Podcast Episode 170: How Financial Planning Differs By Profession
The goal for every financial plan we build is personalization that meets an individual or a family’s needs for retirement, and we have gotten to know these different personalities well over the years. We’ve helped thousands of families prepare and get to retirement so we have a good understanding of the different nuances that come with different types of professionals.
In this episode of the Money Wisdom podcast, we’re going to discuss the financial planning challenges and advantages that come along with different professions.
As you can imagine, teachers tend to prefer and organized approach. They like predictability so they gravitate towards consistent savings approaches. One unique thing we’ve seen from a lot of teachers is their partner often has the opposite personality. With that, we end up mediating a plan that makes both parties comfortable.
This is a very broad group of people because of all the different types of doctors. This leads to a need for customization because we have to meet the needs of each unique person. What we have seen is that many doctors are still doing retirement planning on their own but we’ve seen the ability to utilize flexibility if they own their own practice.
This profession tends to like things very organized and structured. They also often look for problems in things that need to be fixed, and this can lead to problems in financial planning. Sometimes this leads to them missing some things, but not always. Engineers certainly like structured plans that allow them to know the outcome will be.
Entrepreneurs/Small Business Owners
Many people assume that entrepreneurs like to take a risk in their investments because of their approach to work and life. But we’ve seen that they crave simplicity in other parts of their life. They want predictability in their investments. There’s already so much invested in what they’re trying to build so this aspect of their life is not nearly as risky.
The challenge we have with realtors is an unpredictable income. Sure, there’s a lot of upside in earnings when you work in real estate, but there are stretches of time where you might struggle to make commissions. The good thing for people that are self-employed is that there are tremendous retirement plans that can be set up.
The biggest weakness of financial planning is how slow it can be for people to move up the pay chart. It’s a process that’s very structured and predictable, which is great but also a challenge. These employees will tend to have pensions and 401(k) plans and they have the ability to save money in an automatic way, which is great.
In today’s episode, we take a few questions from listeners before we wrap up the show. The first comes in from a new grandfather who wants to do something financial for their grandson. He asked about a college fund, life insurance, and stocks. Each of these is a great option and has benefits. College funds provide tax advantages and can be shifted to multiple beneficiaries if needed. Life insurance also sets a good example for kids. And stocks can teach great lessons when they’re old enough to understand how they work.
Our next question is about paying off debt versus saving for retirement. If you plan to retire in five years, our advice is typically to have all your debt paid off with the exception being your mortgage. We hate to tell anyone to stop contributing money to a 401(k) but that might be the best idea. You’ll always want to speak with a professional to get a plan in place to see if that’s the best solution, but credit to you for saving so well through the years.
Our last mailbag question is about the volatility of the stock market. If this is something you worry about, then you might need to make changes in your portfolio. You need to have confidence in your savings plan and your investments. Don’t take on too much risk that makes you worry anytime the market moves down. That’s exactly what our Money Map helps you with.
[0:58] – Teachers
[3:00] – Doctors
[6:37] – Engineers
[8:09] – Entrepreneur/Small Business Owner
[10:51] – Realtors
[12:13] – Government Employees
[16:55] – Mailbag Question 1 on College Funding
[21:07] – Mailbag Question 2 on Improving Debt
[22:42] – Mailbag Question 3 on the Stock Market
Thanks for listening to this episode. We’ll be back again next week for another show.