Sara is in a place many Americans can relate with. She has great potential to achieve the American Dream — defined by Schmansky as having a fulfilling family life and career, without daily and long-term financial worries.
She is in a place where it is difficult to look past the immediate and urgent expenses toward when she will be able to place her focus on the future. At the same time, she has begun positive financial actions by gathering an independent opinion about her current position, creating a plan, and saving for the future.
However, her situation is still fragile and success will require uncomfortable choices for a long-time. In needing to catch-up on her savings, she will have to save more aggressively than if she started her plan earlier.
Sara’s positive attitude and willingness to seek assistance with an assessment of what she needs to do for her financial future speaks volumes about her desire to become financially independent. It is essential that Sara continues to review her progress regularly, monitors her ability to increase savings, and maintains current spending levels. For many in Sara’s situation, working with a financial adviser can achieve the greatest results. Advisers are not experts at planning, but also coaches who can help hold you accountable for staying on the path for the future when the temporary stress of the present is gone.
FPA member Robert Schmansky, CFP®, is founder of Clear Financial Advisors, LLC in Bloomfield Hills, Mich.