One question I am asked often in this business is, what makes a good client for Family Financial Partners? Last week, we talked about common assumptions people make about working with a financial advisor. Today, I want to take a look at what makes a good financial client, and some of the misconceptions we hear about this as well.
First, many people seem to think that you have to be a certain age to work with a financial planning team. More specifically, people assume that young people don’t need this service, but this couldn’t be farther from the truth. We work with just as many young people who are starting their adult life as we do with people who come 10 days after retirement, wanting to access their money now that the party is over.
In addition, while we’re happy to work with people regardless of how far they are from retirement, the earlier you start working with us, the more we can likely do to help you reach your goals. Time is typically on your side when it comes to your money. If you have questions about your finances, want to organize your financial life, and have goals you want to work toward, you’re the right age to talk to a financial advisor.
Related to that point, you don’t have to be married or have kids to start organizing your financial life. That’s right – single people do need a financial plan! Considering that money and finances are a leading factor in many divorces, getting your financial house in order before tying the knot and starting a family could serve you well later on.
The ideal client does not necessarily need to own a home or other large asset. Many of our clients rent or lease their homes simply because of life situations, whether that’s a temporary job, after a divorce, or simply not wanting to be tied to a certain city. For many people, renting makes more sense, even for those who do plan to own a home at some point. In some areas, home prices are high, meaning it can take longer to save up that down payment. Or, for those in more urban areas, perhaps the building went co-op, and people are saving to simply buy the apartment they’ve lived in for years.
Whether you own or not, your living space is likely a large part of where your income goes each month, and we can help you create a plan that fits your budget and lifestyle, now and down the road.
Similarly, you don’t need to have your career path mapped out for the next three decades to sit down with a planning team. We’ve helped many of our clients navigate career and job changes, plan for continued education to help increase earning potential, or start a side-gig to supplement primary income. Changing jobs comes with many considerations, from base pay to bonuses to benefits, and we are always happy to go over all of those variables as our clients figure out what they want to be when they grow up.
Finally, one that’s a little trickier – if you have high debt and not much in the way of assets, you might be better serviced by a debt-relief agency. Now, our team will sit down with anyone no matter their situation. We can always offer some very basic advice that will put you on a beneficial course as your financial picture comes into focus. But if you’ve filed for bankruptcy with no rich uncle in sight, that may be a better conversation for someone else. Just as we can’t do much when someone calls us after an accident asking about disability coverage, well, we’re not miracle workers. But, do give us a call when your consumer debt is under control and it’s time to get to work on the fun stuff! First meetings are always complimentary, and we’ll be here when you’re ready.
Article by David Smyth, Senior Partner at Family Financial Partners — a financial services firm in Lexington, Kentucky.
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