentioned, these two goals should coincide with your long term and short term goals in order to effectively achieve your savings and life goals. When you identify your personal life goals, write them down on a piece of paper and place them in a location where you will always be able to see them. It is also important to think carefully about the details of your personal financial planning so that your goals will become a reality instead of just an abstract idea on your paper.
Finally, you will want to look at your financial planning calculator in order to determine which investments are right for you at this time. A financial planner can help you to decide which investments are the best for you based on the information they gather through tax returns, real estate market data, and personal information. However, using a financial planning calculator is not sufficient enough by itself to make sound investment decisions. You must consult a financial planner in order to make accurate projections regarding your investments’ success, longevity, and risk tolerance for each specific investment option. This consultation will go a long way towards ensuring that you are well-prepared for whatever financial challenges may come over the course of your lifetime.