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When we first get to meet a new financial planning client, it’s invariably because they seek us out for help with achieving longer-term financial objectives, such as:

  • Moving home
  • Starting a business
  • Financing education for children
  • Retiring early

In effect they are looking for guidance on the financial aspects of their journey through life.

Before we work with new clients however, we ask our clients to complete a Spending plan or forecast with us, designed to identify in detail what their financial needs are, now and in the future. As this is very early in our relationship with them, we don’t use any fancy Apps, or online tools, we just use a very simple Excel document.

Most importantly, we don’t take the client version at face value, we interrogate the numbers to make sure they stack up. Very often, we meet resistance to this part of our process, with objections such as:

“Budgets are Boring”,

or, “Why does it matter, we have plenty more coming in than going out”,

or, worse still, “I’m no good at keeping track”.

So why do we believe understanding your spending patterns and building a budget is so important?

Well, apart from providing financial discipline:

  • Budgeting helps us all to keep track of our finances and understand where the money goes
  • Budgeting helps us to see where are going right, as well as where we are going wrong
  • Budgeting shows us what we TRULY need to meet our financial requirements
  • Budgeting helps us to achieve our financial objectives

Furthermore, in our experience, accurate budgeting allows us to help our clients achieve and maintain a state of financial wellbeing, which is about being in a financial position where you:

  • Can fully meet your current financial obligations
  • Can feel secure in your ability to meet your future financial obligations
  • Can have peace of mind when it comes to the “What Ifs” life brings
  • Can have the ability to make financial choices that allow you to enjoy your life

So maybe the next time you want to think about your financial future, ask yourself first, do you TRULY know what your financial NOW costs?

Brendan Reilly
Eolas Money