With a wealth of information available online and a slew of investment apps facilitating the management of portfolios and trading of stocks from the comfort of your own home, do you really need a financial planner? Find out below.
It’s true that there is more information online about how to manage your finances than ever before. It’s also true that apps such as Robinhood have brought mobile trading into the mainstream. So, do you really need a professional consultant to manage your finances?
Just because it has never been easier to take a DIY approach to your financial planning and investment management, that doesn’t mean that you should. There is also a wealth of information online about every illness and disease but if I have serious medical symptoms, I’m still going to consult a doctor.
We think there are three must-haves if you want to go solo with your financial planning. Unless you have them all, a financial planner is going to be a good investment.
How much time do you have to dedicate to your financial planning? Because to do a good job you’re going to need a lot of it. Some of this time you’ll have to put in whether you work with a planner or go solo – deciding on your financial goals, determining a budget, working out how much you need to save for retirement – however there are many areas where a financial planner will do the hard work for you.
Keeping abreast of tax laws and legislation is one of them. Understanding the different tax-efficient wrappers available to you depending on where you live is another. This is particularly pertinent for expats living in Asia. It could take you hours of browsing online to find the answers to certain questions which a professional could answer in seconds. If time is not an issue for you then it may be cost-effective to manage your own financial planning but this simply isn’t the case for the vast majority of us. Usually, it makes sense to save yourself some of this most precious of resources and consult a professional.
A professional financial planner is steeped in financial planning day in day out. They are also probably affiliated to a company and/or trade organisations that provide a constant stream of up-to-date information and ongoing professional training. And the best ones have sophisticated tools such as cashflow modelling software which can produce detailed projections to assess whether your investments are going to be sufficient to meet your future financial goals.
To match this level of knowledge and expertise is going to be a huge challenge. As mentioned above, when it comes to saving and investment it’s not simply a case of learning what you need to know and then it’s done. Financial planning is a moveable feast with your requirements evolving as your circumstances change and constantly moving goalposts concerning tax legislation and new products coming to market.
Do you really want to do your own financial planning? If you feel passionate enough about the subject and relish the thought of putting the hours in researching the most tax-efficient way to save, monitoring funds to see how they are performing, keeping up to date on the changes in investing and insurance regulations and assessing whether you are investing enough to meet your financial goals, then go right ahead. In our experience, most people prefer to have someone else do the donkey work and prefer having someone on board who is not emotionally invested in the outcomes and can offer impartial advice.
While you may find the idea of paying someone to plan, budget and invest your money difficult to swallow, unless you have the time, knowledge and desire to do your own planning you will find it an investment which pays for itself many times over in the long term. Just make sure you choose a trustworthy and knowledgeable adviser. You can find out how at this link.
If you don’t have the time, knowledge and desire to go it alone, our team have the experience and expertise to deliver quality financial planning to expatriates in Asia. Let us help you design a comprehensive financial plan to build and protect your wealth and secure your financial future.
Contact us for further information and to set up a free, initial consultation. You won’t regret it.
A leading provider of expat financial services and wealth management services across Asia.