Financial Goals Change
My first appointment with a financial planner was back in 2012. My wife and I were recently married and she wanted to get us on the same page financially. Joining finances is not easy. In fact, money is often cited as one of the primary reasons marriages end in divorce.
I was initially reluctant. I had a decent handle on my financial situation and I felt like we could figure it out. What I didn’t know then could fill a dozen blog posts, but the most important item to do was align our financial goals, and how we were going to reach them. We both had steady incomes, some money in the bank, some grad school debt, and wanted to buy a home in the DC area.
Thanks to a strong financial plan (Thanks Anna Sergunina!), we bought our first home less than two years later, paid off all of our grad school debt, and in general were in a good place financially.
Until … life happened.
By life, I mean: we started a family, welcoming a baby boy in 2017. A leaky roof turned into a huge expense. We got a dog. My father passed away. We both changed jobs multiple times. We had some health scares. All while the stock market rose to new heights.
Thanks to the strong financial plan, we were prepared for a few of these life changes. In other cases, our financial goals and circumstances changed enough to need an updated financial plan. The other important takeaway? While I’ve learned a lot since our initial meeting in 2012, I’ve also realized that financial goals change all the time. And knowing the moments your financial plan needs to change along with it are just as important.