How Often Should I Review My Financial Plan?
Today’s question is all about financial planning and in particular, how often you should be reviewing your financial plan and making adjustments. That’s a two-parter, folks.
First of all, I’m a big believer that anytime you have changes in your financial life is when you should be reviewing your financial plan. Believe it or not, one small change over here could have a massive trickle-down effect, not just in the short-term as far as other accounts go, but in the long-run as far as your ability to save in other areas.
What I mean by changes are any increases in take-home pay, or perhaps decreases in take-home pay as a result of an increase in expenses somewhere else. Maybe you got a new car, and your lease payment just went from $200 to $400 a month. That’s a meaningful difference. It might not feel that way on paper, but you need to know that an extra $200 a month going here means $200 a month that can’t be going somewhere else.
Again, anytime you have changes, increase in pay, decrease in pay, increase in expenses, that’s when you really need to sit down and ask yourself how that impacts you in other areas of your financial planning. As far as making adjustments, you don’t want to be reactive, and you especially don’t want to over overreact when it comes to some changes.
So, just sit down and talk through things. Look at everything from 10,000 feet and say, “Okay, I’ve got this change in my life. Do I need to make a change as a result?” Don’t overreact, but again, I feel anytime you have changes it’s very important to go back to square one, look at the overall financial plan from afar and see if any adjustments need to be made.