As financial planners, we ask a lot of questions about goals – you might think we are being nosy?!

The reason for asking so many questions is to try and establish what’s most important to you.  It’s not as simple as just asking you what your goals are.  If you ask someone; “What are your goals?” They are probably going to answer; “Repay my mortgage and retire at 60”.

You might be reading this and thinking that’s not a bad goal to have!  Research shows that a different approach helps individuals think about a broader list and that it’s important to rank these in terms of priority before putting a financial plan in place.

So, what sort of list are we talking about? The following might get you thinking:

  1. Start a new business
  2. Buy a house
  3. Help my children though university and minimise their student debt
  4. Stop working and do something I love
  5. Go on my “bucket list” holiday(s)
  6. Relocate in retirement
  7. Care for my aging parents
  8. Give to charity/causes I care about
  9. Feel secure about my finances in retirement
  10. Feel secure about my finances now
  11. Leave an inheritance to my loved ones
  12. Retire early/phase into retirement
  13. Not be a burden on my family as I grow older.

Whilst most financial planners also manage investments (as we do) to assist with future goals (pensions, ISAs etc) our priority is to ask you; “What’s it for?” to help you articulate what sort of life you want both now and in the future.  If your current financial adviser is only talking to you about your investments, then perhaps it’s time to find someone who is interested in your plans.

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