A Woman’s Touch to Financial Wellness
In an industry still dominated by men, many women are looking for an advisor who understands their unique needs. Whether you are a corporate executive, medical professional, entrepreneur, or seeker of a different path, who better to understand your unique needs than a female advisor?
Just as you put other facets of wellness prominently in your life, your financial wellness is just as important. Please use the checklist below to evaluate your financial wellness. While evaluating your wellness, think to yourself: What are my goals? What do I need to do to make them happen? Our team of CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERS™ are here to provide a complimentary consultation to help you live the life you want.
1. Track Monthly Spending: Be knowledgeable about what is coming in and what is going out. At the end of the month, review fixed costs and those that arise sporadically. This will provide a clearer picture of ways to save money and cut unnecessary expenses.
2. Evaluate Debt: Create a list of ongoing debts. Review the interest rate associated with each to determine if it is fixed or variable. Decide if consolidating or refinancing will provide some relief to these ongoing payments.
3. Request Yearly Credit Report: A yearly evaluation of credit is important in determining factors that could affect one’s credit score, as well as the identification of any fraudulent activity. Remaining in good credit standing is essential when anticipating purchases such as leasing a car or securing a mortgage.
4. Project Retirement Age and Evaluate Contribution Schedule: Establishing a projected retirement age and then creating a contribution schedule is essential to retiring in one’s desired lifestyle. The sooner this projection and plan is created, the more likely retirement will be met stress-free and financially secure. If retired, make sure your distribution plan will maintain your lifestyle for many years to come.
5. Review Estate Documents: As life progresses, many events take place. These events can include birth, marriage, divorce, or death. Each year, it is important to review estate documents to ensure all assets are protected in both life and death. This includes a review of one’s will and beneficiaries on all accounts.
6. Ensure Portfolio Aligns with Short and Long-term Goals: Proper investment management allows one’s money to grow over time. Depending on age and risk tolerance, your portfolio must be properly allocated to meet short and long-term needs. As well, it is essential to ensure one’s portfolio does not contain unnecessary investment vehicles with high fees.
7. Meet with a Tax Expert: At the beginning of the year, meet with a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ or tax expert to review all tax-related documents. This will assist with tax planning so that the year is not filled with surprises. A tax expert will also help uncover any allowable deductions that are not being utilized.
8. Conduct Cost-benefit Analysis of Insurance Elections: Preparing for a rainy day provides peace of mind. When electing insurances such as life, health, auto, and home, it is important that the policy reflects your financial needs in the event of unforeseen circumstances. Feeling confident and knowledgeable about coverage allows a true understanding of risks to one’s finances.
9. Capitalize on Employer Benefits: Taking full advantage of your employer’s benefits allows an employee to take full advantage of one’s labor to reach financial goals. Understand timelines for benefit elections. From benefits such as retirement savings plans to health insurance elections, the right choices can save you money and make your life easier. If retired, make sure to understand government benefits to maximize received benefits.
10. Gift the Smart Way: Giving back feels good emotionally, physically, and often financially. In 2018, new tax laws took effect that changed the calculation to financially benefit from a charitable donation. Before giving a donation, become educated about your personal tax situation and how a gift to your favorite charity can be deducted on your upcoming tax return.
When choosing a financial advisor, it is essential to understand the difference between a broker, insurance sales representative, and independent financial advisor with a fiduciary responsibility. Fee-only advisors have a fiduciary obligation to their clients, which means they are legally obligated to put their clients’ interests first.
Tobias Financial Advisors is registered as an investment advisor with the SEC. SEC registration does not constitute an endorsement of the firm by the commission, nor does it indicate that the advisor has attained a particular level of skill or ability. All investment strategies have the potential for profit or loss.