by Kris Amliwala
As a financial planner specializing in retirement income planning, I’ve noticed one common goal after retirement is travel. But with the current restrictions and advice against travel, how will clients’ plans be affected? While I can help my clients postpone their goals, if safe travel is not feasible for a long time, which alternatives are available? The answer may lay within focusing upon other retirement goals. But what are these goals and how do they come to the forefront?
Why do retirees want to travel? Perhaps because travel is a synonym for freedom and flexibility.
I often find retirement can be a shock to my clients’ systems. Believe it or not, retirement can adversely affect mental health. We spend most of our lives developing routines, patterns and habits. Then, one day we wake up and have nowhere to go, no specific place to be, no calendar appointments because we are now in “retirement” and seemingly free to fulfill our own wishes. But freedom in and of itself is a broad goal.
We must have more meaningful conversations with clients to examine what is important to them so we can define what retirement freedom means to them.
Personally, one of the least inspiring aspects of planning is having nothing to plan with; where a financial plan is fully funded and beyond that there are no meaningful objectives (as defined by the client). Yes, there certainly are examples of inspiration and meaning that do not require financial planning. And some clients may have both the fortune of having a fully funded financial plan and meaningful objectives.
This where planning and coaching clients will increase the chances of connecting the dots between their finances and helping them live more fulfilling lives, as defined by themselves.
The Kinder Institute of Life Planning methodology is based upon the, “premise that advisors should first discover a client’s most essential goals in life before formulating a financial plan, so that a client’s finances fully support these goals.”
A well-built and delivered financial plan will help move and inspire a client to discover for themselves these essential goals and purpose in their lives. That could be starting a business, joining a philanthropic project or any other dream. I believe that our role as financial planners is to support any and all goals and dreams of our clients.
Planning in this manner with clients has led to them creating other life goals.
For instance, some clients have decided to sell the family business or start a new one. One client decided they wanted to open a tearoom with a bakery in a favorite rural location and name it after their daughter.
Other clients have taken up more hobbies, such as painting with watercolors, or taking an educational study course.
Building a property portfolio has also become a new goal. One client decided to buy land to preserve for environmental purposes and to teach horse riding.
New goals have also revolved around spending more time with family, including looking after elderly relatives and creating more happy memories with the extended family.
Focusing on health, including mental health, has also become a priority for some clients. One client wants to spend more time outside with the dog.
Clients are also taking now as an opportunity to turn their financial plans toward their children, planning to afford them the best possible education and give them a strong financial footing for life
Lastly, I have one client who wants to slide down a bannister
Being able to visualize the potential impact of these goals on time and money through cashflow planning has encouraged clients to keep thinking big and discover more meaningful goals for their lives. Hopefully, this means they are using their time to help enrich their lives.
Collaborating with your clients, mapping their goals against their future finances with cashflow planning can catalyze them into action, help them turn these dreams into reality, and embrace their financial future. This adds value by magnitudes, no matter how their specific goals shift.
Kris Amliwala is a Chartered Financial Planner and Registered Life Planner for Designer Wealth Management, based in Leicestershire. Specialising in helping create and protect multi-generational wealth for families.
The views expressed in this article are that of this author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Voyant.