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Financial planning can feel like a minefield; you know that taking care of your assets and planning for the future is vital, but don’t know where to start!

As global wealth management experts, Chase Buchanan has created this guide to help share the value of financial planning, and how to get started.

Financial Planning in a Nutshell

Every one of us wants to have firm control over our finances. Knowing that we are getting the best from our investments, making wise decisions, and have prepared for our future goals is a compelling target to work towards.

A financial plan sets out what your situation is now, where you would like to be, and helps to establish the steps needed to reach your goals.

Creating a plan may seem like a daunting task, but is something we can all do. Try setting aside some time within your schedule to allow yourself the space to focus on the job at hand, and work through some initial steps to clarify your current situation.

This can include tasks such as:

  • Setting yourself a budget – how much do you spend in the average month? Which of your regular costs are essential, and which are discretionary?
  • How much income are you making? Work out your average monthly income, as well as any annual revenue, so you have a crystal clear understanding of what your cash flows look like.
  • Taking a look at your credit score; are there any old debts you can clear off, or any updates required to reflect your financial standing?
  • What are your assets worth? Are you up to date with reports on your investments, or perhaps you would benefit from a property valuation to get to grips with what your asset portfolio is now worth?
  • Decide what you would like to achieve. Are you planning to relocate? Have university fees to prepare for? Looking forward to a relaxing retirement?

These may seem like obvious considerations, but with all the challenges of our hectic lives it is easy to lose track of your finances, and feel adrift when it comes time to make big decisions.

The Importance of Budgeting

Budgets aren’t the most exciting things, but when planning to relocate, or evaluating our financial position, it is essential to know just what your expenses look like.

Particularly for expats, or those considering retiring to other countries, knowing what you have to spend and what sort of costs will be associated with maintaining your standard of living is key to securing a comfortable future.

Some of the most common questions to ask yourself:

  • How much do I have to live on per month?
  • Is there a smarter way to invest my funds for a safer or higher return?
  • What is my property currently worth?
  • How much tax will I have to pay on overseas income?
  • Will my pension be impacted if I move abroad?
  • How can I budget for life events, such as weddings or education fees?

Every one of these questions is valid and important, so having a clear understanding of your financial position and where changes need to be made to support your life goals is crucial.

Pitfalls to Watch Out for in Financial Planning

The primary purpose of planning is to ensure you know what resources you have available, and how to best use them to reach your aspirations.

However, there are pitfalls to watch out for, and to be aware of when you are creating your plan:

  • Inflation – how will your asset values, or your planned expenses, change in time?
  • Interest – if you have investments or savings, what interest rates should you plan for?
  • Risk – do you need to make changes to your portfolio to ensure you have a stable investment structure?
  • Exchange rates – will exchange rates move significantly up or down, and how will this impact your overseas income, investment returns or living expenses?

The ideal solution to manage all of these variables is to consult a professional financial adviser.  Your finances are important, and making crucial life decisions is a significant undertaking.

Using an expert helps alleviate all of the time and stress associated with trying to create a meaningful budget, and opens up access to a world of knowledge and expertise to help you make the right decisions for your circumstances.

How Can a Wealth Management Expert Help?

Wealth management is about more than advising on the best investments to make – having a financial adviser working with you creates a secure foundation from which to make decisions with confidence.

Wealth management expertise helps to:

  • Guide you with planning and budgeting to meet your goals
  • Understand your personal finances and aspirations to strategise with you
  • Recommend solutions and products to enhance your asset value
  • Advise on the best options and decisions to support your objectives
  • Steer your investments down the most profitable routes

Financial advisers combine all the essential fields of knowledge to enhance the performance of your asset portfolio, and to provide you with personal advice tailored around your wealth management needs.

Where Can I Find Guidance on Financial Planning?

There are multiple reasons why you might wish to seek professional financial advice, or would benefit from using a wealth management advisor:

  • You are concerned about your net worth, and how to protect this in the future
  • You are planning a life change or relocation, and need to plan carefully
  • You have significant expenses on the horizon and need assistance with budgeting
  • You are nearing retirement, and require expert advice on the best income structures
  • You hold investments and want to maximise the achievable returns
  • You would like to have a firmer understanding of your finances and how to manage them

A financial adviser can help with every one of these scenarios, with a long-term supportive relationship to deliver continued, bespoke support as and when you need it.

Chase Buchanan is a highly regulated global wealth management company, supporting expatriates around the world from our regulated European headquarters. Every one of our financial advisers is highly qualified and accredited, offering the ultimate peace of mind that your assets and future are under control, with your personal expert wealth management partners working by your side. For help with your financial planning, contact us today.