Wealth Management: Putting it All Together
You may have a financial plan in place. You may have a retirement strategy. You may even have an idea for how to handle your taxes, both pre- and post-retirement. But how they all work together is how you truly manage wealth.
To understand the power of wealth management, this guide looks at how it can help you find greater clarity, confidence and control in your financial life. This will then lead to creating a customized plan that you can monitor and adjust throughout your life to help ensure you reach your financial goals.
It seems only natural that an abundance of wealth would lead to a different mindset about money. But the reverse can also be true: A different mindset about money could be the key to accumulating an abundance of wealth.
The way you think about money can have a major impact on your financial future – even more than the investments you choose. Your thought patterns around money affect how you make, save and spend money. So, the first step to holistic wealth management is identifying your money relationship and any thought patterns that may be holding you back.
Changing how you think about money can even help you earn more. Sometimes, the only thing preventing you from earning more money is the belief that you can’t earn more money. If you don’t believe you’re capable of earning more money than you already do, you’re less likely to ask for a raise or promotion, or to apply for jobs that might offer an increase in pay.
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Similar to how you think about money, how you feel about money can also impact how you approach your finances. Your feelings about money can stem from any number of past life experiences, such as watching how your parents treated money, or a more recent life experience like dealing with debt or a sudden windfall. Often, these experiences trigger fear or anxiety where money is concerned. By understanding how you feel about money and where those feelings come from, you can increase your financial confidence.
Try asking yourself these questions:
- How does sharing your financial situation with others make you feel?
- How do you feel when conversations turn to money or finance?
- How comfortable are you in making purchase decisions, both big and small?
- How does it feel to be in debt?
- How much time do you spend thinking about money?
Your feelings toward money are neither right nor wrong; they just are. The important thing is to be aware of them and recognize when those feelings may be holding you back from your full financial potential. Remember that money is just a tool. You use it to lead the life you choose. It’s creating that life that is the true goal, not accumulating wealth just for the sake of having money.
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Life is full of uncertainties, as the COVID-19 pandemic so poignantly reminded many of us. When it comes to wealth management and financial planning, these uncertainties can come in many forms, from health and longevity to the financial markets and the economy. Luckily, there are wealth management strategies you can use to prepare for each of these uncertainties.
To prepare for potential health concerns, it’s important to have adequate insurance. This includes both health insurance and disability insurance. As you near retirement, make sure to also think about building a healthcare strategy into your retirement plan. Healthcare costs are one of the biggest expenses many retirees face later in life. Being prepared can go a long way to preventing those costs from exacerbating the second major uncertainty in life: Longevity.
One of the most common concerns among retirees is how to avoid running out of money. This concern is only increasing as lifespans and retirements are lasting longer. To reduce the chances of outliving your money, make sure to maintain a balance in your retirement portfolio. Maintaining portfolio balance can also help mitigate the risks of market and economic uncertainty. It’s also important to recognize that volatility is natural both in the market and the economy. The market goes up and the market goes down; the economy goes through periods of expansion and recession. Planning for this means maintaining enough cash that you don’t need to sell investments during downturns.
These uncertainties highlight the importance of having a financial plan. People without a clear plan are more likely to get derailed by uncertainties or react emotionally rather than logically. The key is how to customize your financial plan so it works based on your goals.
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A truly personalized financial plan is one that is built around your individual goals and situation. Everyone’s lifestyle and dreams are different, so every financial plan should be, too. Some financial strategies use cookie-cutter plans that are barely adjusted to account for unique situations. This can be dangerous.
At PAX Financial Group, we treat every client and plan as a clean slate. We believe that a financial plan should start with examining your current situation in relation to where you want to be, then create strategies to help you get from here to there. We feel that a financial plan should also include a budget that incorporates current and future needs, including debt, as well as a savings and investing plan, and take into account a client’s specific short-, medium- and long-term goals.
At PAX Financial Group, our customized plans are very specific. Each plan has an equally defined strategy for how a client will pay for that new car in three years as it will for how he or she will leave an estate to heirs. Every number is based on an individual situation, such as a client’s earnings, retirement age and life expectancy. Everything in a customized financial plan points back to the individual client.
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Once you have a plan in place, the journey isn’t over. It’s important to track and review your progress along your financial roadmap on a regular basis. As life events happen – such as the birth of a child or a job change, or even just a new hobby or vision for your future – it’s important to revisit your plan and adjust it accordingly.
Your plan should act like a roadmap, with clearly defined goals along the way. These mile markers – which you need for any financial goal – will help determine if you’re still on track. If you find yourself not progressing, it may be time to make a course correction.
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A financial plan should not be a static document. Quite the opposite, your financial plan should be nimble and adaptable. At PAX Financial Group, you can change your plan at any time, and in fact, should adjust it whenever your situation changes. Think of your plan as the best path based on all currently available information. If new information arises that impacts your plan, you can correct your course. Likewise, if something changes in your situation, like a new goal or job, you can correct your course to account for this change.
Even if nothing changes in your current situation, you can make course corrections if you find that you’re not on track to reach your goals. If you miss your savings mile marker, for instance, you can course correct by adjusting your savings or investment strategy. What you should not do is make reactive course corrections in response to stock market volatility or economic projections. Your financial plan should be designed to account for anything the market can throw at you. If you have questions about your plan, talk to your financial advisor.
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Finding clarity, confidence and control in your financial life is empowering, but it can also be challenging. Not to mention the challenges of creating a customized financial plan, this involves tracking your progress toward your goals, and knowing how and when to make course corrections along the way. In short: Financial planning is complicated. This is where a financial advisor can help.
A financial advisor who specializes in wealth management can be a resource and guide throughout your financial life. Wealth management is about more than just the basics of a financial plan. A wealth manager should take a holistic view of your financial life by combining all the financial services you may need into one package. By working with a wealth advisor at PAX Financial Group, you’ll get investment guidance, retirement planning, estate planning and whatever else you need to get your financial life on track and keep it there.
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This material is provided by PAX Financial Group, LLC. The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. The information herein has been derived from sources believed to be accurate. Please note: Investing involves risk, and past performance is no guarantee of future results. Investments will fluctuate and when redeemed may be worth more or less than when originally invested. This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any Federal tax penalty. This is neither a solicitation nor recommendation to purchase or sell any investment or insurance product or service, and should not be relied upon as such. All market indices discussed are unmanaged and are not illustrative of any particular investment. Indices do not incur management fees, costs and expenses, and cannot be invested into directly. All economic and performance data is historical and not indicative of future results.