WHAT IS FINANCIAL PLANNING?
In a strategic sense, financial planning is a broad term for a professional service that can help you better understand your saving and investment goals. These targets may include the preservation of capital, wealth creation or the establishment of future income streams for retirement through superannuation or investments. Risk management strategies and taxation advice also typically fall under the banner of financial planning.
Alternatively, financial planning is about assessing your financial situation, determining objectives and formulating financial strategies that help you achieve financial and lifestyle objectives. In a perfect world, financial planning should become a continuous activity where your goals and objectives are reviewed regularly and performance measured against specific devised targets.
On the flip side, financial planning can be less strategic and more about implementation. It can help you understand the most appropriate insurance product, superannuation or managed fund, share, cash account or credit card and so on.
While budgeting, record keeping, income and net worth statements plus credit and debt management normally fall under the banner of "financial counselling", successful financial planning also involves the mastery of these skills and disciplines.
Given the massive breadth attached to the field that is financial planning, it is unlikely any single person can cater to all your personal financial needs. So financial planning will often involve a financial adviser working with other professionals.