Managing your wealth is like raising children: You don’t know how to do it because you’ve never done it. By the time you know how to raise children, the kids are grown. Managing wealth is similar.
Here are 9 wealth management tips that will help you keep and grow your money while enjoying the journey. Don’t learn to manage your wealth after it’s gone! Like everything that’s important, wealth requires management.
Wealth management tips aren’t always pragmatic. I’ve found in coaching clients who have been very successful professionally, it helps to look behind the apparent reasons for not having achieved their desired level of wealth.
The reasons often have little to do with their current financial situation.
Once we find and eliminate those hidden reasons, they’re free to actualize their potential.
With this in mind, here’s the next wealth management tip: Identify what wealth is to you. Is it a certain net worth? Is it a level of income? Does wealthy always describe someone else? How do you feel about having wealth?
Most of us have a negative connotation of wealth. It’s okay for other people, but it’s not okay for you to be wealthy.
Dig deep inside your mind on the questions above. There’s a good chance that what you’ll find reveals every mistake you’re making with your money.
Get Comfortable with the Word Wealth
People avoid the word wealth like the plague when dealing with their own money. It feels like bragging, or just plain wrong.
Use the word wealth no matter how much your net worth is.
To get even more comfortable with wealth, use long form when you’re writing numbers in your planning. For example, write out $1,000,000, not $1MM. Write or type $100,000, not $100K.
Treat your Wealth Like a Business
Why wouldn’t you treat your wealth as a business or job? It’s bigger than your career or any single aspect of your money.
If you work for someone else, think of your wealth management as a job. It is. Businesses and jobs take time, attention, and education to thrive. The payoff is much bigger than any single job or business, however. The payoff is peace and happiness around your wealth.
This is because you have clarity when you manage your wealth like a business, and clarity feels really nice.
Not only this but treating your wealth as a business will help you not outlive your money so you can pay your electric bill when you’re ninety and no longer want to work.
Know Where Your Money Goes
Only when you know where your money is going every month can you decide if it’s going where you want it to go.
If it’s not, you can change where your money is going.
There are a million places your money could be going that don’t have meaningful benefits.
Unneeded clothes, interest, higher than needed wealth management fees, avoidable taxes, cars, and forgotten subscriptions all come to mind quickly, some with a pinch of pain from living and learning.
I am not about scrimping and coupon clipping. I have simply grown to love conscious spending. It feels really great. Look at each place your money goes, and ask yourself if it has meaningful benefits.
How can you know when the stock market exceeds the longest bull market run in history if you don’t stay informed?
How can you know there are screaming bargains in oil if you’re not informed?
How can you know that we’re entering a recession if you’re not informed?
Staying informed in only a few minutes a day has become insanely simple.
As you choose a financial news source that slips easily into your schedule, prioritize that it’s from an unbiased source. These are rare.
For example, politics influence the real financial news. Wealth management services can’t help but be biased toward what they sell. News sources need to keep their advertisers happy.
Always consider what is funding the research or the publication. It will be impossible to find a completely unbiased financial news source, so just be aware that the information will have at least a slight bias.
I still remember this hard learned lesson from way back. In the early 1990’s I bought some pharmacy stocks after reading in my favorite financial news publication some recommendations from a respected medical fund manager. I bought several stocks that were recommended. Shortly afterward, politics entered the picture, as often happens with certain industries, and drug stocks tanked.
Was the fund manager giving bad information? She was sharing with the public companies that she thought were well run, profitable companies based on her expertise. There’s nothing dishonest in that.
But she ran a medical fund. In her interview, could she dissuade investors from investing in drug stocks due to pending political policy changes? She probably couldn’t if she wanted to keep her job.
Choose a source to stay current on overall trends in the financial markets. This may be a podcast you watch once a week, a newsletter, a blog, TV show, or magazine.
Schedule time for wealth management
Making Thursday wealth day gave me permission to spend time researching stocks and taking care of other financial matters. This was a game changer for me. I share this realizing that I am fortunate to run our online businesses from home so I have a flexible schedule. But I have learned that what goes on the calendar, gets done. (This is now a google calendar.)
If it’s on a sticky note, paper list, or on Trello, tasks may get done. If it’s on my calendar, it gets done.
Schedule the amount of time it will take to manage your wealth on your calendar. The amount of time will depend on what needs to get done and how important your wealth is to you.
The more time you schedule for wealth management, the faster you’ll progress.
Use a Digital Tool for Wealth Management Projects
If this list of wealth management tips feels overwhelming at first, just think in terms of the very next step for you personally.
Examples of next steps could be:
-Find a financial news source to stay current
-Review all investments to make sure you understand them
-Choose one alternative income stream based on time, capital and goals
-Assess if any investments are undervalued
-Update financial goals
-Brainstorm income stream ideas
-Update net worth
-Calculate last month’s cash flow
-Calculate how much you could save if you downsized
-Review expenses, prioritize and eliminate
Organize Wealth Management Tasks
Use a project management tool to keep track of the various elements of wealth management. My husband and I have a shared board named Wealth Management in Trello.
Examples of “cards” I have set up on our Wealth Management board are:
-Professionals I might want to meet or hire, such as specialized attorneys and CPA’s
-Newsletters and financial news sources I might want to use
-Research on investments I am considering
-Specific projects, like tax returns and banking projects, with steps outlined
-Podcasts, blogs and websites that provide good information
-Expenses we want to eliminate
-Current subscriptions and courses
-Real estate properties to consider
-Financial advisors that provide good information
-Potential investments ideas
This board allows my husband and I to easily share tasks and stay on track.
Monitor your cash flow
Knowing where your money flows in and out will help you make better wealth management decisions. For example, if you’re not sure whether you need to focus on income or growth, it’s hard to choose investments.
The answer to whether your focus should be on income or growth lies in your goals, your net worth, and your cash flow. Cash flow lays the foundation.
Careful examination of money flowing out can also affect investment decisions. For example, you may see that you would like to lower your taxes with alternative income streams which also have tax benefits.
Or you may see that you want to sell your home because too much money is funding unneeded square footage.
Remember that some expenses are hidden from spending. Annual expenses like property taxes and insurance (if you pay annually to get the discount) can skew your true spending reports.
Taxes and wealth management fees can be also be obscure. Be a detective for where your money flows. Link to how to not outlive your money
Measure your net worth
Know your net worth. Update it once or twice a year, or after a big change from market drops or large increases due to events like bonuses or inheritances.
Value your money
When you have more than enough money to comfortably pay the bills each month, it’s easy to get complacent.
Remember the value of the first money you made.
For example, for me, this was working in a lady’s retail store when I was fourteen. I remember how much I hated the work because I had to bend down to help ladies try on shoes, and my back brace for scoliosis made this almost impossible! The counter to this hardship was having my own money, at last, independent of my parents.
I made the minimum wage of $2.40 an hour. And I valued that money so much. As such, I spent it wisely. Value your money. Use it wisely, especially when there’s extra. When you have extra money it’s easy to forget how important your wealth management is.
Processes Promote Better Wealth Management
Create or use someone else’s processes for your managing your wealth. For example, use a checklist for investment decisions. This way, you don’t have to remember every single thing that you need to consider. Plus, you’re much less likely to forget something important.
Use a process for calculating cash flow. For me, this includes downloading data into a spreadsheet. For most people, an automated bookkeeping system works best.
If you like to keep things very simple, just have a process for reviewing and totaling every place money flows in and out. Do be sure to document and save your findings, though, so you can track your progress.
Ideas for Wealth Management Processes
Have a process or checklists for all elements of your wealth management. Examples of other processes related to our personal wealth management include:
-Tenant turnover at our rental properties
-Ordering new products for our online store
-Building new websites
-Filing and storing important documents
-Selecting stocks for covered calls
-Analyzing a business opportunity
Another area to create processes is for income flows into your banking account if you’re living off investments already
More complex processes can be recorded on video and stored for future use. For example, I video recorded my process for calculating cash flow for my bookkeepers since they tend to turnover every couple of years, and our bookkeeping can be complex with our alternative investments.
Other tasks, like choosing a new investment, require a simple checklist.
Every wealth management tip here is intertwined. For example, you’ll want to know your net worth before making investing decisions. Scheduling wealth management time, a good project management tool, and having a process for doing both of these tasks make it easier. Tracking cash flow provides answers about everything – your quality of life, priorities, and bigger wealth management decisions. And without the right mindset, well, none of it gets done in the most optimal way since your beliefs drive your actions.