Our Quick and Easy Checklist to Help Develop Your Financial Plan
Over the years, we have often been asked for a quick and easy checklist that outlines the steps necessary to engage the process of developing your financial plan. As such, we feel this article will really help with your preparation and have developed 14 key steps for you to follow.
The first step is identifying your goals and objectives. It’s critical to know what’s important to you and what you want to accomplish.
Review your budget. Even though while in training a lot of doctors operate on a cash in, cash out environment, it’s critical to continually review your budget and your spending and ensure you don’t fall into bad habits.
Establish an emergency reserve. You want to have that rainy day reserve set aside in the event something comes up unexpected. We typically recommend splitting this into tier one and tier two. Three months of fixed expenses in tier one, and then another three months into a tier two type of environment.
Determine your children’s college education funding objectives.
Determine retirement objectives.
Consider parents and intergenerational planning. Specifically, are mom and dad going to be living down the hall from you?
Assess appropriate risk management strategies. There are a number of different types of insurance designed to protect you for your appropriate and comfortable risks.
Assess asset protection strategies. You have your Med mail, that’s great. What are you doing on a personal level to make sure that what you have stays yours?
Consider your housing expenses. How much should spend on a home? What tax efficiencies should be considered? Don’t become house poor.
Become educated. Obviously, all of our clients are educated, but I’m saying specifically to become educated on some of the foundational items that are pertinent to the financial planning process. Make sure along those lines to have the appropriate resources in place with other advisors.
Develop the blueprint and action plan. Once you know what your goals are, once you know what your cash flow is, it’s time to develop an actual plan.
Initiate the 20% guideline. Although we’re not fans of general rules of thumb, we do feel that a good strategy right out of the gates is to carve out 20% of your net income and set it aside.
Implement the plan. Maintaining flexibility within a baseline.
Monitor and adjust the plan accordingly.
If you would like to learn more about this subject or receive a free quote then please contact us and we’ll be happy to help.
By Anthony C. Williams, CWS, ChFC, MRFC, CLU | Investment Advisor Representative | President & Founding Partner of Mosaic Financial Associates & Orthopaedist Advisory Group | Securities and advisory services offered through Cetera Advisors LLC, Member FINRA/SIPC, a broker/dealer and a Registered Investment Advisor. Cetera is under separate ownership from any other named entity.