You have recently received your annual bonus. Great! However, it’s slouching in your bank account doing nothing. Not so great. So where to from here? Whether it’s Dollars, Pounds, Euros, Rands or Rupees, you should have an action plan. But what are your options?
If you’re sitting on some extra cash assets from a recent sale of a house, a recognition bonus, savings from your income or perhaps, even an inheritance… you might be left pondering how to best put these funds to good use. Whilst a cash injection is always welcome, most of us are often unsure how to get the most from our money: “Should I reward myself? Should I save? Where can I invest? Maybe I should be settling debt?”
At Austen Morris Associates, we help our clients identify their “needs and wants” and how to satisfy the balance between getting what you “want” while planning the areas you most certainly “need” to ensure you are financially taken care of.
You may want to read the below before “I should” becomes “I should have”…
If you haven’t already started investing, you’re not too late. It is never too late. A lump sum injection of money may be exactly what you need to begin constructing a portfolio that kick-starts your journey to a sound financial future. Today’s financial landscape is open to all types of investors; from your sophisticated and highly knowledgeable investor, to first time investors. Investing can be tricky, daunting at times, so seeking quality advice from experienced industry professionals will be the first step to understanding your options. Solutions are available for regular savings in the form of monthly, quarterly or even annual contributions, as well as lump sum single investments, or even a combination of both. Ideally, you should partner with a firm that is qualified to approach multinational investment companies across the globe. You want all the options, don’t you? Investing is not a “one size fits all” and your investment consultant should deliver the most appropriate investment design for your specific needs, regardless of your geographical location.
Settling / Decreasing Debt
It’s important to understand the difference between “Good” debt versus “Bad” debt. Simply put, “Good” debt is money owed on anything that builds wealth or has the potential to increase your net worth, examples include student loans, mortgages and business loans. “Bad” debt is linked to consumer debt such as credit cards or money owing that does little to improve your financial position or outcome. Managing debt is always advisable. How we manage it is the real trick. Distributing available funds to settle debt may feel like the right choice, but is it always? Maybe not. We need to consider the nature of the debt, the associated risk and weigh it up against the opportunity cost of appropriating funds in the most efficient way.
Rainy Day Fund
Keeping funds on hand for emergencies is imperative for those unforeseen expenses. Appliance breakdowns, the sick pet, insurance excess, additional medical costs, a needing relative, or a global pandemic… These are the type of things we just can’t predict. Having liquid cash provides comfort and needs to be readily available for such circumstances. However, it can become tempting to make use of these funds in other areas. When considering such savings, one should look to maintain a level of flexibility whilst still reaping the benefits of putting this money to work.
Sadly, many people fail to adequately plan for the many years when employment or income stops – their retirement! Poor planning will mean a heavy reliance on government social systems (if available) and in many cases this means you will need to scale back your lifestyle. Retirement could last 25 to 30 years or longer, so planning and saving will never be more important than now. Finding the correct retirement vehicle(s), minimising fee’s and ensuring tax efficiencies can make all the difference in providing you a comfortable retirement. Plan. Save. Sleep. Repeat.
Always invest in you. Invest in your health, your education, your abilities and self-enhancement.
Austen Morris Associates is a global financial advisory specialising in wealth management, personal and corporate financial planning. Our team of adept consultants are available to help you understand your options and source the best possible solutions for your individual or corporate needs. Unbiased advice, on-going support and unrivalled levels of service ensure we remain invested together with our clients, always.
Contact Us to set up an appointment to discuss your financial requirements.