You know that drawer you have in your kitchen? The one with pens, staples, batteries, receipts, bits of string, coupons and a feather? We all have one. A drawer of independently useful items that together offer, well…a big mess. And while it desperately requires organization, your busy lifestyle keeps it on the back burner.
You may actually have another one of these “junk drawers” that’s related to your finances. This catch-all includes all of the financial decisions you have made in your life thus far: group benefits offered from various employers over the years; the 401Ks you’ve rolled into IRAs; the auto, homeowners and life insurance policies you’ve purchased; the savings bonds acquired from childhood birthdays; and so on. Much like the physical drawer in your kitchen, this hodgepodge of financial products is most likely disorganized, uncoordinated, non-integrated, inefficient, ineffective and lacks control. And while this financial collective has likely fallen victim to eroding factors – such as inflation, insurance premiums, fees and taxes – your busy lifestyle again trumps tackling its reorganization.
The creation of the financial junk drawer is almost inevitable without the financial guidance of professionals. That said, even some of the pros may actually add more clutter to your drawer. Instead of creating an individualized, big picture approach to your financial plan, some financial advisors tend to stick with boilerplate strategies that simply plug in your personal numbers to create a set of calculations to quantify your needs and goals. Seek out a financial professional with qualities that resemble that of an architect: someone who will listen to your needs and desires, encourage your participation in the process and work within your budget. This type of skilled financial expert may assist you in selecting optimal products from financial institutions by providing you with the knowledge you need to enhance each product’s advantages while minimizing its disadvantages.
If you think you indeed have a financial junk drawer, stop delaying de-cluttering and start regaining control of your wealth. Seek out a financial representative well-versed in the Lifetime Economic Acceleration Process (LEAP), who may help you simplify and better position yourself to reach your full financial potential. Need more incentive? It requires no out-of-pocket outlay as the initial goal. Your LEAP financial representative will act as your own personal Sherpa – a knowledgeable guide trained to hold your hand throughout the restructuring process. You’ll gain access to free LEAP tools, such as the Protection, Savings & Growth Model, a one-of-a-kind, proprietary, macro-econometric financial model. Acting as a financial game board, this model allows you to dump out your financial junk drawer and populate your “board” with your financial pieces. Once you’ve put each of your financial products in its designated space, you may find it easier to see the big picture, and feel an increased ability to make educated “moves” regarding your money and assets. Consider your collective opponents in this game all of the institutions that are in a position to potentially decrease your wealth, from the IRS to financial institutions to college. The key to possibly improving your odds in “winning” the game is making money moves that may preserve your wealth, and minimizing the mistakes that may let your opponents gain more control. With the LEAP model’s low-risk, high rate of return objective, you may feel empowered and motivated to finally purge the junk drawer and effectively navigate and manage your financial future.
Scott Karl is a licensed financial representative in Fresno, CA. Since 1994, he’s provided a variety of financial products for his clients, including long-term disability income, health plans, mutual funds, life and annuities, qualified plans, retirement plans, college education plans and legal services.