March 15, 2012 § Leave a comment
Kiss me, I’m half Irish. But none of us, Irish heritage or not, need a leprechaun! Who needs a stinking leprechaun when you have a great financial plan?!
What? You have no financial plan? No problem. Let me tell you the elements of a financial plan.
1.) Goal- The first thing to a good plan is to determine the goal. In our case we are making financial goals. The goal, or goals, can include both long-term and short-term goals, such as retirement planning and even summer vacation or savings goals. Discuss this with your honey and make the goals concrete.
2.) Organize- Where will the money come from to meet the goals? Make a budget, if you don’t already have one, and tweak it heard to squeeze the cash out of various sources. Can you cut back on eating out or expensive coffee treats? Your goal will not get funded without effort on your part and that is step two. You will also need to determine where newly-saved money will go as it grows. Set up accounts and arrange deposits to fund your goals.
3.) DO it- Now that you have goals, have tweaked the budget and set up your accounts, you must fund the accounts. HOW will the money go into the savings accounts? From where will it come and how often will cash be deposited? The more automatic you make the deposits, the more certain will be your eventual outcome. So if possible, have a system that will work without your additional effort to process your money into the accounts that are funding your goals, such as direct deposit. Your advisor can help or you can set up directly with mutual funds, brokerage accounts and financial institutions. Even if it’s less than you’d hoped to deposit, regurlar contributions add up; you are making progress! And how awesome is that?
4.) Monitor, monitor, monitor – Don’t let years go by before you check on your progress. Know what’s happening wih some regularity; if needed be every week or month. Depening on the goal and the length of time needed to reach it, make an appointment with yourself or your advisor to monitor your progress. Be prepared for the temptation to get off course.There will be bumps in the road and these may make your evaluations occur before you planned. But life is predictably unpredictable. Expect bumps.
See? You don’t need any luck! You’ve got a beautiful financial plan that will get you where you want to go. You’re doing an awesome job.