Health Care Shock Creates Pile of Debt: The Plan to Pay It Down
Americans plan for many things. We plan our vacations, we plan our retirements, we plan our weekends. But very few Americans plan on becoming disabled, on becoming ill, on having to leave work for an extended period of time. That's unfortunate because nothing can wreak havoc on a financial plan like a health-care shock. Case in point: David and Marcia Palmers, a married couple who live in the Pacific Northwest. More>
From a planner's side of the desk, it's important to start at the beginning. Financial planners and clients typically mutually define a client's personal and financial goals, needs, and priorities. The next step is what financial planners call the data gathering: Financial planners will obtain all the quantitative information and documents about a client before any recommendation is made and/or implemented. More>
The Bottom Line
As with most plans, we generally want to clear the decks of debt first, then begin the planning process in earnest where we explore goals, values, and what the Palmers care most about funding in the world so that we can get them on the road for building a base of assets that will provide a secure income in their later years. If we don't get past the debt, we can't get to the planning, and the time value of money is lost forever as the years tick by. The Palmers have enthusiastically embraced a tough solution and dedicated themselves to the task of paying debt down first. We congratulate them in their efforts knowing it is difficult and necessary.
Many folks who are in debt are also suffering stress and therefore may feel somewhat paralyzed about seeking help from a financial planner. If you are unable to make progress on your own, consulting with a financial planner may help you immeasurably to get past your debts, stabilize your financial situation, and move on to planning your financial future. More>