Understand your financial future today

How financial forecasting can help you realise the life you want to lead sooner rather than later.

It’s often hard to work out what decisions to take today to help you realise your future ambitions. You
may want to work part-time, sell your business, buy a holiday home, or retire sooner rather than later.  But how and when do you make the call to realise your ambitions?
Here, we outline some ideas to help you get started.

Create a personal balance sheet
Working out how much you currently have and need to meet your goals is not difficult, but it is
time-consuming.

In general, you need to have a good idea of your current income such as your annual salary, bonus and any rental income, and the value of the assets you own such as your house, investments, savings, and pension accounts. It’s also important to know how much debt you have, and when you are likely to pay it off.

Once you have a good idea of your personal balance sheet, you can turn your attention to how much you spend per year and want to spend in the future on things such as holidays, meals out, and hobbies.

The power of financial forecasting
If, however, your needs are more complex you may benefit from expert help. For instance, let’s say you wish to sell your business in the next few years, pay your children’s university fees, and have an inheritance to invest. You are likely faced with making a number of decisions about your family’s needs in this situation, alongside considering several corporate exit scenarios.

This is where financial forecasting software can help model the future life you wish to live and enable you to stress test both positive and negative scenarios such as:

  • Ascertaining that you can sell your business in two years rather than five and still live your
    dream life;
  • Understanding the consequences of settling large sums into a trust for your beneficiaries;
  • Buying a holiday home rather than simply going on holiday; and
  • Whether you can afford to retire earlier than you think you can.

Working out whether you are on track to meet your future ambitions and what you can do today to support these goals is powerful. It means your financial future is tangible. You can discuss the impact of different approaches, and benefit from thoroughly informed decisions.

Seek advice
If you feel unsure about how to tackle your financial future, speaking to an adviser who is well versed in cash-flow modelling tools and financial forecasting can help. Bringing to life your financial plans and engaging with different scenarios will enable you to make better decisions today so you can live the life you wish to lead sooner rather than later.

 

The value of investments and any income from them can fall and you may get back less than you invested.
The opinions expressed in this publication are not necessarily the views held throughout Brewin Dolphin Ltd.