The Financial Planning Process
The financial planning process occurs in 4 stages:
Stage 1: Establishing where you are now. A professional adviser will want to know details of all of your assets, liabilities, income and expenditure Once this has been established it is possible to move on to the next stage.
Stage 2: Identifying your objectives and preferences. These goals must be S.M.A.R.T. – specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely. Examples might be : to retire to U.K. at age 50 with an income of £5,000 per month in todays money’s worth. Preferences include your views on risk, currency and ethical or religious parameters you may wish to apply to any investment.
Stage 3: Identifying potential action that could be done to achieve the objective and selecting the most appropriate route for your circumstances. A good adviser will provide you a written report identifying potential solutions and why they were discounted in favour of the recommended option.
Stage 4: Once the recommended solution has been implemented it is essential to review it to check it remains: relevant to your circumstances; on target and the best value for money. This last stage is especially important in financial services. It is a highly competitive and innovative market with client goals which take decades to achieve.