04 May 2018 Dis·in·te·gra·tion
Disintegration: To lose unity, integrity, or strength by or as if by breaking into parts, as defined by Merriam Webster. Our social, political and institutional systems offer, on a daily basis, glaring examples of the debilitating impact of ‘breaking into parts.’ Self interest and promotion, two of our most natural traits since our beginning, are now amplified by social media to unprecedented heights, or depths, and with terrible effect.
But today, we’ll focus on a more subtle, but equally costly aspect of disintegration at the individual or family level. It’s the idea of making important financial and life decisions without knowing the consequences those decisions will have on the unity and integrity of the family’s wealth and goals.
We see all too regularly the lifestyle cost of unintended consequences and decisions made with incomplete information. The annuity bought when fears were high, that now offers far lower benefits than life’s needs demand, too much life insurance and the wrong kind, more risk exposure than required to meet objectives, or unnecessarily high taxes and volatility generated by excessive trading to meet return goals that actually reduce confidence of achieving goals: These are all examples of decisions made independently of the big picture.
Consider a basketball team with the best players in the nation. Would they play to their potential without a solid game plan and a great coach who makes them much stronger together than they could be individually. You may have the very best CPA in town, a world-class investment manager, a top-notch estate attorney, and a life insurance broker with every letter of the alphabet following his name, but without a comprehensive life plan and the right advisor to help you make the best comprehensive decisions possible in light of your whole plan, your wealth and your lifestyle will suffer, and you likely will not even know it. No one’s keeping your score, they’re all too busy touting their own stats.
By integrating the various components of your financial life into a unified plan and process, you add demonstrably more strength, confidence, and purpose to yours and everyone of your advisors’ efforts. Opportunities are revealed in the process that would otherwise go unnoticed. For example, we almost universally see that new clients have lost far more of their wealth through unnecessary expenses and taxes as well as sleepless nights when they were encouraged to take more risk or trade trade more often than was needed to meet or exceed their life goals.
A well-designed financial life plan, kept on track with periodic reviews will ensure that all of your experts are pulling in the same direction. When needs, opportunities or challenges require a decision, we will work with you to consider as many what-if scenarios as are indicated in that circumstance to enable you to objectively select the very best one for your plan, without conflict or professional bias that can occur when decisions are made from a limited perspectives.
If unity, integrity and strength are descriptors you want for your financial life, please give us a call and don’t delay. Don’t give disintegration any more time to drain your wealth.