8 free online resources to help improve your financial wellbeing
In my last post I set out five actions you could take to improve your financial wellbeing. In this post you’ll find links to eight free online resources which might help you improve your financial situation, as well as a tool to help you work out the value of professional advice.
Finimize (in which I am an investor) provides millennials the financial news in < 3 mins in the form of a daily email or via their interactive app. Visit their website or the app store.
Defining money related values and goals
Most of us find it hard to articulate financial goals, particularly longer-term ones. I’ve said many times before that it’s OK to have ‘fuzzy’ money goals, as long as you develop good daily money habits.
But the clearer you can be about what good looks like and the role of money in achieving it, daily habits and decisions become easier.
Fiscal Engineers in Nottingham, founded by my friend Shane Mullins, has produced a really nice short ebook called The Art of Wealth, which sets out some really nice principles for thinking about money.
Smart Financial in Manchester, run by my friend Steve Martin, has created a 12 step guide to financial freedom to help you understand how to build enough wealth to be financially free.
Engage Financial Services, run by a lovely chap called Sam Soma, has developed a really useful one-page summary that he uses with new clients. You could use it to stimulate discussion between you and your partner, or to prepare for a meeting with a professional financial planner.
First Wealth, run by my good chums Anthony Villis and Robert Caplan, has developed a really useful online goal question tool. Use it to help clarify what you want your money to help you achieve.
EQ Investors, led by John Spiers – who is a financial services entrepreneur, for whom I have the utmost respect - has developed a free online basic financial health check tool. With minimal inputs you can get an initial traffic light type assessment of your current and potential long-term financial situation, and pointers on areas that need attention.
I advocate adopting an evidence-based investment approach. Rock Wealth, based in Cheltenham, have produced a really good 45 minute documentary on evidence based investing, which also includes comments from me (but don’t let that put you off).
My old firm, Bloomsbury Wealth, has a comprehensive and well written investment philosophy, but they also have this really simple one page summary. Use it to both improve your understanding and also to use as a benchmark for the written investment philosophies from any financial planning firms you might be thinking of working with.
Engaging a professional financial planner can make a lots of sense if your situation is complex, you have significant wealth, or you need help getting and staying financially well organised. A planner can also provide invaluable support to those who have lower financial confidence and suddenly come into money from inheritance, compensation, divorce or redundancy.
I recommend to only engage a firm that is an Accredited or Chartered Financial Planning firm, and which charges FIXED FEES not linked to the size of your wealth. This removes any potential conflict of interests and ensures that you have total transparency over what you are being charged and can therefore assess whether you are getting good value.
My friends at Capital Asset Management have created a fees calculator to help you understand the benefits of fixed advice fees compared to the traditional percentage of investments approach.
Best of luck with these online resources.
Do let me know how you get on.