Truth is Uncertainty…and We Must Plan For It
Hiring a planning firm may result in a number of strategic recommendations to help your family more efficiently and effectively align your financial resources with your goals and objectives. But how might a financial planning firm help an individual or family deal with uncertainty? We make educated guesses, but ultimately, contrary to our heart’s desire, we cannot predict the future, and that is the truth. We don’t know when the next market crash will be, we don’t know when you are going to die, if inflation will get out of control or we’ll have a stock market boom like the 1990’s again in the near future. If we don’t know these things, should advisors and planners make predictions? Predictions are made every day by the financial industry. Just today, I had a client email me a link that was an “End of America” web link and ask my opinion based on someone’s prediction of an imminent market crash. I’ve also been emailed predictions of the Dow Jones industrial average reaching 20,000 by 2015. With such varied predictions, how do we plan for the future? In our firm, and contrary to many “advisors” in the industry, we don’t believe in making predictions. No one, and I mean no one, has proven their ability to consistently predict future market events over long periods of time to say nothing of the inability to predict inevitable, but unpredictable life events. So if we don’t make predictions, how do we help you plan for the future and deal with uncertainty through thoughtful and meaningful planning and investment advice that will help you sleep at night in a world of uncertainty?
We feel the best thing we can do is prepare our clients financially for virtually anything that could happen and evaluate the impact to their plan based on those events. If you properly plan for a host of unforeseen events, and you need money during one of those events, then there should be a smart place to get that money. If not, we haven’t planned well. Undoubtedly, we all have to deal with the uncertainty of health, length of life, and investment markets. We feel our role is to help clients prepare and plan for uncertainty not protect them from it. We do not see ourselves as just money managers, but as true planners helping individuals to learn and act on the truth and not on “predictions” that may or may not have merit. As has always been the case, the truth is, there will always be uncertainty and we must prepare and plan for it. This does not mean we do not make educated guesses as a part of thoughtful planning, but undoubtedly your plan will be much more secure adapting to and planning for uncertainty than banking on any one “expert’s” prediction.