By Phil Bollin, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™
We live in a data-driven world. No doubt about it. Anything and everything you could want to know is just a tap or a click away. But unless you’re experienced at collating pertinent data, your quest for a customized answer is often lost in a sea of irrelevant information.
That’s why financial plans are so useful. Not only are you addressing your financial concerns and getting answers to financial questions, but you’re also getting a professionally engineered blueprint that’s been personalized to guide you toward achieving your financial goals.
In this article, you’ll get a sneak peek of a fictional financial plan we created. Let’s dive into what’s typically included and how we put the pieces together.
What a Financial Plan Includes
At Bollin Wealth Management, we believe a financial plan should be your road map for achieving both short-term and long-term financial goals. We start the process of creating your customized plan by getting a complete understanding of your current financial situation and where you’d like to be.
Then we get into the nitty-gritty of your income, expenses, debts, assets, risks, and goals. We organize all the data you provide to build an easy-to-understand financial plan that addresses the following financial planning areas and concerns:
- A summary of your financial goals and resources
- Investment portfolio design and analysis
- Analysis of your risk management and insurance strategies
- Tax optimization strategies for all stages of your financial life
- Retirement income planning
- Retirement income and financial asset projections through your retirement years
- Estate planning and wealth transfer strategies
Take a Closer Look
We put together a sample financial plan that depicts our suggested strategy for a fictional couple named Steve and Andrea Sample. The plan looks at their current lifestyle and income, identifies their goals, provides a balance sheet, reviews their cash flow, and more.
As you’re reviewing their plan, please keep in mind that Steve and Andrea are hypothetical clients only, and nothing in their financial plan should be regarded as actual advice.
To start, take a look at our fictional couple’s personal information:
In the following image you’ll see a snapshot of their current financial goals, the data for which we use as the nexus of their financial plan. Note that the amounts shown in the image below are after-tax (future) dollars.
Next we take the data collected from Steve and Andrea’s financial goals and create a Goal Timeline graph (shown below) that illustrates a comparison between the money they need over time and the money they’ve projected for future wants.
The timeline graph above is especially useful because it allows you to predict when your future expenses might be greater than others; then we can plan for those predictions.
The next step in our process is to gather Steve and Andrea’s total asset data and organize it into a comprehensive resource summary (shown in the four images below).
The extreme detail shown in the four resource summary images above is needed for us (and you) to have a thorough understanding of all your assets, including investments, insurance policies, Social Security plans, retirement income, etc. Take a look at a sample retirement income projection here.
After we organize your asset information, we provide a complete risk assessment summary that shows the losses you would incur at your current risk level. In the example below, Steve and Andrea’s risk score indicates that they are comfortable with a growth-oriented investment strategy comprising 80% equities and 20% fixed income.
Now let’s look at a snapshot of our fictional couple’s plan summary, which indicates the probability with which they will achieve all their financial goals.
The next image shows the same plan summary using numbers instead of an infographic.
Note: Remember, the characters and circumstances in the sample plan shown above are completely fictional. Be sure to seek the advice of a qualified professional for your particular situation.
Getting Started on Your Plan
We at Bollin Wealth Management are here to help you engineer your future! The financial plans we create reassemble the data you provide us into a comprehensive blueprint. That blueprint provides you with the strategy and road map to successfully pursue all your financial goals.
Every client is different and has distinct financial goals, which require a customized plan tailored to their unique circumstances. We hope this sample plan gives you a better understanding of the benefits of pursuing your financial goals with a carefully crafted comprehensive financial plan. To view the entire plan, click here.
Phillip Bollin is CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional at Bollin Wealth Management, a fee-only financial planning and investment advisory services firm that provides comprehensive wealth management solutions, delivered under the fiduciary standard of care.
After working with a variety of firms in the financial services industry who didn’t put clients first, Phillip resolved to provide clients with a better financial planning experience. He founded Bollin Wealth Management in 2004 to provide best-in-class financial planning solutions with a fiduciary focus. He accomplished this by marrying the best practices of financial planning with the problem-solving methodology he learned in his career as an engineer. He’s passionate about guiding clients to be better stewards of their financial resources.
Phillip holds a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the University of Detroit, an MBA from the University of Michigan with specializations in finance and corporate strategy, and the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ designation. Outside of work, Phillip is a dedicated Rotarian, avid fan of the University of Michigan, and enjoys home improvement projects. To learn more about Phillip, connect with him on LinkedIn.