If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail
— Benjamin Franklin, Founding Father
Many think investing is simply about making smart investments and getting good returns, but it is critical to have a plan in place beforehand to ensure that you know WHY you are investing. This plan, which is built in close collaboration with your financial advisor, should reflect what is most important to you — your values, needs, concerns and hopes.
It is similar to building a new house. Initially you meet with an architect to share what you are looking for. Your architect will ask a lot of questions to make sure he or she understands your preferences and has a good feel for your vision.
Your architect will put together a blueprint for your dream house. Then you can start construction. There will be some changes along the way, but without this blueprint, your dream home could become a nightmare.
Financial planning works the same way. Your financial advisor will help clarify your goals and dreams for the future, focusing on key life areas such as helping and protecting your family and building a legacy. Your advisor will then create a plan that is both specific and unique to your situation. Then put together a portfolio to make this plan possible.
Because life changes along the way, you will meet regularly with your advisor to ensure that the plan is still on track and that your circumstances or goals have not changed.