When do you need a financial adviser?

While it may be easy enough to shrug off the idea of seeing a financial adviser as something only wealthy people do, financial advice can be beneficial for everyone. You don’t need a million dollars in the bank, you don’t need a yacht, and you don’t need a pied-à-terre in the city. You simply need a desire to do something about your current financial situation or financial goals in mind that you would like to achieve.

Providing financial planning and advice, a financial adviser can help you to navigate all kinds of financial decisions and situations. A financial adviser may offer advice on budgeting and investing, on superannuation and retirement planning, on insurance and taxation. But, how much can you expect to pay for financial advice?

While financial planning may not be reserved for the rich, financial advice does come at a cost. So, if you’re not wealthy enough to keep a financial adviser at your beck and call, when should you seek financial advice? There are three main reasons why many people seek the advice of a trusted professional – and they go as follows.

1. Planning for retirement

There’s no denying planning for retirement can be a scary prospect. How could you possibly know how much money you’ll need to live on after you retire? Perhaps more importantly, how can you make enough money during 40 or so years of work to financially support yourself for 20, 30 or even 40 years after retirement?

A few years ago, a prominent financial services provider carried out a survey to find out how Australians felt about their retirement preparedness1. Amazingly, 66% of survey respondents said they felt unprepared for retirement, while only 15% said they felt very well or fairly well prepared. Meanwhile, the report also showed that those who used finance professionals were more than three times more likely to feel prepared for retirement.

So, how can a financial adviser help with retirement planning? No matter what stage of life you’re at, a financial adviser can help you put a plan in place for retirement. This will usually involve assessing where you are now, and determining where you want to be and when. A financial adviser can work out whether you’re on track, and help devise strategies to help you close the gap if you’re behind.

From aged care planning to estate planning, from inheritance tax mitigation to gifting to family, a financial adviser can offer advice on everything from protecting your assets to preserving your capital – hopefully making that idea of retirement preparedness a whole lot less scary.

2. Developing an investment plan

We all have goals. Whether they involve travelling the world, buying a house on the water, or learning a language, our goals are what drive us. With that in mind, what could be more important than financial goals? For the most part, it is our finances that allow us – or prevent us – from reaching our goals.

No money, no travelling. No money, no house on the water. No money, no way to pay for language lessons. With clear financial goals in place, we know where we want to be – which is the main starting point for creating an investment strategy. A financial adviser can look at your financial goals and your timeline for reaching them, to then create a coherent investment plan.

Taking into account your current finances, your goals and your tolerance for risk, this investment plan will help you work towards your short, medium and long term financial goals. In doing this, your financial adviser should make clear recommendations, outline the risks involved, and communicate any possible strengths or weaknesses in your plan.

However, it is worth bearing in mind that your financial adviser cannot predict the market, or ensure investments always turn out as they should. But, your adviser can keep you updated with any changes that could influence your investments, such as market slumps. With regular meetings, your adviser can also ensure your plan stays on track, to make adjustments as required.

3. Times of change

Which brings us neatly to the final reason why you may choose to see a financial adviser. As Dylan would say, the times they are a changin’ – and as times change, so does our situation. Whether you’re starting a new job or getting married, whether you’re considering starting a family or you’ve inherited some money, these financial changes could be made easier with financial advice.

Say, you’re thinking about getting married. It could be helpful to speak to a financial adviser together to make sure you’re both on the same page. If you’re having a baby, financial advice could make sure you are prepared for the change financially. This could mean getting the correct estate planning documents in place, or working out who will work when, what kind of childcare you can afford, and when it’s time to start planning for uni.

Perhaps you got a promotion, or a new job with a significant pay increase. What about a windfall or an inheritance? To avoid misspending that extra money, a financial adviser could offer advice on where that money could do the best good, while also providing insight into tax implications.

What’s next?

From managed funds to money worries during retirement, a financial adviser could provide advice and assistance with all aspects of your finances. Want to find out more about financial planning and advice? Check out these blog posts to get insight into what you can expect and whether financial planning would work for you.

The material on this website is intended only to provide a summary and general overview on matters of interest.  Trilogy is only licensed to provide general financial product advice on its own products and does not consider your objectives, financial situation or needs when providing any information or advice. You should consider whether the advice is suitable for you and your personal circumstances and we recommend that you seek personal financial product advice on your objectives, financial situation or needs and obtain and read the relevant product disclosure statement before making any investment decision.

[1] https://www.canstar.com.au/superannuation/retirement-planning-need-professional-advice/