For most seeking financial advice, it’s like going to the dentist. You know you have to do it but it’s something we all put off and one of those things we don’t like to do.
Especially now given the current the Royal Commission uncovering some very inappropriate practices to the point where they could be considered criminal. I’ve got say I’ve been bitterly disappointed with the way some parts of the industry has behaved with the blatant disregard for the interests of their clients.
One thing is for sure it will weed out those that should not be in the industry, making it far better for consumers to seek advice with safety. There is a large group in the industry that are changing the face of advice, making a real difference in their client’s lives, helping them achieve what they have dreamed off and saving them from making financial mistakes.
It can be a daunting experience, you’re vulnerable, sharing all that you are looking to achieve, what’s gone wrong in the past and feeling at times like you are being judged for your actions.
It should not be like this.
It should full of anticipation, talking about all that you want to achieve in life, putting kids through private school, having the home of your dreams, going on regular holidays, paying down your home loan and feeling financially free, living a lifestyle full of great experiences and ultimately reaching a point in life when working is an option for you.
To me that’s not daunting, that’s exciting and if you ever find your in a position where you are being judged, walk away immediately.
Having said that there are many myths that people get wrong when it comes to getting advice.
We bust them for you here…
1. You have to be rich to seek advice!!!
False, absolutely not. You do have to be rich to seek advice.
It was interesting in a recent survey I was reading where the question was asked at what level of assets would you seek advice?
It was interesting, the number around $200k in assets.
However, when those people were asked what level of assets they needed to have to seek advice it was higher than $200k. So, in other words, they thought they needed to be rich to seek advice.
The bottom line is you do not need to be rich to seek and benefit from advice. Advice can be extremely valuable for all people at different stages of life.
In fact, seeking advice as early as possible is quite possibly the best investment you’ll ever make.
Achieving financial freedom comes down to three things, Earnings, Savings & Investment:-
- To achieve financial freedom you need to generate excess (spending less than you earn)
- A good spending plan will do this
- Pay yourself first and live off the rest
- You require regular savings (we suggest 10% of your income)
- Those savings need to be invested
- Invest on a regular basis
- Those investments will grow over time
- Those investments will start generating income
- Those investments and income will provide your financial freedom
Like most things in life, to achieve it requires a plan that takes into account your personal lifestyle preferences and timeframes.
What does your’s look like?
2. They are only going to sell me something
Sure, in the past there have been advisers that would only try to sell you a product. Although there are some still out there, most are providing sound advice that is helping their clients achieve financial freedom and live a great life.
I’ve had clients who have said exactly that, previous advisers they had gone to see, their only interest was to sell them a product and were not interested in what the client was really looking for. I feel really disappointed when I hear this, it should not be this way.
A great adviser will not even entertain the discussion of a product until they have adequately investigated you are looking to achieve.
A great adviser will start by asking questions around what you want your lifestyle to look like now and into the future, find out any roadblocks that may be in the way and craft solutions to move you forward at a faster rate while taking into account your personal preferences.
If you have made the effort to be sitting in front of an adviser, there is a reason for that, and that needs to addressed first and foremost.
3. I can do it all for myself.
Really, let’s be honest, how’s that working for you now?
Can you answer these questions?
Do you know your number?
Do you know how you are going to get there?
What do you need to save each year to get there?
Do you know how far away you are?
Is your family going to financially ok if you suffer an illness that stops you from working, suffer a trauma or pass away prematurely?
What’s you’re actual plan (and I mean detailed, specific tactics for achieving it) for achieving your aspirations?
Sure, you might be able to get by, google a little or even read a book to get the basic understanding. My question to you is do you really want to be eating into valuable time with family and other things that matter more to you?
Sure, you’ll get by, you might achieve what you want eventually, but if you want to achieve faster results you employ experienced people to help you get faster results.
Why do you think so many people these days have personal trainers?
They need someone with experience, someone who’ll prevent them from making the mistakes most make when trying to get fit and someone that will hold them accountable to their goal.
Do you want to buy time?
Just think what a great adviser could help you achieve? More time to create great memories and experiences…
4) Advice is expensive?
Compared to what?
What’s the cost of not getting advice?
Over the years I have come across many people who made decisions without seeking advice and it has cost them thousands and in a number of cases hundreds of thousands of dollars.
You are buying time and expertise to shortcut and fast track your journey.
If you’re one that already outsources things in your life such as house cleaning, gardening, cleaning the pool, dog grooming just to name a few then you can afford to outsource your financial planning.
You could quite easily get great advice on the low end for similar costs to having a weekly cleaner come in.
Let’s look at an example.
You have a cleaner that comes in weekly and that cost is $120 pw ($480 pm, approx $ 5,780).
You could get a great advice for that and if you are able to claim a tax deduction for the advice, then it’s even less.
5) Advisers only advise on investments?
In the past this may have been true, however in the age of technology advice is far greater than just investments.
Yes, investments form part of the equation, however, it’s more about helping people make the right financial decisions (rather than bad financial decisions) and optimising their postion based on their journey and the experiences they are wanting to have through their life.
Great advisers help with education around the complexities of finance, defining what it is you are looking to achieve in life, a sounding board when making decisions, helping with transitions and generally being there when you have questions.
They help you get crystal clear about what type of lifestyle you want, how to maintain it and build wealth while navigating the complex world of finance.
6) I don’t need to start until I’m older?
Sure, if you want to live life with regret.
It’s just like creating a new year’s resolution. I’m going to get fit and lose weight and it never happens.
The knowledge I have gained from working with many pre-retirees and retirees for many years is that most have regret about not doing enough earlier when it came to their finances.
Some have had to work longer than they wanted, some had to rein in their expectations and some suffered an unfortunate illness that stopped them from working prematurely which meant they were not in the financial position they had hoped, they had to compromise.
Sure, you may not have a retirement date in mind but wouldn’t it be great to know you had enough and work was an option. I have a number of clients in this position right now, work is just an option for them.
We only live once, so why not make the most of it…
It’s amazing how making smaller changes earlier can make such a difference in the years ahead…
7) Aren’t all advisers the same?
Here’s the thing, advisers are people too.
They all have different styles and expertise.
Any adviser you work with, you need to feel comfortable. Using the have a beer test is a good one. You don’t need them to be your friend (although over time you get to know each other very well) but you would happily have a drink with them.
Choose your adviser carefully, make sure they are the right fit for you, it must feel just right, just like a good fitting pair of jeans, too tight and you are just going to be uncomfortable and regret buying them.
8) Advisers only want to make money from you!
Sure, advisers run a business and those businesses need to generate a profit. You want them to around for a long time. But for the good advisers out there, it’s more than just about money.
Ask your potential adviser why they do what they do.
For instance, I treat all my initial new client meetings as a fit exercise. I don’t go in there thinking I am going to take them on as a client. I will help them gain a clear understanding of what they are looking for and the tactics they should employ to move closer to their aspirations.
I only offer to take on clients if I believe I can help them truly lead a great life full of great experiences.
To be honest out of every 5 new client meetings, generally 3 will become clients and the other two will walk away with a game plan to move them forward.
Yes, we make money from giving advice but the biggest kick I get is seeing clients achieve greatness in their life.
Here are what some of my clients are up too:-
- On a sailing adventure indefinitely sailing the South Pacific, Asia and hopefully the rest of the world
- Started a B & B
- Retired and helping a friend with an art gallery
- Working in the US while building assets to retire at age 60 to pursue other interests
- Completing travel to their dream destinations
- Helping their kids out financially
- A couple starting their wealth journey, home paid off, now looking at starting a family, with ambitions of upgrading their home and putting their future kids into a good school
There are many more stories I could tell, but this is what I get a kick out off and I feel privileged to be helping these people on their journey, I love hearing the successes and the aspirations that get ticked off along the way. They are my why.
So, when selecting an adviser ask their why.
Apologies about the length of this post, I love what I do and I think it’s important these myths are busted. There are many more people that require the assistance of a great adviser so they don’t suffer from financial regret.
Have I missed a myth you want busted? Feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll bust that for you.
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Make it a great Life!
Challenging the Status Quo!
Glenn Doherty – CFP – Founder & Financial Organiser at Jigsaw Private Wealth
Mob: 0401 253 729
Advice Disclaimer: Any reference in this publication to the provision of advice refers to advice of a generic nature, and should not be taken as product or investment recommendations. Before any action is taken based on the information provided, independent financial advice from a licensed financial adviser should be sought. Financial Freedom Project Pty Ltd ATF GA & DC Doherty Family Trust Trading as Jigsaw Private Wealth is a Corporate Authorised Representative of Exelsuper Advice Pty Ltd. The information contained in this publication is of a factual nature only and is not intended to constitute financial product advice. Information is current as at June 2018. This is an online information blog. It does not imply an offering of securities.