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Many believe a financial plan is a cake solely full of just investments. But it’s made up of many slices of cake including a Budget, Risk Management, Tax Strategies, Estate Planning, Investments and lastly Emotion & Behavior Management.

As a financial adviser from Rockhampton, I’m writing to explain to you what a financial plan really is and how important it is to have a plan in place.

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Control

I will share what I mean when I say, ‘don’t focus on what you can’t control’.

Personally, I can’t control what the market is going to do, and anyone that can, well they wouldn’t be working now would they.

What I can control however is – how much money you want in retirement, how much tax you can pay, how much income you will earn and where your assets will go in the event of your passing.

Budget

Firstly, let’s focus on your budget. I find your budget to be the foundation for any financial plan, if you don’t have a budget, how will you know if you have enough money? How will you know if the funds you, have will last to your life expectancy?

I endeavor to spend time with you focus on your budget and get it correct, prior to moving on to your individual financial goals. Once the budget established, then the rest can flow from there.

Risk management

Most clients that I’ve come across in my career so far, have all been invested in what they construe as conservative, and the truth be told, they may well be.

Many clients have said to me, ‘I don’t like to take risk’. Which is fine, but this is an area where we can work together to achieve the best results. I like to call it the sleep test, if you can sleep well at night, then my job is done. But if you toss and turn, and check what is happening in your portfolio daily, then I haven’t explained myself clearly, and we need to talk some more.

I ensure all my clients, that I only invest in a portfolio that is 100% matched to the risk you’re willing to take. During the initial fact find session, I ask all clients a series of 12 questions, which will determine the risk you willing to take. From there, I work through your risk profile with you and only when we’re both happy, will I then invest your funds according to your risk profile.

Tax strategies

Who wants to pay ZERO tax?
For most that is the dream, it doesn’t have to be a dream, it can become your reality. That’s right, we can put you in a position of not having to pay any tax at all.

However, you must crawl before you can walk. Tax as a financial planning strategy certainly can be controlled, we are not in the business of avoiding tax, that would be against the law. Nevertheless, we can assist you in lowering your tax payable.

Estate planning

The big question many ask, is where will my funds go after I pass away?

Many believe that this is taken care of by their will, however this is not entirely true.  Superannuation is outside of your estate, and super funds can often be overlooked.  Most superannuation funds offer a binding or non-binding death benefit nomination.

A binding death benefit nomination is a written direction made by you to the Trustee that sets out the dependants and/or legal personal representative, as decided by you, who are to receive your benefit in the event of your death.

A non-binding death benefit nomination is a written request made by you that suggests to the Trustee the beneficiaries that may receive your benefit in the event of your death. The Trustee has the final say as to who should receive your death benefits

Nominations to a spouse or dependent child can often lead to the funds being paid tax free. Not so the case for non-dependents.

Estate Planning is an essential part of any financial plan and important to get in place whilst you are healthy and in control.

Finally, investments

By now, you can see a lot of tasks need to be completed before we even reach your investment strategy.

An underlying investment in well diversified portfolios is the engine that keeps your savings ticking over. How much grunt you put in that engine is really up to you.

At Oracle, we offer a range of investment options and mixes to suit every risk profile and we tailor our investment options to suit you, no matter what stage of life you are at.

Summing up

As a financial adviser, we’re not just picking the winners or the losers, we ensure that you realise your financial goals. I expect my clients to have an idea of what they want to do with your money, and then it is up to us to devise the plan, and ultimately hold them accountable. 

Sure, things come up that can change the way we think, our lives and the way we deal with money. With a financial adviser and a financial plan however, it really is a piece of cake!

Written by Jason Fagg
Financial Adviser
Oracle Rockhampton

Get in touch with us today for complimentary consultation to discuss your financial position and we can provide you advice tailored to your unique situation.

Important information – Oracle Advisory Group makes no representation or warranties as to the accuracy or completeness of any statement in it including, without limitation, any forecasts. The information in this document is general information only and is not based on the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular investor. An investor should, before making any investment decisions, consider the appropriateness of the information in this document, and seek their own professional advice. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance. The information provided in the document is current as the time of publication.
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