August 27, 2019

‘What if?’ Financial plans vs products

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As a financial planning firm we get involved in a lot of sophisticated financial analysis. We crunch numbers in spreadsheets and similar tools with the same passion as kids (and now more recently many adults) play video games. Sad you might say that we prefer Excel to the latest PlayStation or Xbox release but the reality is this is what our clients expect. If we can’t get excited about our clients finances, then we shouldn’t be their adviser. The importance of financial planning, therefore, also gets us excited.

Nevertheless, there are always little things (and sometimes some very big things) that we sometimes need to remind them as a matter of good financial review. At this time of the year when thoughts turn to the incoming year it’s probably helpful to reflect on some basics. Included among them are:

What if I didn’t wake up this morning?

Does my family have enough money to live on for the future?

Have I figured out how much is enough?

Have they immediate access to sufficient cash to pay bills at a minimum if the business or the life assurance is slow in generating cash?

Who would care for my children?

How should my children be influenced and educated in my absence?

Do I have a Will?

Can my family find my Will easily?

Do they know who my solicitor is and who my Executors are?

What would happen to my business?

Who would run it in my absence?

Is my business worth anything?

If my business has a value, who would pay for the value that I have grown it to?

How would they pay for the buy out of my share of the business?

What if I don’t have enough money when I get to retirement?

How much do I need to be saving?

Is a specific sum enough?

Will my lifestyle suffer if I don’t get there?

What will this mean to me and my family?

What if I already have enough?

Why am I still working?

Could I stop work and start living my dreams now?

Am I certain I won’t run out of money?

Can I give some of my money away?

Many people think that financial planning is about sorting out a life assurance policy or deciding which pension provider is best. Maybe it’s about picking investment winners? No. Financial products are just that – products. They are merely enablers to help you achieve and maintain yours and your family’s lifestyle. The importance of financial planning is in discovering and implementing long lasting change that you can tangibly see.

The most important part of a financial planner’s job is working with you to answer these “what if” questions because that’s what really matters, not which product you use. If you need to discuss any of these important issues just pick up the phone at 01-8455827 or email us at

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