Gaming your financial strategy
Published 3:13 pm Friday, March 15, 2019
Thinking about retirement might seem unpleasant. As you budget your monthly bills, you might feel as if you simply don’t have enough to handle both your day-to-day affairs and still save for the future. It’s certainly true that it’s a challenge. That said, with some careful thought and a little imagination, you can probably think of ways to make what once felt impossible, more possible.
The strategic approach is known to grandmasters, generals, and sports coaches the world over. Simply put, it’s a matter of looking over your resources and options, then taking steps to use them to your greatest advantage. Strategy doesn’t guarantee any particular outcome, but it can help you make arrangements for all manner of financial situations, both positive and negative.
You probably have some questions. That’s good; asking questions and seeking answers is a healthy beginning to a strategy.
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Isn’t financial strategy for rich people? Not necessarily. Building that strategy could potentially give you a boost toward a better future for you and those you love. Whether it’s just you, as a single person, or you and your family, giving some thought to your finances could be all that is standing between real life and pursuing a dream. It could also potentially be what prevents a dire financial situation from becoming even worse. All by just thinking a few moves ahead.1
Am I ready for this? Absolutely. Financial strategy is just a way of thinking ahead. If you’re reading this, you’re already thinking ahead. This means that you are ready to be thinking about putting money aside for retirement, contemplating insurance choices, setting up beneficiaries, creating or updating a will, and even designating a financial power of attorney and health care proxy as well as drawing up a living will.2
These topics might seem “far away,” in some distant future, or even fill you with a little anxiety or dread. That anxiety, though, is rooted in the uncertainties in life; you never know what’s coming next. At least with a strategy in action, you have some things in place for your family. If it still seems like too much, it’s good to know that you can reach out to professionals for help.
Do I have to do it all by myself? You have many choices when it comes to building a financial strategy. You could educate yourself and go it alone. It’s certainly cheaper, but you’re probably thinking more about all the things you need to learn and less about all the things you might miss by going the do-it-yourself route. There are also computer-based options, which can be affordable, but you definitely lose the advantages of human help.2
Finally, there is the financial professional. You might think of a financial professional as a man wearing a green visor, crunching numbers for some cartoon billionaire. The truth is that there are all sorts of financial professionals who specialize in working with people at every income level and from all walks of life. Some financial professionals charge flat rates or by the hour, and if you find a fee-only financial professional, you can rest assured that they aren’t working on commission.2,3
You have many choices when it comes to who you do business with – your financial professional will be able to talk you through investments, financial issues in the news, working toward your own goals, and ultimately, help you think a few moves ahead.