What is Holistic Financial Planning?

One of the newer phrases to find its way into the vocabulary of today’s more progressive financial planners is “holistic financial planning”. So what does it mean and why now? Also is this newer type of all inclusive financial planning something that you can benefit by?

In broader terms, holistic financial planning identifies and takes into consideration the entirety of a clients financial situation both present and on into the future. When the client receives completely inclusive or complete holistic advice, they are far better able to make decisions that insure that their total objectives are more realistically obtained.

In the past far too many financial planners and their clients took a far more narrowly focused approach to Financial Planning. Each consideration was held out and dealt with separately. One by one increments or facets of a person’s finances would be analyzed and dealt with as a singular unit. In the end it was felt that all the pieces would fall together correctly and they often did.

How Holistic Financial Planning Works

With holistic financial planning however, all aspects of client’s finances, goals, lifestyle and ideals are brought together at once and analyzed as a whole. A much “bigger picture” is viewed, if you will and also other peripheral aspects and factors such as client’s principles are entered into the equation as well. Something that was rarely done in the past.

Holistic financial planning begins with a preliminary financial advisory process that includes an initial fact finding stage. This initial stage of the process is geared towards assessing a clients likes and dislikes, general opinions, goals both short and long term. Also during this initial fact finding stage, information such as a clients risk tolerance is also gathered and filed for analysis. Then after the necessary preliminary information has been gathered, it’s on to the next phase.

This secondary stage would be the strategy recommendation stage, where all of the data gathered is used to formulate an inclusive and objective strategy that takes all into account. In this stage the clients objectives and goals are prepared and laid out with a focus on creating wealth, debt management, taxation plans, estate planning and of course risk.

While this process may sound simple on the surface, it’s not. In fact in some cases the entire preliminary review can involve several meetings and in the end what is arrived at must also be approved by the client. As these meetings and review sessions unfold, often times a client will be given several options to choose from, such that in the end the final plan meshes seamlessly with their principles and values.

The final phase of the holistic financial planning process involves the monitoring/review process. As previously indicated, this a continuous and ongoing function in which benchmarks the applied overall plans outcomes and performance levels, factored against the clients perceived goals and objectives.

This ongoing process includes periodic portfolio value assessment reports, workshops and seminars, portfolio review meetings and strategy sessions and of course the end of year pre-taxation strategy and planning sessions. So hopefully now you can see that it’s a system that provides holistic advice for clients geared towards growth, security and peace of mind.

Financial Planning Services

Financial strategists and planners are specialists who work with individuals to create a financial plan which will help to generate more wealth. They are commonly used by people from all different walks of life, including people who are heading towards retirement, and people that are interested in learning how to invest and use their income to maximize their wealth. This article takes a look at a five step process which is offered by financial strategists, and it explains what each of the steps entail.

The five step process includes an initial consultation, a strategic planning preparation, a strategy presentation, strategy implementation, and ongoing service and review.

Initial Consultation

The first step involves a thorough consultation where you will meet face to face with your financial planner to discuss your current financial situation and your goals and objectives. During the consultation you are free to ask any questions about the service. The financial planner will be able to clearly advise you on all costs and fees, and provide you with detailed information on the types of services that they can offer. There will be no obligation to proceed with the service after the initial consultation. If you do wish to proceed you can ask your financial planner to prepare a financial plan for you.

Strategy Plan and Preparation

The next step involves finding out more detailed information about your current financial situation in order to make a financial plan which is tailored to your needs. This can include ascertaining you current assets and liabilities, identifying your income and expenditure and understanding your current tax structure, amongst other things. This information is then processed to streamline your current financial situation, and to identify appropriate wealth creation strategies which are best matched to your circumstances. Financial planners will also help to minimize taxation, consolidate debt and maximize government entitlements. During this process your privacy and confidentiality is assured.

Strategy Presentation

Another meeting is arranged in which the financial planner will present a full financial plan which has been tailored to your exact financial situation. They will be able to make minor adjustments to the plan if it is necessary and clarify any of the details for you. If you are happy with the plan you can give the authority to put it into action. They will have all of the necessary paperwork with them, and assist with the insurance underwriting process so that you can get the plan implemented as soon as possible.

Ongoing Service Review

It is possible to subscribe to a full client care package, which includes ongoing service and review of your financial plan. A financial planner will be able to review all aspects of your financial plan to ensure that it is performing well and meeting or exceeding your expectations. They will identify opportunities which can be used to update or modify your existing financial plan, and check that the plan fits in with any lifestyle changes. They will also advise you on updates to the world’s economy so that your plan can be updated as required.