Should you hire an expert to manage your money?
Whether a person needs an expert to manage money depends largely on the financial situation. For example , if retirement is nearby and retirement savings are not enough it is advisable to use the services of a financial expert to speed up the savings procedure. However to take care of emergency fund, track spending should be sufficient to arrive upon instances where one could spend less and save more.
The financial expert one hires could make all the difference, too. Some financial advisers are more competent and more observant of their fiduciary duty than a few others
Advisers are not just for the rich: It is not really necessary to be very rich to be able to hire someone to help manage wealth. Many certified planners offer affordable advisory packages.
Eliminating emotion: Managing money is an emotional experience for many. So an unbiased third party advice; from a Certified Financial Planner or a SEBI Registered Investment Advisor, can come in handy even for financially savvy clients. Sometimes one may be experiencing acute financial difficulties, like bad debt or a sudden change in circumstances and can be unable to take proper judgement wherein an adviser comes in handy. Though one may be well versed in personal-finance, executing it appropriately is often easier said than done, and hence it works well when money matters are left to a trained finance professional.
Things can turn more complex with time: As time passes, financial situation will likely to become more complex. Marriage, children and subsequently retirement, make it a complex process and suddenly there is too much to keep track of.
So with time it is better to choose and consult a financial adviser, to help smooth transition in the various stages of life. An adviser can help one sort out retirement and tax related problems. It is very important to get these right the very first time.
Should You Manage Your Own Money?
Financial advisors really do help in the path to financial independence for many people specially when markets are in turmoil. But oneshould always learn the basics of investing before actually letting someone else handle their hard-earned money. Understanding why funds are held or need to be changed, go beyond just returns or performance of a scheme and require a professional to suggest what needs to be done.
Investing and managing money is not rocket science: Getting out of debt, structuring a budget, buying adequate life and health-insurance coverage, saving enough are a few basic steps towards managing money. However, though most people have enough financial know-how to manage their own money, many lack the confidence to do so.
Automate everything. One can set up automatic credit-card payments, as well as automatic bill payments for regular expenses like utilities, cable, rent etc to minimize hassle and ensure timely payments. Having a portion of the salary deposited directly into a savings or retirement account should also help.
Everything You Ever Really Needed to Know About Personal Finance
1. Spending less and earning more by working on either (or both) of these areas, one can increase the gap between those two numbers.
- Earn More by way of having more Income streams, starting side business , moving towards one’s passions whenever the opportunity presents itself etc.
3. Live the Frugal Way by maximising every rupee, doing away with unnecessary habits etc.
4. Manage money by paying off all high interest debt, such as credit cards, building an emergency fund and investing enough.
5. Control destiny by having a big net worth and having freedom from debt.
Why are financial planners better than agents?
People work hard to earn money, but when it comes to planning and growing that hard earned money, whom should one choose – an Agent or a Financial Planner? Even though financial literacy became wide spread through electronic, print and television media, very few people are aware of the existence of Financial Planners in the market.
Hence only few people approach a Financial Planner for advice; and agents still continue to play a major role in financial decision making.
A few points as to why financial planners are a better choice over agents are mentioned here under:
- Proper Choice of Life insurance Products : Agents advise insurance schemes, which are beneficial to them in terms of higher commission. Agents generally are not concerned with financial goals. They will never consider insurance needs, never recommend buying term insurance since the premiums are usually low and thus the commission that they earn on the term policy. Agents generally sell traditional plans with high premiums and low insurance cover, which will earn them around 20 percent – 30 percent of regular annual premium. Also the agent will not be bothered whether one needs insurance at all or there is the need to review the existing insurance policies.
However, Financial Planners usually calculate the insurance needs based on the financial needs (goals) and existing investments (called ‘need based insurance’). A Planner will review the existing insurance as well; while calculating insurance needs, and advise whether it should be continued or surrendered.
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A Planner will always recommend buying ‘online term plan’, since they are the cheapest and does not involve any intermediary. In this way one; saves a lot on the insurance premium by buying right policy and adequate cover at a minimal cost. If one already has sufficient assets and existing insurance in case of an uncertainty, which will be sufficient for dependents then the planner will advise not to buy additional life insurance
- Adequate Amount and Choice of Health Insurance: A Financial Planner will recommend adequate health insurance for a person and his/her family with a mix of individual / floater health insurance plan and a top-up plan. Top-up plan is a plan, which will reimburse hospitalization expense over and above a specified amount (called deductible). Thus the premium is low for top-up policies and one can get high health insurance cover at a lower premium.
Agents generally do not promote top-up plans since the premiums are low and thus the commission they earn on it is low. Agent may advice to buy different policy or increase the sum assured instead of advising top-up plan.
- Unbiased advice: The advice by a planner is totally unbiased and thoroughly researched and is in a person’s interest. There is no conflict of interest in the advice given by the Financial Planner. The planner will usually present a road map/direction to a sound financial future. So there is no doubt to it that it is reasonable enough to find the right Financial Planner to plan finances and bid adieu to the agent, whose primary criterion is to sell products.
How to Find the Right Financial Planner
It is best to go with a certified financial planner (CFP), which is a symbol of credibility and a gold standard world wide
Tips to Choose a Financial Planner
- One should look for a financial adviser who is a certified financial planner (CFP). They are licensed and regulated and take mandatory classes on different aspects of financial planning, like a Certified Financial Planner and a SEBI Registered Investment Advisor..
- One should ask for and read the code of ethics that the financial planner adheres to. A person should look for the word “fiduciary” and language that requires planners to look after one’s best interests.
A background check on the planner, before going ahead with him/her is absolutely necessary. What are her qualifications, certification and experience, what is the firms’ USP.
- One should check to ensure that the credentials the person/planner claims to have are current.
- People should beware of planners who predict market-beating performance . No one can safely make such guarantees, and anyone who tries doing so may be taking risks that one may not want to take.
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