You should always shower and brush your teeth. You should always respect your elders and do your homework. And, you should always get a professional financial plan designed exclusively for you and then follow every detail.
While I am a Certified Financial Planner professional, I haven’t prepared a written “financial plan” in years. My initial concern was that a written financial plan tends to be static and winds up in a bookcase. It should be “way-of-life” requiring a continuing conversation between a client and the advisor.
Later, I questioned the value of any plan that advocated Long-Term-Care Insurance, long after such plans changed from fixed-cost premiums to an ever-increasing premiums. It just didn’t sense to recommend rising costs when a client’s income was probably decreasing.
Now, a new study by HealthView Services indicates the lifetime non-Medicare healthcare costs of a healthy 65-year-old couple is expected to exceed $360,000. Ideally, everybody saves that much or have supplemental healthcare insurance. Sadly, the only plan that many people have is to “hope” as hard as they can, that everything would be fine — but hope is not a plan! Managing your own healthcare has never been more important. The doctors do NOT have responsibility for your healthcare. YOU do!
How can financial advisors encourage clients to take responsibility for their own healthcare, without being a busybody and shaking their finger at their clients? Simply tell them your advice, share some success stories of other clients, show them the way by explaining Fitbit & other tools, and most of all, challenge them to save $360,000.
It should be part of our CFP Code of Ethics to focus our client’s attention to this potential unfunded liability.