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Quiz: Are You and Your Partner Financially Compatible?

Are you and your partner in financial harmony? Establishing a financially secure future together is an invaluable act of love. Taking the time to sit down with your partner and explore your financial perspectives can strengthen your bond. Discuss and align your financial goals to ensure you’re both navigating in the same direction. Celebrate love not just with romantic gestures, but with the commitment to make wise financial decisions together. Here’s to a love-filled day underscored by the promise of a secure financial future!

In terms of your financial communication, do you and your partner:

  1. Regularly discuss financial matters
  2. Occasionally talk about finances
  3. Rarely discuss money matters

It’s never too late to start discussing your finances! Building a life together with your partner involves frequent financial choices. Get in the habit of discussing financial matters early on to build a financial future full of both of your needs, wants, and wishes. 

How do you envision your ideal retirement together?

  1. Traveling and enjoying your leisure
  2. Living a frugal and comfortable life
  3. We haven’t discussed our retirement plans.

Having a conversation with your partner about retirement will help you develop a retirement plan to meet both your goals. Speak with your financial advisor about each of your retirement goals and carefully evaluate your current financial health to properly craft a financial plan to ensure a happy retirement.

In the event of a financial windfall, what would you and your partner prioritize?

  1. Saving and investing
  2. Paying off debts
  3. Splurging on a shared experience

Life is full of uncertainties, but there is a way to prepare for them financially. Consider risk management to protect your wealth during unexpected circumstances. Have you considered diversifying your investment portfolio? Do you have an emergency fund? Sit down with your financial advisor to create a risk management strategy to ensure you are prepared in the event of a financial windfall. 

How do you and your partner handle budgeting?

  1. We create a joint budget together
  2. Each manages their own finances
  3. We don’t have a specific budgeting strategy

Whether you and your partner have a financial plan together or separately, it is important to maintain a budget to ensure a healthy financial future. If you are struggling to create a budget, talk to your financial advisor. Together, you can come up with a plan fit to your unique financial situation and goals. 

Chocolate and flowers may steal the spotlight this Valentine’s Day, but remember financial planning is an act of love and the heart of your family’s future! Setting the groundwork for a stable future through financial planning is a powerful way to show your loved ones just how much you care about their well-being. Contact the Blakely Financial team today to get started. 

Blakely Financial, Inc. is an independent financial planning and investment management firm that provides clarity, insight, and guidance to help our clients attain their financial goals. Engage with the entire Blakely Financial team at WWW.BLAKELYFINANCIAL.COM  to see what other financial tips we can provide towards your financial well-being.
Commonwealth Financial Network® or Blakely Financial does not provide legal or tax advice. You should consult a legal or tax professional regarding your individual situation.

4 Ways to Prepare for a Prosperous Financial Future

The first few months of the year are the perfect opportunity for introspection, strategic planning, and establishing goals. This period is especially crucial for managing your personal finances. By evaluating your present financial situation, setting goals, and laying the foundation for the future, you can significantly influence your financial objectives. In this blog, we will delve into four practical measures you can implement to ensure a secure financial future.

1. Develop Goals and Priorities

Each person and each financial situation is unique. As a result, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to creating your financial plan. Each individual has their own goals and unique objectives for the future. As you identify your needs, wants, and wishes, it’s also important to think about your long and short-term financial goals. For example, are you interested in retiring in the next 10-15 years? Is buying a second home in the next 2 years feasible? Taking the time to review your goals from the past, as well as outlining goals for the future, will help you lay the foundation for success. 

Talk to your financial advisor to develop a financial game plan for your particular objectives. Be sure to consistently re-visit and re-evaluate your plan and priorities to ensure you’re on track to reach your goals. 

2. Identify All Assets and Liabilities

Next, conduct a thorough review of your assets and liabilities. Start by compiling a comprehensive list of your liquid assets and tangible properties. This detailed inventory provides a clear view of your financial standing and is an opportune time to re-evaluate your beneficiary designations. Next, identify any liabilities you may have, such as mortgages, auto loans, student loans, and so forth. With a clear picture of your assets and liabilities, it’s time to consider your income. Are there any bonuses or salary increases expected this year? If so, how will they impact your financial planning? Utilize all this information to refine and update your yearly financial plan accordingly.

3. Identify Any Barriers to Achieving Your Goals

With your liabilities and assets clearly outlined, it’s now important to recognize any obstacles that might prevent you from reaching your financial goals. These barriers may include existing debts, like student loans, that limit your capacity to save. Acknowledging your personal financial constraints is an essential piece to planning. When you acknowledge potential barriers, you and your financial advisor are able to create a more realistic set of financial goals based on your individual situation.  

4. Think About What Keeps You Up at Night

As you’re planning for the year, think about what’s keeping you up at night. For many, one question often looms large: how will I plan for long-term care without burdening my children? Long-term care insurance emerges as a practical solution, offering a versatile approach to funding care needs, whether for a nursing home or at-home care. This type of insurance not only provides peace of mind but also features options like receiving a cash benefit or allocating funds to your estate. If benefits are directed to your estate upon passing, they are typically exempt from income tax and can bypass the probate process. Consult with a financial advisor about long-term care insurance, as it can be a vital part of your estate planning strategy to ensure you’re prepared for any future care requirements.

Remember, preparing for a prosperous financial future is not only about financial planning but about setting the stage for a secure and fulfilling life ahead. The steps you take today can shape your financial tomorrow. Are you ready to plan the remainder of your year? Contact the Blakely Financial team today. 

 

Blakely Financial, Inc. is an independent financial planning and investment management firm that provides clarity, insight, and guidance to help our clients attain their financial goals. Engage with the entire Blakely Financial team at WWW.BLAKELYFINANCIAL.COM  to see what other financial tips we can provide towards your financial well-being.
Commonwealth Financial Network® or Blakely Financial does not provide legal or tax advice. You should consult a legal or tax professional regarding your individual situation.
How to Evaluate Your Financial Health

How to Evaluate Your Financial Health

As we approach the midpoint of the year, it’s the perfect time to check in on your financial health.  To help you assess your financial health, we’ve compiled a list of key indicators to gauge your financial well-being. By reviewing these indicators, you can make informed decisions toward achieving your financial goals.  

1. Do you stick to a budget?

A budget is an integral part of your financial plan. A budget can keep you from overspending and help you stay on track with saving. If you don’t have a budget yet, it’s not too late to create one. Alternatively, if you have a budget but it doesn’t seem to be working, you can change tactics.

 There are several budgeting methods you can use, some of which include: 

  • The 50/30/20 budgeting rule: With the 50/30/20 budget, you allocate your income into three main categories according to percentages. 50% goes to “needs” (such as groceries, housing, and utilities), 30% goes to “wants” (such as entertainment, shopping, and takeout), and 20% goes to savings (towards an emergency fund, retirement, or long-term goals). 
  •  Zero-based budgeting: The zero-based budgeting method (also known as the zero-sum budget) encourages you to give every cent a purpose. When you’re done allocating where your income goes, there shouldn’t be any money left without a plan for it. 
  • Cash envelope budgeting: The envelope system (also known as cash stuffing) allows you to physically portion out your monthly income in specific categories and sort them into envelopes. Similar to the zero-based budgeting method, you would make a plan for every penny. 

2. How much do you spend?

The aim is to live below your means. If you spend less than you make, then you’re off to a good start. 

Tracking expenses is a helpful way to determine if you’re living below your means. You can use a spreadsheet, write each expense down in a notebook, or use a budgeting app. After you have tracked your expenses for at least one month, you will have a realistic idea of how much you spend. 

3. Are you saving?

Setting up direct deposit or automatic transfers into your savings from your checking account each payday are great ways to ensure that you are saving a set amount of money, rather than spending it.

4. Are you prepared for unexpected expenses?

Having an emergency fund for unexpected bills, emergencies, or major life events/changes is a necessary piece of your financial health. Ideally, you should have enough in your savings to cover 3-6 months of expenses.

5. Are you set to reach your financial goals?

In order to ensure you will reach your financial goals, it’s important to identify what your goals are. Write down your short-term and long-term savings goals, and be sure to make these goals measurable with deadlines. If you need a more sustainable approach to your finances, working with a financial advisor can make all the difference.

When you are financially secure, life feels more manageable. If your plan needs some tweaking, consult with your trusted financial advisor today to stay financially healthy. 

Blakely Financial, Inc. is an independent financial planning and investment management firm that provides clarity, insight, and guidance to help our clients attain their financial goals. Engage with the entire Blakely Financial team at WWW.BLAKELYFINANCIAL.COM  to see what other financial tips we can provide towards your financial well-being.
Securities and advisory services offered through Commonwealth Financial Network®, Member FINRA/SIPC, a Registered Investment Adviser.