The One-Page Financial Plan

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Wouldn’t that be amazing? Is that even possible?

Money and how it effects our everyday lives, relationships and future can cause no end of stress. Ironically, the greater wealth accumulated, the more stressful it can be to manage!

It was therefore with great delight to recently get around to reading Carl Richards (New York Times Columnist & Author of the ‘Behaviour Gap’) – The One-Page Financial Plan, A Simple Way to be Smart About Your Money.

Carl’s focussed yet humorous and engaging style of writing, along with his excellent diagrams and sketches cut straight to the chase, highlighting why it is vital to get really clear on the following;

  1. The Most Important Money Question – Carl asks: “Why is money important to you”? In other words, what is the money for in the first place? The vast majority of people are very unclear on this, normally driven by childhood experiences and their parents’ attitude towards money

  2. Guessing Your Way to a Goal - Many are unclear on their goals, especially trying to commit to goals in 30-40 years’ time, therefore, the majority of people do nothing. Carl suggests: “Don’t be committed to the guess, be committed to the process of guessing.”

  3. Get really clear on your current location - Where are you today and where do you want to go?

The first three chapters (above) alone are very powerful and well worth adding to your reading list.

The remainder of the book doesn’t try to re-invent the wheel (many of the concepts offered are not new however they are tried and tested, and they work!). For me, it’s the first 3 chapters that if you take the time to have these critical conversations with your husband, wife, spouse (or even just yourself) – you will gain tremendous value from the exercise.

I would thoroughly recommend this book for couples and families who may have done a great job up until now but would benefit from taking a step back from their existing accumulated wealth and goals to take a fresh look at exactly where they are headed and most importantly, if their direction is in line with their most important values in life.

So, one-page financial plan, is it possible? In a word yes, by following Carl’s book from start to finish.

The even greater message however is the importance of having a crystal-clear vision of what you want to plan for in the first place!

For my existing clients, if you would like me to send you a copy of the book, please simply drop me a message / email.

Craig Chapman