Put Yourself on the Path to Financial Freedom
When you work with your team at Bell Investment Advisors to build your financial plan, the end result should be peace-of-mind. Your plan is a roadmap that is unique to you, which brings your concerns and expectations to the surface – and shows you what choices and efforts will help you achieve your financial goals. By making decisions and taking steps that are guided by an expertly-designed financial plan, you will be working towards a planned-for, rather than hoped-for, future.
How can a financial plan help you make decisions?
A plan is not a static document to be presented to you in a glossy, colorful folder, and then never discussed again. It is an actionable guide that is usually revisited every one-to-two years, or whenever a large financial decision arises in your life.
A financial plan is a living document that can help your advisor:
- Assess what path to retirement you are currently on, and discuss choices that could change your trajectory
- Determine the appropriate allocation for your investment portfolio
- Recommend the most beneficial time to file for Social Security
- Uncover a tax-saving Roth Conversion opportunity
- Analyze the benefits of taking a pension as a lump sum vs. a monthly payment
- Review whether you have sufficient life insurance coverage
- Calculate what size house you can afford, or if downsizing would benefit you
- Propose a college savings strategy that does not undermine your own retirement goals
How do we build your financial plan?
The first step to creating or revising your financial plan is getting clarity about where you are now, and where you’d like to be in the future. We use our years of experience and knowledge to help our clients uncover opportunities – and avoid missteps – that they cannot prepare for themselves.
The typical path that your advisor and paraplanner will guide you through is:
1. Understanding your personal and financial circumstances
Your Bell team will obtain and analyze qualitative and quantitative information, such as personal values, risk tolerance, financial expectations, income & expenses, and assets & liabilities. This begins the planning process.
2. Identifying and selecting goals
You likely already have a number of financial goals in mind that you want your investment portfolio and financial decisions to support. Your advisor will discuss those with you, and may bring important considerations to your attention, and help you prioritize your goals.
3. Analyzing your current course of action, and potential alternative courses of action
Getting clarity about where you are now, and what financial future your current trajectory is setting you up for, can be revealed through your financial plan. If your current trajectory does not match where you want to be headed, your advisor will determine other options and their pros and cons.
4. Developing financial planning recommendations for your goals
If there are opportunities you are missing out on, or if some adjustments are called for to achieve your financial goals, your advisor will consider potential courses of action and identify the recommendation(s) that are designed to maximize your potential to reach those goals.
5. Presenting these recommendations to you
Your Bell advisor will present their recommendations, what goals or results they are designed to help you achieve, and what assumptions they are based on.
6. Assisting you with implementing the financial planning recommendations
In the next step, your advisor will outline what changes or efforts (if any) are necessary to put the recommendations into effect, and who is responsible for implementing them. Your advisor may be implementing changes to your investment allocation, but other steps such as changing your 401(k) contribution level or acquiring umbrella insurance may require action on your part.
7. Monitoring your progress and updating your plan
Your advisor and paraplanner are part of your team, and will continue to revise your financial plan with you as progress happens and life changes. At planning update meetings, you and your Bell team will review the effect of recommendations that were implemented, and revisit your expectations, goals, and priorities as they shift over time.