Top 5 Reasons to See a Financial Counselor
An estimated 75% of Americans aren’t developing a financial strategy and the same is likely true of adults around the world. Trying to account for and grow your wealth can seem intimidating, but you don’t have to do it alone.
When it comes to meeting with a financial counselor, the first thing to realize is that you can take this initiative no matter where your finances currently are. In fact, setting up a meeting when you’re not yet meeting your financial goals makes a lot of sense.
A financial counselor can make managing your finances easier and less stressful. With their professional advice, you can set and meet goals that you never thought you could achieve.
Not convinced that now is a good time to see a financial counselor? Read on for five common and surprising reasons that you should consider seeking financial advice from a professional.
1. You Want to Start a Family
As you can imagine, your cost of living will go up when you add one or more new members to your family. However, you may not realize just how much that is.
Let’s take a closer look at the facts and figures. In Australia, a middle-income family can expect to fork out over $800,000 to raise two children. That’s an extraordinary amount of money and as costs rise each year, so does this figure.
So, what should an Australian couple do before having kids? Set up a meeting with a group like Next Generation Advice to not only discuss reasonable budgeting but also find ways to grow the wealth you already have. Plus, a financial counselor can help you to set up accounts and investment funds for things like sending your child to college.
2. You’re Making Moves in Real Estate
Buying or selling a home is one of the biggest financial transactions most adults will make in their lifetime. When you’re handling that much money and dealing with things like loans and interest rates, it’s extremely beneficial to have some guidance.
If you’re thinking about buying, don’t start the house hunt until you’ve talked to a financial counselor. By looking at your income, assets, and existing debt, a financial advisor can tell you how much “house” you can buy. They can also explain different mortgage options and help you find the best home loan you can get.
If you’re getting ready to sell, you have a little more time to set your financial appointment. However, we still recommend talking to an advisor soon after selling your home, if not earlier. That way, you can seek guidance on what to do with any equity you’ve built up that might help you to meet future goals.
3. You’re Going Through a Divorce or Starting a Second Marriage
Going through a divorce comes with a lot of emotional turmoil. During that time period, you also have to make some important decisions about shared assets.
For example, you will have to determine how much money you will need to maintain your current lifestyle. You will also have to decide how to split any assets and redistribute current shared funds. For many people who have already started planning for the future, this entails redetermining how to stay on track to meet your financial goals or shifting the goalposts.
When you’re starting a second marriage, finances once again come into play. Will you make your new spouse the beneficiary of any of your current assets like a 401k or life insurance plan? Does either of you have children from a previous marriage that you need to consider when settling your finances within your new marriage?
In both situations, having a financial counselor in your corner can make a world of difference, smoothing out the edges of a very stressful process.
4. You’ve Come Into Money
Seeing a financial counselor isn’t just a good idea when you don’t have the funds you want to live your ideal life. A financial counselor is also helpful when you need help with finance management over the money you have suddenly acquired.
A common example of this is receiving an inheritance or even winning the lottery. Coming into a large sum of money can feel exciting and many are tempted to alter their lifestyles completely as a result. The problem with this, however, is that it won’t be sustainable unless you invest some of that money to carry you into the future.
A financial advisor can help you use the money you’ve come into to set yourself up for success now and in the future. They can also prepare you for any immediate changes, such as a change in tax brackets.
5. You’re Preparing for Retirement
Don’t wait until you’re getting close to retirement to start preparing. The earlier you start working with a financial counselor, the better off you’ll be when it comes time to retire.
It’s difficult to imagine how much money you’ll need to live on when you retire. It’s even more difficult to parse out where that money will come from, and building up a savings account often isn’t enough. Schedule an appointment with a financial counselor this year to start preparing for retirement no matter what stage of your career you’re in.
Set Up a Meeting With a Financial Counselor This Year
Too many people are failing to plan out their financial future. As a result, they may not be prepared for some of life’s major changes, including things like having a child, buying a house, or retiring. By working with a financial counselor, you can put yourself in a position to succeed in life and achieve financial security every step of the way.
Looking for more active steps you can take to improve your financial management? Take a look around to find out how to manage your finances now, tomorrow, and in the distant future.