Where to start
It may sound easy, but checking in on your superannuation is a good place to start. You may have an account from your first part-time job that is still active. Since then, you may have had a few different jobs. Is there a statement lying around to help you identify any old accounts? Consolidating these funds alongside your other investments will help to ensure they are working towards your financial goals. Understanding where all assets outside of your cash portfolio live is a key way to maintain a clearer vision of your overall investments. You may be surprised by what you find.
Ask the personal questions and evaluate your plan
Think about setting up your investments by asking yourself questions that reflect your overarching financial goals such as: Are you expecting a baby and require more easily accessed cash flow for the coming years? Or are you 15 years from retirement and can tolerate higher risk for a possibly high return within that period?
Working with a professional who will advocate for you and your goals against market changes is vital. Your first session with your financial adviser can be based around getting to know each other and what boundaries you would like put in place that enable your financial adviser to make informed decisions on your behalf.
How involved do I really need to be?
Often, obsessing over the market and unit price fluctuations day-to-day may trigger panic buying or selling. This can also give you an inaccurate picture of those investments that rely more heavily on long term growth.
But, you do need to be aware of changes in fee structures and market movements to ensure it is appropriately reflected in your investments and your financial goals are accurately accounted for in your portfolio. To help you overcome uncertainty partnering with a financial adviser can help apply your personal financial goals to the decisions they make on your behalf.
Make checking in a habit
Reviewing your investments shouldn’t fall into the ‘too hard basket’. By making investment reviews a habit, you can reduce the stress, as well as some associated risk that comes with not understanding your investments and their growth nature. Always planning ahead, having an agreed contingency plan, and knowing your boundaries is key to feeling comfortable with market changes and trusting the ebb and flow of an investment portfolio.
There are always going to be market fluctuations with downturns and recessions. As we saw in 2020, it can be very easy to be disheartened or overwhelmed by the uncertainty of investing. Aligning with an adviser that you trust and who understands your goals will help to keep your fears at bay, and get on track to achieve your 2021 financial goals through your portfolio.