What Is Financial Freedom?

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As you move through life, your financial landscape tends to evolve. It’s natural to outgrow your previous goals and objectives, especially as your family grows and your priorities shift. For those who find themselves with more complex financial questions and challenges, our Financial Foundations service may not be enough.

To help you more effectively address your financial concerns, we offer a service called Financial Freedom. It’s specifically designed for those seeking more comprehensive financial planning that covers various areas.  

Let’s dive into the eight pillars of our Financial Freedom service.

#1: Goals Feasibility Analysis

What makes your financial plan look different than everyone else? It’s the unique goals that you and your advisor use to drive your financial decision-making.

A goals feasibility analysis is what we use to help you determine if the goals you previously established for yourself and your family are still reflective of your financial world today. Just as you evolve, your desires and priorities evolve as well. Something you thought you wanted ten years ago may no longer be relevant to where you’re at in your life today.

For example, you dreamed of saving for a vacation home a decade ago. But since then, you and your spouse welcomed a set of twins into your growing family. Now, your priorities have shifted, and you’d like to spend those savings on offsetting the future cost of college.

We’ll help you review your financial goals and discuss the necessary steps to achieve them. Perhaps you have a general goal to retire comfortably, for example. We’ll help you quantify your desire by discussing your potential timeline, where you’d like to live in retirement, how you’ll spend your free time and more.

A goal feasibility analysis aims to nail down your goals, determine if you’re on track to meet your vision for the future and build a plan to get you there.

#2: Insurance Planning

The wider your financial landscape spreads, the more critical asset protection becomes. Therefore, insurance planning is an integral part of your overall financial plan. Working with a financial partner, you can decide what insurance policies make the most sense for your situation.

Some standard policies to review include:

  • Health insurance
  • Life insurance (term or whole)
  • Disability insurance
  • Long-term care insurance
  • Liability insurance (for small business owners)

When comparing policies, consider both your protection needs and budget. Generally speaking, the higher the monthly premium, the more coverage is provided. But it is possible to be overinsured, which could lead to spending more out of pocket each month in premiums than is necessary. As we review your policies and select the most suitable options, we’ll help ensure your coverage aligns with the rest of your financial plan.

#3: Retirement Cash Flow Planning

Many people approaching retirement don’t realize that withdrawing from their hard-earned savings can be more complex than growing them.

There are a few reasons why.

First, you may develop an emotional attachment to those savings, considering you’ve spent the past few decades growing it. Changing your mindset from accumulating to decumulating is challenging, sometimes making it difficult for people to feel comfortable pulling money from their savings. 

Second, every source of retirement income has its tax benefits and considerations. Because of this, how and when you choose to withdraw from your various retirement accounts can make a big difference in making your money last.

Building a retirement cash flow plan can help you transition to that decumulation mindset and determine the most tax-efficient way to draw down your savings.

#4: Investment Management

Your potential to build wealth and achieve your long-term goals (like retirement) depends significantly on your portfolio. Following an investment plan that reflects your risk tolerance, values, and timeline toward retirement is critical. The key, however, is to review your portfolio regularly and make educated, data-driven adjustments as needed.

Going it alone, managing your investment portfolio can be difficult. You may need more time, resources, or desire to make forward-focused decisions. Not to mention, you are inherently biased about your money—which can pose a challenge when making decisions about your portfolio. When you work instead with a financial advisor, like our team at Partners in Financial Planning, you have an educated guide with access to the most up-to-date information who can work to make goal-driven decisions on your behalf.

#5: Retirement Planning

You only have one chance to prepare for retirement.

With time on your side, there are decisions you’re making right now that can significantly impact your retirement readiness later. A financial advisor can work with you closely to strike the right balance between enjoying the wealth you’ve worked hard to build today and keeping a keen eye on your needs in retirement. They can work with you to explore your options for guaranteed future income, find tax-efficient savings strategies, discuss future healthcare options, and help you build a budget based on your dream retirement location. 

#6: Estate Planning

A thoughtful and well-executed estate plan is the greatest gift you can leave your loved ones. There are several ways to transfer wealth to your family, friends, or beloved organizations, and we can help you find the right option for your specific needs. From wills and trusts to insurance and gifting, we’ll work with you to understand the benefits and tax liabilities of any avenue you’re considering.

In addition, we can coordinate with your attorney during the estate planning process to ensure no stone’s left unturned.

#7: College Planning

You have options if you want to help your child or grandchild offset the cost of college. Establishing a 529 plan is a tax-efficient way to set aside savings for a child’s future education costs. Keep in mind, however, that college planning should be done in a way that compliments your other goals (like retirement) rather than take away from them. Like an oxygen mask on an airplane, you need to put on your mask first before helping others.

One good thing to remember about college planning: With recent legislative changes, up to $35,000 from a 529 plan can be rolled into a Roth IRA (as long as specific criteria are met). Say you save up for college, and your straight-A student gets a full ride to their dream university. The recent rule change allows you to roll those funds into a retirement account, offering more flexibility than previously available for parents and grandparents.

#8: Income Tax Planning

Preserving your wealth is as critical to achieving financial freedom as growing it. Income tax planning is done year-round to help reduce your tax obligations when filing a return. Through the lens of tax planning, we look at every angle of your financial world to identify tax-efficient solutions and strategies.

Experience Financial Freedom With PIFP

We’re here to help you and your family address the challenges and opportunities within your financial life. If you could benefit from comprehensive financial planning, we’ve developed our Financial Freedom level of service specifically for you.

Feel free to reach out if you have any questions or want to learn more about Partners in Financial Planning.

About Us

Partners in Financial Planning provides tax-focused, comprehensive, fee-only financial planning and investment management services. With locations in Salem, Virginia and Charleston, South Carolina, our team is well-equipped to serve clients both locally and nationally with over 100 years of combined experience and knowledge in financial services.

To learn more, visit https://partnersinfinancialplanning.com