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Investment planning is all about the detail of how to invest your money.

Investment Planning.

Investment planning is all about the detail of how to invest your money.

Investment could include shares, bonds, and cash, in all sorts of different companies, all over the world. A lot of investment managers will offer this service, but we go a little further. A group of investments managed together is called a “portfolio”.


Rather than asking you to complete questionnaires about your attitude to risk, we talk to you about it all. The output of a questionnaire may tell you you’re a “Balanced” investor, and thus recommend a “Balanced” investment solution. We take the time to explain what this all means and break down all the jargon. We also work out if the level of risk you might initially want to take, is right for you and your future plans, and if it’s not, we will advise you and educate you to take the level of risk that is right for you.

We will also review the level of risk you are taking on an ongoing basis to make sure that as your plans change, your investment will adapt.

Asset Allocation

This is how much of your money we invest into different things. Research shows that getting the right asset allocation is the most important investment decision you can make. Should you be in shares, should you be in cash, should you be in lower risk bonds? We will help guide you through all of this.

Time Frame

When it comes to investing, your time frame is really important as this will determine the level of risk you can / need to take as well as whether your goals are possible. It may be that your parents lived into their 90s, and thus we should probably plan for a similar age for you, it may be that you’re happy to run out of money by age 80 and just live on the Super after that!

Again, we will review this with you as your plans change over time.

Getting Your Structures Right

One of the first things we do is assess whether the structures you have are appropriate for your long term financial plans, and where to make the investment from if there are a few options. This may involve discussions with lawyers or accountants, but we will consider:

  • Do you have a trust? If so, should you still have one, and if not, do you need one?
  • Do you have any companies? Again, do you still need them if so
  • Do you have children from previous relationships or a Contracting Out Agreement (pre-nup)? If not, should you have one?
  • Should investments be in joint or sole names?

Strategies for Withdrawal

Do you need a regular income from your investments and if so, should this be monthly, quarterly, annually, or just on an ad hoc basis. Depending on your situation, we work with you to create a plan that meets your needs when it comes to getting an income from your investments.

Our portfolios can be set up to give you a regular and guaranteed withdrawal amount, irrespective of the investment performance, so when it comes to retiring, you can simply replace your salary with a withdrawal from investments.

Review and Ongoing Monitoring

It’s our job to monitor your investments on an ongoing basis, so you don’t have to. We look at performance, compare to peers, compare to expectations, analyse value for money, and construct the best portfolio we can for you.

Things change though, both in the investment markets and also with you. We therefore generally meet with clients every 6 months to a year in order to review any changes in your plans or goals. We do a deep dive into the investment portfolio at least every 3 years to make sure it’s still the best it can be, but also monitor everything month to month just in case changes are required.

Generally, we like to keep changes to a minimum when it comes to what you invest in, as every change costs money, and when we construct an investment portfolio, we do so with the intention that it should be in place for many years.

Meet David & Sandra

Age: 54 & 52

Situation: Work Optional

David and Sandra don’t have a set retirement date. Not because they can’t retire, but because they’re not sure when (or if) they want to stop working.

David is a teacher and Sandra is a doctor. They both enjoy their careers — their work adds value and meaning to their lives. They’ve worked for decades to excel in their fields and they aren’t ready to leave their passions simply because they’re nearing traditional “retirement” age.

The challenge isn’t overcoming any financial mistakes or limitations, they’ve been doing all the right things:

  • Generating high incomes
  • Repaying their mortgage
  • Saving money
  • Protecting themselves with the right types of insurance

So what’s the problem? David and Sandra wonder if they’re missing something. Is their current plan right for them? They admit… they don’t know what they don’t know.

As they approach the next stage of life, they want an expert to help them make strategic decisions with their money. They also want help navigating taxes in retirement.

While David and Sandra aren’t in a hurry to retire, they want to know they have the option.

David and Sandra weren’t sure where to begin, which is why they pursued professional help from a financial planner. Plus, they’re busy. They don’t want to get bogged down trying to figure everything out on their own.

When David and Sandra hired a financial planner, they were concerned about more than just their investments. They wanted help with the entire financial picture, especially better utilising their trust. A comprehensive plan was put together that met all their needs:

  • A tax-efficient investment strategy to reduce risk and improve returns.
  • Reduced investment costs.
  • Improved asset allocation to better align with their goals.
  • A smart, sustainable rebalancing strategy.
  • Allocation of funds to the trust and a review with the lawyer to ensure the beneficiaries were collect and the memorandum of wishes updated.

David and Sandra now enjoy the peace of mind that comes from a clear financial plan. They have more energy and mental space to dedicate toward what they enjoy — knowing they have the choice to retire when the time is right.

Note: The above case study is hypothetical and does not involve an actual Balance Wealth client. No portion of the content should be construed by a client or prospective client as a guarantee that he/she will experience the same or certain level of results or satisfaction if Balance Wealth is engaged to provide financial planning services.