At Carbon Financial, we want to help you write the life story that you have dreamed of through our financial coaching. A typical question that we are often asked is, “when should we seek out your advice?” My answer to this is, that very much depends on you. However, we do recommend that no matter what path you want your future life story to take, you plan your retirement as soon as possible.
We find that new and existing clients have an idea of where they want to be in their lives by a certain age, but the truth is, to facilitate your dream life story, the earlier you start having discussions around how your finances will support you, the smoother the transition will be.
The people that I meet through my role are successful individuals who have achieved the role of partner, typically in a law or a professional services firm. Broadly speaking, these partners are working 70+ hour weeks and have done so their whole career.
Writing your life story
If you have reached Partner level in your firm, you will have probably worked incredibly hard to get there. Often putting in extra hours and burning the candle at both ends, you may be looking towards winding down and potentially retiring by the time you reach 60 years of age.
When you come to us for financial coaching, the first thing that we need to help you visualise is what you want your life to look like, and how we can work together to achieve that dream life. Such considerations include what retirement will look like to you. One option that our clients typically pursue is full retirement from their role in a firm, turning their attention to a passion project. Another alternative might be to explore the opportunity of going part time or into consulting, which allows more freedom to reflect on what is important as well as still taking advantage of your earning potential. This tends to provide a little more flexibility with timelines.
No matter how you wish to wind down from your Partner role in the future, the considerations you need to make are the same, but the timelines that Carbon coaches you through will differ depending on your individual life story and ambitions.
Are you looking to retire within the next 10 years? For you, retirement might look different from the average UK citizen if, for example, you are looking to take a voluntary position on the board of a charity that’s close to your heart. You’ve spent your life building momentum through your fast-paced career and now is the time to channel that energy into other passions. What is important, now, is that you build complete clarity around how you plan to fund this lifestyle change, ensuring you have the financial freedom to pursue these other passions.
Working with a financial planner can help you achieve this clarity as early as 10 years before you plan to retire from your full-time role. It may seem strange to discuss this in what seems to be the height of your career, but if you are looking to leave full time practice at around age 60, gaining complete clarity in your late 40s and early 50s could provide you and your family peace of mind.
Part-time and consultancy options
If you feel that you are not quite ready to completely leave the fast-paced lifestyle, but are considering keeping your toe dipped in your chosen field a little longer, working part time or as an external consultant could be for you.
Our coaching would help you understand if this lifestyle would be financially viable, considering your pensions, investments, and any equity in your firm that you may have. This is the same visualisation process we would use if you were interested in retiring fully, however we have the luxury of a bit more time to plan for your future if you choose this route as you will still have income to bolster your personal finances.
For clients that choose this route, beginning the journey with us in your early – mid 50s would be recommended.
At Carbon Financial, we want to personally get to know you and your ambitions for the future as early as possible so we can coach you towards having the financial freedom to live the life you have always dreamed of. The more clarity we can give you at an earlier age on how you intend to fund your retirement, the better. The rest, as they say, is up to you...
Richard Wadsworth is a Director at Carbon and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
We have offices in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen, Perth and London. You can contact us at any of our offices, or by email.
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