If you don’t know where you are going you are unlikely to get there. Setting sensible and achievable goals is a key part of the financial journey we are all on. But how many of us really have a destination in mind and a plan of how we’re going to reach it?
There are as many different financial goals as there are people. There’s no one-size-fits-all in financial planning - we are all unique and so are our financial aspirations.
For some it might be getting on the housing ladder, for others it’s setting up their own business, putting children through school - or just having enough in the bank to say ‘stuff it’.
It doesn’t matter what our goal is. The important thing is that it should be achievable within an acceptable time frame.
And don’t forget that the family that’s happy with a Ford Mondeo is richer than the one that needs a Porsche Cayenne. Knowing what you don’t want or need is just as important as pinpointing what you are still striving for.
In the episode of Invest for Life below, our real-life savers and investors tell us about their personal goals and how they are working to achieve their hopes and aspirations.
For Amber and Jamie, it’s about not having to work for the rest of their lives. Abby and Sam would love to be able to save a bit more for Una, but they accept that while they are more strapped for cash than they were, they are more fulfilled than they have ever been.
For Kristina, it’s a big island in her dream kitchen. Susan wants to leave her children and grandchildren with the wherewithal to buy the education she values so highly. For Jeremy and Lloyd, the big revelation was understanding that they actually did have enough for the lifestyle they wanted. They could stop accumulating and start enjoying what they had.
Knowing how much is enough is a key question for all savers and investors. But it is not an easy one to answer. You need to make some assumptions about the future. And, as we all know, life doesn’t always turn out as we expect.
Our retirement calculator is a good first step to answering the ‘how much is enough’ question. Once you’ve got a fix on how much you think you’ll need, another tool, MyPlan, will help you work out how to achieve your goal.
And while you are making your plans don’t forget the wise words of Jamie - ‘the most important thing, really, is to be happy and healthy. Having enough money to be comfortable and not worried about it is a big bonus - and something you can plan for.’
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Important information: The value of investments and the income from them can go down as well as up so you may get back less than you invest. Investors should note that the views expressed may no longer be current and may have already been acted upon. This information is not a personal recommendation for any particular investment. If you are unsure about the suitability of an investment you should speak to an authorised financial adviser.
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