Financial Planning

Advise on financial matters

Don’t accidentally lose your life cover

Don’t accidentally lose your life cover

For some people, the life and permanent disability insurance they hold within their super fund is the only life insurance they have.  They may be unaware that this insurance may be cancelled by their super fund, without their explicit consent on 1st July this year. The change in rules has come about because the government is concerned about the erosion of members’ super balances due to fees and charges for things they don’t need or

3 Steps to overcome financial overwhelm

3 Steps to overcome financial overwhelm

There is a line in a Dr Seuss book: “And this mess is so big And so deep and so tall, We cannot pick it up. There is no way at all!”.  It describes that feeling of overwhelm, when the problem at hand just seems insurmountable.  Unfortunately for those suffering from financial overwhelm, the situation often results in indecision and inaction which can ultimately make things worse. If you are struggling to get traction in your

Moving up the Financial Success Hierarchy

Moving up the Financial Success Hierarchy

Where are you on the Financial Success Hierarchy?  Have you completed all the levels?  Are you on your way? No one is born knowing about money.  We are very likely to have picked up our biases and beliefs from how others  behaved around us when we were growing up.  These ingrained “truths” can sabotage us in many ways and we may not achieve the financial futures that we could and should.  Overcoming your blocks around

How feelings can get in the way of financial success

How feelings can get in the way of financial success

One of the assumptions made by traditional financial planning is that a client makes rational decisions.  Advisers are educated to expect that people will arrive at the “fact-finding” meeting with all their financial information at the ready along with a clearly defined list of goals that they want to achieve. I can honestly say, that in my experience, working with new clients almost never happens in such an over-simplified, vanilla, just follow the process kind

When No plus No can equal Yes

When No plus No can equal Yes

Being originally from England, I am not unhappy with the use of double negatives (did you see what I did there?). I have since learned however, that as well as enabling the mastery of understatement, a double negative can also be used as a very effective decision making tool. It is quite easy to identify the benefits of something by looking at how things will be better if you do it or buy it.  If

Financial Advising with positive intent

Financial Advising with positive intent

I recently wrote about how clients of financial advisers can ask questions to test for conflicts of interest around their advice relationship.  Reflecting on it since, my thoughts have now turned to exploring all the positive qualities that un-conflicted advisers can bring to their client engagements. Doing this has taken me back to what it was that attracted me to financial planning as a profession in the first place (for those that don’t know me,

What you need to know about commission on life insurance

What you need to know about commission on life insurance

One of the biggest challenges facing financial planning as a profession is the need to shrug off its commission based origins. Early pioneers of financial advice were essentially door to door salesmen. Working for the big life companies and pounding the pavement, their wages were based on the number of policies sold. In some sections of the advice community, this style of remuneration is still very entrenched.  Even though a Statement of Advice document has

Property investing and the value of professional advice

Property investing and the value of professional advice

I usually try to keep my ranting on my blog to a minimum, but I have been so saddened by the story of the 71 year old lady from WA who is faced with losing her home to a high risk investment strategy that was probably never appropriate for her (ABC report here). Over a number of years, on a nurse’s wage,  she has amassed 11 investment properties (in addition to her home), owes over

Why I don’t give off-the-cuff advice (and why you shouldn’t want me to)

Why I don’t give off-the-cuff advice (and why you shouldn’t want me to)

I sometimes get approached by people who are not wanting to go the full-monty financial planning experience.   They may be looking for  guidance on a specific decision they need to make, or for a second opinion on a strategy that they are already following. These requests can be tricky to satisfy.  The regulations under which financial planners are authorised require that all personalised advice is given in writing.  We also have to be certain that

5 reasons people give for not planning their finances

5 reasons people give for not planning their finances

Have you been putting off sorting out your personal finances?  If you have, you are not alone. It is not always acknowledged in financial planning that our relationship with money is laden with family baggage, regrets for missed opportunities and worries for the future.  Denying the psychological and behavioural aspects of how we feel and make decisions about our finances is missing half the experience.  Like watching an action movie without the background music. As