If you’re like most people, your daily life is focused on your immediate needs and those of your family. You may think about the future, but the thought may be just a passing one, as day-to-day concerns like work, errands or taking the kids to Little League practice take up most of your time.
One day your children will leave home and have lives of their own, and you may want to stop working.A financial plan can help you prepare for these events and the others that will inevitably occur, whether you anticipate them or not.
How can a financial plan help?
A financial plan can help you:
Assess your financial situation by helping you track income and expenses, establish an emergency fund, and determine your overall net worth.
- Save for major expenses like funding a child’s education, buying a house or car, or developing a cash reserve for special occasions like weddings and vacations.
- Plan for your retirement by estimating your retirement income and expenses and the value of government programs. Then you can begin to determine the amount you need to save to meet your retirement goals.
- Assess your risk tolerance and develop an asset allocation strategy.
- Plan to reduce your taxes, project the effect of income taxes, and develop a tax-deferred strategy.
- Protect you and your family against financial crisis should you become disabled or die.
- Plan your estate to ensure your assets are distributed the way you desire, fund estate taxes, and minimize their effects where possible.
- Finally, a financial plan can give you a clear picture of where you are, a strategy about where you are going, and peace of mind about your future. It’s never too early to start.