Most people will tell you they have a financial plan. What they really mean is they have a “retirement package” with a pension fund, life and health insurance policies, mutual funds, and the like. The typical plan is nothing more than a collection of financial products purchased without a clear idea of the total picture.
Investing requires a personal financial plan. Where are you and where do you want to go? Do you just want to be secure? Comfortable? Or rich? Are you set up to retire early, or are you living like a financial yo-yo? These are the sorts of questions you need to answer in order to choose your investments wisely.
Rich Dad Tip on Personal Financial Plan:
Do you want to be: • Secure? • Comfortable? • Or rich?
It’s difficult to build a jigsaw puzzle without seeing the cover of the box. Likewise, it’s difficult to invest wisely without a fiscal picture in mind. The most successful investors are the ones who can envision a picture—and who build rather than buy the pieces.
How do you build your own financial jigsaw? First, you choose an image by envisioning your personal future. Will you retire at age forty-five or remain self-employed until eighty? Live in a mansion or in a small condo in the city? Spend your twilight years in a long-term care facility or tended to by a private nurse? Do you want to have too little money or too much money?
Once the image is clear, you’ll have to achieve financial literacy to create it. If you do not know how to make money, what type of income is tax favored or tax penalized, when to sell or when to sit tight, your plan is sure to fall apart. With the proper education and experience, however, you can break your plan down into investment vehicles, such as income-producing property, business franchises, and stock portfolios that will optimize your chances of financial well-being.
If you are seeking a loan which will give you additional funds during your retirement a standard mortgage may not be the answer. Instead, you may benefit from a reverse mortgage, which does not have the same rigid repayment standards as a regular loan. In fact, your reverse mortgage lender will give you part of your home’s equity as cash each month, and you will continue to retain home ownership. You will only have to pay the borrowed equity back in full immediately if you leave the home. If you choose not to do so or you or your family is unable to do so, the lender can recoup some or all of the balance through the sale of the home with any additional earnings beyond the owed money going to your family.
No two financial plans are alike, for dreams and comfort levels are different. Some people love camping in the wild, others can’t sleep without a roof over their heads. In general, though, people hope to be either secure, comfortable, or rich. The personal lifestyle you strive for determines what type of investing you’ll pursue. If your plan is to be rich, you must also have a plan to be secure and comfortable.