The Financial Planning Process
As outlined by the Financial Planning Association of Australia (FPA), financial planning is a six step process.
Step 1: Defining the scope of engagement
The planner should explain the process they will follow, find out your needs and make sure they can meet them. You can ask them about their background, how they work and how they charge.
Step 2: Identifying your goals
You work with the planner to identify your short and long term financial goals – this stage serves as a foundation for developing your plan.
Step 3: Assessing your financial situation
The planner will take a good look at your position – your assets, liabilities, insurance coverage and investment or tax strategies.
Step 4: Preparing your financial plan
The planner recommends suitable strategies, products and services, and answers any questions you have.
Step 5: Implementing the recommendations
Once you’re ready to go ahead, your financial plan will be put into action; where appropriate, the planner may work with specialist professionals, such as an accountant or solicitor.
Step 6: Reviewing the plan
Your circumstances, lifestyle and financial goals are likely to change over time, so it’s important your financial plan is regularly reviewed, to make sure you keep on track.