It always takes me by surprise when I find out just how long people manage to live with their money worries before seeking help. It’s almost as though they’re hoping their financial issues will be resolved automatically.
A financial advisor, or in more serious cases, a debt counsellor, should be able to help. After all, this is what they are trained to do. Naturally, as with any other service, there will be a cost involved. However, potential clients often balk at the cost, and choose to muddle on by themselves. Usually to their own detriment. I’ve had potential clients decline my services because of the cost, only to have them return a year later, much worse off than they were at our first consultation, having lost far more that what the repair would have cost them. If you find yourself in financial difficulty, outside help is usually the only solution. You should view the cost as an investment to help get you out of trouble.
If someone approaches us for help, we issue them with an invoice. This covers the costs of their first 12 months. Once the invoice is settled, the financial planning process starts. While we provide advice, support and guide them on their financial planning journey, the onus is on the client to do the work.
We get to know how our clients approach their finances. We also try to understand their personal relationship with money – sometimes we learn bad habits from our parents and these habits tend to haunt us later in life.
We verify all debt and assets and draw up a fair value balance sheet. Each asset will also be analysed to ensure that it is productive, and worth holding on to.
That exercise is followed by an accurate cash flow account, or budget. We also advise our clients that they need to set up an emergency savings fund. This is one of the tools we use to protect you against any nasty surprises life may throw at you. This may be something as serious as retrenchment, or as bothersome as your washing machine imploding.
Money worries can be fixed and you do not have to go it alone. If you would like to hear more about our approach to financial planning, contact our office for an obligation free meeting.