By Daniella Rand
Wealth management is not rocket science. Nor is it a walk in the park. It’s best done in close consultation with a seasoned financial professional — someone sworn to act in your best interests and provide bespoke advice that preserves and grows your wealth while ensuring you don’t miss out on any of life’s special moments.
Your financial professional will no doubt lay out some ground rules to help you manage your wealth on your own, as well. These five are particularly important for long-term investors to follow. Together, they form the foundation of a secure future for you and your loved ones.
1. Keep a Close Eye on Your Employer-Sponsored Pension and Retirement Accounts
Do you know how much of each paycheck you invest in an employer-sponsored retirement account, such as a 401(k)? Can you identify the assets and allocations in those accounts? Do you know the details of your employer-sponsored pension, if you’re fortunate enough to have access to one?
The answers to these questions are important. Review your plan literature today and make adjustments as needed.
2. Understand Your Tax Obligations (And Work With Your Financial Advisor to Minimize Them)
Your tax preparer or family accountant is the best person to talk through about your overall tax obligations. But you should also work with a financial advisor to create an investment plan that minimizes your tax burden. There’s almost certainly more that you can do on this point.
3. Get a Better Grasp on Your Household Spending (And Adjust As Necessary)
The golden rule of household finances is this: Don’t spend more than you earn. If it’s been some time since you’ve evaluated your family’s budget, now’s your opportunity to trim some fat.
4. Make Sure You’re Protected Against the Unknown
Insurance is a crucial safeguard against the unknown. At minimum, you and your spouse should have life insurance (term or whole, depending on your needs), health insurance, and disability insurance. Speak with your financial professional or insurance agent for details pertinent to your personal situation.
5. Complete the Estate Planning Process
What will happen to your assets when you pass on? Have you designated someone to act on your behalf should you become incompetent to make legally binding decisions? Are your heirs financially prepared for a future without you?
The estate planning process is designed to satisfy these questions, and many more. It’s too important to put off for another year.
Take Control of Your Wealth
As we’ve seen, taking control of your wealth is easier than you might imagine. You have the power to begin the process today.
Where should you make your first move? Start by speaking with a seasoned financial advisor with a proven track record of helping clients from all walks of life develop strong, stable financial plans. Talk to this person about your needs, goals, hopes, fears, and tolerance for investing risk. This conversation, and subsequent conversations that elaborate on its contents, will result in the creation of a customized wealth management plan that sees you and your family through to a long, happy retirement — while providing crucial peace of mind that your heirs will be cared for after you’ve left this world.
Are you ready to take control of your wealth? Your future begins with a conversation.