You Can Start Your Own Financial Planning Club
Does the thought of planning for your retirement fill you with uncertainty? If so, you're not alone. Many of us feel adrift and unsure of what decisions to make. We're often unaware of the options available to us. When faced with this situation, like-minded individuals sometimes decide to combine their resources and form a financial planning club. The club members pool their money and decide how to invest it, usually in the stock market or mutual funds.
It doesn't require any special knowledge or expertise in the world of finance to form a financial planning club. All it requires is a desire to learn more about how to plan for the retirement you want. Finding members shouldn't be difficult. Talk with your family and friends; chances are they'd welcome some investment planning as much as you.
Before forming a financial planning club, it's a good idea to know the current outlook for your retirement finances. An excellent tool is the retirement calculator available for download for free by clicking on the red box. Using clear charts and graphs, it will show you projections of your financial investments, even taking into account market changes and inflation rates. You will also be given the opportunity to speak with a qualified retirement planning consultant.
Your club should be neither too small nor too large. You should have at least six or seven members so that your group contribution is enough to allow for investment diversity, but you'll probably want no more than 20 members. Larger groups tend to have more difficulty in reaching a consensus on decisions.
Once you've formed a club, you should have an initial meeting to decide on the basic investment goals, savings philosophy and to set the rules for how your financial planning club will be run. The members of the club need to be in agreement about what level of investment risk will be taken, as well as the amount of investment each member will make.
The benefit of the club lies not only in reaping the gains from your investments but also in gaining knowledge about investment opportunities and techniques. At each regular meeting, one or two members will share information they've learned about a specific stock, mutual fund or other form of investment. Each member can pass along any tips and insight they've received from other sources.
There are other considerations when forming a financial planning club. Clubs are generally set up either as partnerships or as corporations. The partnership is the more popular of these two options. There are also tax issues to consider. The way the club is structured determines whether only the individual members are responsible for taxes on their portion of earnings or whether the club is also required to pay taxes. Because of these legal and tax ramifications, most clubs find it beneficial to get input from a planning consultant.
If you like the idea of getting input from your family and friends on investment options, then forming a financial planning club is worth exploring. Determine your current projected retirement income (and clicking on the blue button for the free download is a great way to do that), gather your group, and begin learning about the most profitable ways to invest for your future.