Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk, Bill Gates – What do they all have in common? Well, besides being the wealthiest individuals on earth, they have large teams around them. They understand the importance of leveraging their time to create financial success.
Using billionaires as an example is not always my favorite way to drive home a certain point. In this case though, it does go to show the mindset of how financially successful people create wealth. They understand that their most valuable asset is TIME.
Your financial team should be built to leverage your time so you can spend your most valuable asset focusing on the things that matter: friends, family, hobbies, and trying to keep it under 100 strokes on an 18 hole golf course.
So, without further ado, let’s look at the 5 team members every household should have supporting their financial success.
An accountant can help file your tax returns, make tax projections, and generally let you know about your blind spots (the things you don’t know about). The IRS is not fun to deal with, especially in the middle of COVID. Using an accountant is absolutely worth your time to offload your tax preparation duties.
2. Insurance Agent
Most people need insurance in some form: life, disability, long term care, home/renters, auto, umbrella: the list goes on. How much insurance is enough? What type do you need (life insurance comes in many forms)? An agent can help steer you in the right direction without wasting hours researching what makes sense for you. Fair warning: while insurance agents can help pick the right policy for you, they are usually compensated through commissions. Ie, the bigger premium you pay, the bigger commission the agent gets.
3. Estate Planning Attorney
Drafting legal documents is absolutely something you should not be doing on your own. An attorney can help customize your last wishes. For example, do you want your entire estate to go to your only son who is currently 20 years old? Do you want to set up some restrictions on when he is able to access the money? Having an estate planning attorney can help shed light on legal aspects you might not even know about (once again, blind spots). Stop wasting time on legal zoom trying to put together an estate plan with duct tape and glue.
4. Investment Advisor
An investment advisor will help guide you through the ups, downs, lefts, and rights the market goes through. Eventually the market will get crazy and the you-know-what will hit the fan. Are you prepared to stay the course not just in the lows, but especially in times of market highs (avoiding investment fads)? Having a diligent investment advisor on your side will help keep your investments on course even in the most turbulent times. Stop wasting time trying to time the market, watching Jim Cramer talk craziness, and reading reddit threads on “Why now is the time to buy Gamestop/Blackberry/AMC/etc”.
5. Financial Planner
Yes, I’m going to sound biased and I don’t care. A comprehensive financial planner (hopefully you’re working with a CFP®) is quite possibly the most important piece of your team. They tie together how your insurance will affect your estate plan, how your investments will affect your taxes and how they’ll all affect each other in the grand plan of life.
Wearing Multiple Hats
It’s possible for overlap between the team members:
- The investment advisor can also be an insurance agent AND a financial planner (I know, because this used to be me!)
- The Financial Planner can also be the investment advisor: quite common and this is how Branson Financial Planning is set up.
- It’s possible to be all 5! Very rare but I have seen some individuals wear all 5 hats. I’m always skeptical of a jack of all trades (they’re usually a master at none!)
5 Bonus Team Members
The team members above are all your core team members. There are others you could add that will improve your quality of life:
Career / Life Coach or mentor: Struggling to find what career works for you? Are you just not getting to the next level? Work with a career coach to help catapult your career.
Real Estate Agent: Owning a home is the American dream! An agent can make that process easier and smooth.
Personal Trainer / Nutritionist: Health and wellness keeps the mind and body clean and ready to tackle life’s everyday adventures. .
Psychologist / Therapist: Your mental health is quite possibly more important than anything in the world. Without your mental stability, how will you enjoy life?
Primary Care Physician: Seeing a doctor regularly helps prevent sickness and ensures your body is receiving the care it needs.
Building your financial dream team will help you get back your most precious asset: TIME. Time with your family. Time with your friends. Time to do the things that you truly love. Stop wasting time on things that would be better suited with help from a professional and start leveraging yourself to live your best and happiest life!