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Importance of Financial Planning: Definition, Importance, Types, Steps

Engaging in financial planning before planning a journey is imperative to fulfil financial goals and aspirations. Financial planning is important to design an investment path so that your funds can be better used by maximising your profits and minimising the risk factors. Your investment journey may encounter hurdles according to market volatility, but sticking to your budget will help you handle the difficulties better.

In this blog, we will learn about the fundamentals of financial planning, the importance of financial planning, and how to proceed with it. Follow this road map to succeed in your investment journey by defining the major financial planning steps.

Financial Planning: Definition

Financial planning is the process of determining various financial goals, quantifying them while considering the factor of inflation, and developing a plan for investment to achieve both short-term and long-term goals. It also assists you to be prepared to deal with unanticipated risk factors such as premature death, major illness, sudden termination of employment, etc. 

The significance of financial planning supports investors in attaining their financial goals, such as long-term financial security, purchasing a property, owning a residence, family planning, and so on. It enables you to retain financial control and achieve all your dreams and aspirations.

Importance of Financial Planning

To understand why financial planning is important, you must understand the financial goals it helps to achieve. Financial planning helps to streamline the process of determining and achieving your financial objectives. 

Listed below are some necessary pointers to explain the importance of financial planning:

  • Financial planning helps ensure your life savings and funds get better and more secure returns.
  • Financial planning is important in a business for maintaining financial stability by ensuring the proper inflow and outflow of finances.
  • Financial planning ensures that fund managers can easily invest in companies where financial planning is adhered to.
  • Financial planning is crucial for a business’s growth and long-term survival. With the help of effective financial plans, businesses can conduct expansion programmes to grow their business. 
  • It minimises the degree of risk brought about by changing market conditions by allocating enough liquid funds that can accessed easily.
  • Financial planning is important for eliminating the barriers and obstacles that come in the way of organisational growth. This guarantees that the company’s funds’ profitability and stability are maintained.
  • Having a proper investment plan is also beneficial for you to save tax under section 80C of Income Tax. You may invest in tax-efficient investment areas keeping in your asset allocation and financial objectives.

Kinds of Financial Planning

Some of the major types of financial planning are stated as follows:

1. Investment Planning

This type of financial planning is where various financial policies and strategies are adopted for future investments. You can decide on the type of investment and the amount of funds you want to invest. You can also choose to invest your funds in multiple investment spheres such as shares, bonds, mutual funds, fixed deposits, etc.

2. Tax planning

Tax planning can be troublesome. The issues arising from it can be solved with the help of a little financial planning from your end. The importance of personal financial planning is highly reflected in solving tax-related problems where many financial strategies are adopted to reduce tax liabilities. You can invest in fixed deposits, PPF, NPS, etc., to maximise your tax savings.

3. Retirement planning

Retirement planning is one of the most important types of financial planning that allows you to retire without any financial stress. Retirement planning helps deal with all sorts of necessary expenses, such as medical bills, monthly costs, and other expenses you may incur to sustain your life after retirement. It assists you in estimating the amount of money you should have at the time of retirement and how you should invest your funds to make that possible.

4. Insurance planning

Insurance is an essential aspect that covers your losses during any emergency. Insurance planning is an integral part of financial planning that will provide you with an immediate sum of money when you need it. It helps you access and locate the type of insurance you may need and how much money you should spend to get that coverage.

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5. Budgeting

Budgeting is a way of formulating financial plans while critically assessing income and expenses. Budgeting mainly focuses on elevating your disposable income and minimising your loans, expenses, and debts.

6. Education funding planning

Making education funding plans has become an important aspect of financial planning as higher education costs have risen over the years. Financial planning for higher education ensures that you don’t need to compromise on your career objectives. Planning for education funding can assist you in saving a considerable sum of money for your own academic goals or your children’s education.

7. Estate planning

Estate planning is a type of financial planning that helps you give away your assets and belongings to your legal representatives or loved ones after your death. The best way to do so is by making a will that explicitly states how much of which asset belongs to whom. It is like a road map of the distribution of your assets and properties. Estate planning helps prevent future family conflicts and disagreements about property. 

8. Wealth creation

Financial planning is also beneficial for wealth creation through wise financial estimations. It keeps track of your earnings and expenses, which helps you reduce the extra costs and keep more funds for making investments. To generate long-term wealth, you can place your surplus money in a broad range of financial products— mutual funds, NPS, stocks, and so on. 

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Financial Planning: Goals and Objectives

Following are the major objectives of financial planning:

  • Assessing capital requirements: To determine the amount of capital required, you must consider many factors, for instance, the cost of fixed and current assets, promotional costs, and long-term planning strategies. Capital requirements are divided separately under the heads of long-term and short-term planning.
  • Estimating capital structure: Capital structure combines the various kinds and quantities of capital necessary for an organisation’s operation. This includes determining the debt-to-equity ratio for the immediate and distant future.
  • Setting up financial policies: The importance of financial planning extensively depends upon financial policies. These policies are concerned with cash control, providing loans, borrowings, etc.
  • Optimal utilisation of financial resources: Financial planning helps ensure that the limited financial resources are used optimally. To maximise the returns on investment, the scarcely available resources should be effectively and efficiently used while incurring the least expenses.
  • Better retirement period: Proper financial planning helps you to stay relieved at your time of retirement. You should start planning for retirement in the early stages of your life so that you don’t need to worry about medical expenses and other costs in old age. Investing in securities like mutual funds, bank fixed deposits, or share market can be a wise decision. This will enable you to build a retirement fund right now.

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Step-by-Step Guide to Successful Financial Planning

Let’s walk you through the key steps of financial planning that will enable you to plan your future finances in an effective manner. The following are the four key steps of successful financial planning:

Step1: Synchronise SMART Goals

This is the primary and most crucial step in financial planning as it helps you determine your objectives while being SMART. SMART goals consist of Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-bound goals. This means you have to define your goals in a certain way that can be specified and measured, which is possible to attain and relevant to your financial planning that you aim to achieve in a certain time period.

Writing down your goals in such a way allows you to rank the objectives in order of importance in your life. This helps you aim for realistic objectives and put abundant effort into achieving them.

Step 2: Keep Track of Your Budget

Make a road map of your budget to cut down on your expenses. The best way of doing so is to invest as much as possible to yield higher returns in the future and not make unnecessary expenses. Reducing your discretionary spending and using those funds to invest in profitable areas is better.

Step 3: Locate Areas for Investments

Choosing where to invest is the aim of this step. First, you must decide whether you want to invest in achieving long-term or short-term goals. For long-term goals, you may invest in equities, and for short-term objectives, it is best to invest in fixed deposits, debt funds, etc. Investing your funds in various securities is advisable rather than catering all your funds to one specific investment area.

A proper mix of asset allocation will reduce the risk factor in your investments. You need to assess the degree of risk you are willing to take and invest accordingly. Defining your risk profile also entails reviewing your financial personality and reaction to unfavourable circumstances.

Step 4: Track and Supervise

Tracking the progress of your investments is very important as it will help you realise the success of investment plans. Keep the investments that provide higher ROI while doing away with the underperforming investments. Balancing your asset allocation is the key, and timely tracking of the investment progress should not be abandoned. 

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Characteristics of Financial Plan

Here are the major elements of a financial plan: 

  • Properly define and set your financial objectives.
  • Save adequate funds for expense budgeting.
  • Analyse your risk tolerance.
  • Conduct proper asset allocation.
  • Prepare the most favourable investment plan for yourself.
  • Always think of a risk protection plan to avoid huge losses.
  • Constantly monitor and track your investment plans.

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Conclusion

Financial planning is all about managing your finances in the best possible way. It is a way of taking care of your future plans and attaining your financial objectives both for long-term and short-term purposes. It is also an integral aspect of your post-retirement life, where early financial planning saves you from worrying about later expenses. Learn about financial planning and start managing your finances to have a stress-free life in old age.

FAQs

What is the most important part of financial planning?

Establishing an emergency fund is one of the most critical parts of financial planning, which requires you to ensure that you are in charge of a fund that is at least six times your monthly salary.

Explain the importance of financial planning.

The importance of financial planning is far-reaching. It helps you take control of your income and expenses, make retirement plans, set aside funds for making investments, etc. Financial planning is essential for managing your money and attaining your financial objectives.

Why is retirement planning important?

The importance of retirement planning can be understood as it provides a stress-free retirement life to you and your family where you do not have to worry about your finances. Investing early in various retirement benefit plans and areas where you can earn a higher return on investment is wise.

Explain the importance of financial planning in business

The importance of financial planning in business can be seen as it helps draft growth policies and expansion programmes. It helps reduce uncertainty while considering the volatility in market trends.

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