Strategic Financial Advice

At Financial Spectrum, our approach to financial advice is to take a holistic view of your life – your career aspirations, family plans, lifestyle and retirement goals – and to combine your personal objectives with our research and expertise to craft a plan tailored to your financial aspirations. We've summarised your financial planning journey with Financial Spectrum below.

Taking a Holistic View

Your relationship with Financial Spectrum begins by us taking the time to understand you – from your career to your family, where you like to holiday and what your vision is for the next 5, 10 or 20 years. We take the time to listen and ask questions that you may not have already considered. That helps us to explore a full range of different scenarios for you, and helps us to plan strategically for a strong, realistic financial future. We use bespoke long-term planning tools and calculators to explore and model difference scenarios and help you to understand how different decisions and changes in direction can impact or improve your financial future. It’s not just about investing, it’s about life decisions and the effect that they will have on you and your family. Continue reading to learn more about the first 9 steps in your financial planning journey.

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At Financial Spectrum we will talk with you over the phone first, giving you an overview of our process and approach, and arranging time to have an initial meeting with you. Your initial meeting is complimentary and obligation-free, and generally takes one hour. We generally meet face-to-face in our Sydney CBD, Balmain or Bondi offices, however we also regularly conduct meetings via Skype or video conference if you prefer.
Prior to your first meeting, we’ll send you out a questionnaire. We use the questionnaire to help us begin to get to know you and understand your individual circumstances. It will help us to know which areas to explore further in the face-to-face meeting so that we can build a thorough understanding of your circumstances and aspirations.
At the first meeting we’ll gain an overview of your current financial situation, any particular challenges you are facing, as well as starting to build a picture of both your financial and life goals. After the first meeting, we will use this information to inform a comprehensive and rigorous research and scenario modelling process that enables us to begin to build a plan tailored to your needs.
Based on the information you have provided to us in our previous meeting and any further information, we will map out what we feel is your best foot forward. We want to share with your our visions and ideas about your future to help you feel comfortable that we truly understanding your situation and your desires for the future. Should you agree that we’re heading in the right direction, we’ll present you with our fee agreement to discuss any costs with you. Our agreements are very straight forward and everything is agreed to at the start so there are no surprises coming up.
Prior to your Strategy meeting, we will map out several broad level strategic plans using bespoke long-term planning calculators and proprietary research and planning tools. We then meet with you to present the various strategies and talk you through the ideas and structures we are proposing to help drive you towards your future financial and lifestyle goals. It is at this stage that we work with you to explore multiple scenarios to help you understand how different decisions and changes in direction can impact or improve your financial future. Our priority is ensuring that you understand the concepts we are discussing, and feel comfortable that they are right for you.
We commit to each and every client that they will get the plan that they want. We don’t limit the number of reworks that it takes to get your strategy just right. As we progress through your strategy refining it, you’ll start to develop an intimate understanding of the long term effects of certain decisions. You’ll have the opportunity to think about the various ideas to weigh up your options and provide us with feedback. This process can take one or several meetings depending on the complexity of your situation as well as your ability to make decisions. Don’t worry, we’re very patient and will always ensure that we take the time to thoroughly explain everything to you.
Once you are comfortable with the strategic financial plan, and have made any changes or discussed any alternatives with us, we will prepare a more comprehensive version of your plan, called a Statement of Advice. It will contain advice, detailed recommendations and a step-by-step explanation of how you can improve your financial situation and how we can assist in the implementation of your financial plan. We will present this detailed plan to you in a third, face-to-face meeting so that you have the option to clarify anything you are unsure of and ensure you a confident moving forward with your plan.
The implementation of each plan is unique. Your plan may involve budgeting and debt reduction, sourcing insurances, implementing estate planning, investing in managed funds, exploring options in property and a range of other tactics suited to your specific lifestyle aspirations. We partner with you throughout the journey to help you implement your plan efficiently and accurately, and answer any questions you have throughout the process. Our team will even go as far as contacting financial institutions to obtain account statements and other paperwork on your behalf (and with your permission) so that you have the confidence that things will keep moving forward even if you are presented with timing challenges like increased workloads or new additions to your family.
Once you plan is in place, we are committed to providing continued expert guidance and support. We’re focussed on making sure our advice remains current and relevant, and will update your plans according to any changes in your financial situation or goals. Our team is also focussed on delivering best practice and up-to-date financial advice, and we can work with you through legislation and tax changes to make sure your financial aspirations are not impacted. Learn more about ongoing financial planning reviews here.

Strategic Financial Advice

At Financial Spectrum, our approach to financial advice is to take a holistic view of your life – your career aspirations, family plans, lifestyle and retirement goals – and to combine your personal objectives with our research and expertise to craft a plan tailored to your financial aspirations.

Taking a Holistic View

Your relationship with Financial Spectrum begins by us taking the time to understand you – from your career to your family, where you like to holiday and what your vision is for the next 5, 10 or 20 years. We take the time to listen and ask questions that you may not have already considered. That helps us to explore a full range of different scenarios for you, and helps us to plan strategically for a strong, realistic financial future. We use bespoke long-term planning tools and calculators to explore and model difference scenarios and help you to understand how different decisions and changes in direction can impact or improve your financial future. It’s not just about investing, it’s about life decisions and the effect that they will have on you and your family.

Read more
1 Introduction
Discussing your needs over the phone
At Financial Spectrum we will talk with you over the phone first, giving you an overview of our process and approach, and arranging time to have an initial meeting with you. Your initial meeting is complimentary and obligation-free, and generally takes one hour. We generally meet face-to-face in our Sydney CBD, Balmain or Bondi offices, however we also regularly conduct meetings via Skype or video conference if you prefer.
2 Getting to know you
An introductory questionnaire
Prior to your first meeting, we’ll send you out a questionnaire. We use the questionnaire to help us begin to get to know you and understand your individual circumstances. It will help us to know which areas to explore further in the face-to-face meeting so that we can build a thorough understanding of your circumstances and aspirations.
3 First meeting
Understanding your goals
At the first meeting we’ll gain an overview of your current financial situation, any particular challenges you are facing, as well as starting to build a picture of both your financial and life goals. After the first meeting, we will use this information to inform a comprehensive and rigorous research and scenario modelling process that enables us to begin to build a plan tailored to your needs.
4 Second meeting
Establishing your relationship
Based on the information you have provided to us in our previous meeting and any further information, we will map out what we feel is your best foot forward. We want to share with your our visions and ideas about your future to help you feel comfortable that we truly understanding your situation and your desires for the future. Should you agree that we’re heading in the right direction, we’ll present you with our fee agreement to discuss any costs with you. Our agreements are very straight forward and everything is agreed to at the start so there are no surprises coming up.
5 Strategy meeting
Your initial strategy
Prior to your Strategy meeting, we will map out several broad level strategic plans using bespoke long-term planning calculators and proprietary research and planning tools. We then meet with you to present the various strategies and talk you through the ideas and structures we are proposing to help drive you towards your future financial and lifestyle goals. It is at this stage that we work with you to explore multiple scenarios to help you understand how different decisions and changes in direction can impact or improve your financial future. Our priority is ensuring that you understand the concepts we are discussing, and feel comfortable that they are right for you.
6 Strategy refinement meeting
Getting it right
We commit to each and every client that they will get the plan that they want. We don’t limit the number of reworks that it takes to get your strategy just right. As we progress through your strategy refining it, you’ll start to develop an intimate understanding of the long term effects of certain decisions. You’ll have the opportunity to think about the various ideas to weigh up your options and provide us with feedback. This process can take one or several meetings depending on the complexity of your situation as well as your ability to make decisions. Don’t worry, we’re very patient and will always ensure that we take the time to thoroughly explain everything to you.
7 A detailed plan
Your Statement of Advice
Once you are comfortable with the strategic financial plan, and have made any changes or discussed any alternatives with us, we will prepare a more comprehensive version of your plan, called a Statement of Advice. It will contain advice, detailed recommendations and a step-by-step explanation of how you can improve your financial situation and how we can assist in the implementation of your financial plan. We will present this detailed plan to you in a third, face-to-face meeting so that you have the option to clarify anything you are unsure of and ensure you a confident moving forward with your plan.
8 Delivering your plan
Your partner on the journey
The implementation of each plan is unique. Your plan may involve budgeting and debt reduction, sourcing insurances, implementing estate planning, investing in managed funds, exploring options in property and a range of other tactics suited to your specific lifestyle aspirations. We partner with you throughout the journey to help you implement your plan efficiently and accurately, and answer any questions you have throughout the process. Our team will even go as far as contacting financial institutions to obtain account statements and other paperwork on your behalf (and with your permission) so that you have the confidence that things will keep moving forward even if you are presented with timing challenges like increased workloads or new additions to your family.
9 Ongoing Support
Always in touch
Once you plan is in place, we are committed to providing continued expert guidance and support. We’re focussed on making sure our advice remains current and relevant, and will update your plans according to any changes in your financial situation or goals. Our team is also focussed on delivering best practice and up-to-date financial advice, and we can work with you through legislation and tax changes to make sure your financial aspirations are not impacted. Learn more about ongoing financial planning reviews here.

Ongoing Financial Planning Reviews

As part of our commitment to providing continued best-practice expertise and support, we conduct regular reviews of your financial plan so that we can ensure your plan remains relevant to your specific circumstances over time.

Not only are we genuinely interested in changes in your life, potential career advancements or new additions to your family – but we’re passionate about the challenge of finding new opportunities for you as your circumstances change.  You will have the security of having someone by your side who understands your finances as well (or even better) than you do to help you make the right decision at the right time.  We operate an open door policy and encourage our clients to include us on any decision or situation that they want assistance with.

Our straightforward and disciplined review process addresses:

  • your financial planning needs and objectives;
  • your income and expenditure;
  • your family situation and health;
  • your life insurance needs;
  • deductible and non-deductible debt;
  • the economic environment;
  • investment and superannuation portfolio performance;
  • your taxation position and any relevant changes in the current tax law;
  • any opportunities to reduce your tax payable;
  • social security issues; and
  • new investment opportunities.

In essence, we want to give you the confidence that you are in control of your financial security and well on the way to achieving both your financial and lifestyle goals as efficiently and effectively as possible.


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Financial Planning Fees

At Financial Spectrum we’re committed to delivering transparent, fee for service advice. That means that our clients pay us for the time and advice we provide. We don’t receive any commissions, which gives our clients the confidence that they are receiving objective advice. Our model is essential for protecting our clients from conflicts of interest and ensures our clients know that we are purely focused on helping them achieve their financial aspirations. Further, we don’t charge any Asset Based Fees which means there is no link between what you invest and what you pay. You pay for what you use. Period.

How much does a financial plan cost?

Each plan that we create is based on a deep understanding of your personal circumstances, and comprehensive and rigorous research and scenario modelling. Your plan will be completely tailored to your personal circumstances, and the cost of your plan will be dependent on factors such as:

1 Time
Our comprehensive process includes multiple face-to-face meetings, in addition to the time taken by the planner and our support team to research, model and develop your plan. This may also include things like liaising with your accountant or lawyer, obtaining your financial records, detailed product comparisons to identify the most suitable products for you, financial forecasting and the preparation of the plan.
2 Level of expertise
At Financial Spectrum our team are qualified financial advice professionals with a focus on continuous professional development to ensure we are able to offer best practice advice at all times. With that in mind, some financial plans may be more complex and require a more senior planner, or require professional advice from someone with a specific area of expertise, such as asset protection or tax minimisation.
3 Complexity
Some clients have very simple financial affairs, while others may have multiple investment properties, family trusts and other more complex investment requirements. The level of complexity of your circumstances will have an impact on the time required to develop your plan.

How can I pay for my plan?

At Financial Spectrum we understand that the cost of a financial plan is a significant investment. As part of our commitment to ensuring that you are able to get the right financial advice to help you meet your financial and lifestyle aspirations, we offer two payment options:

1 Upfront payment
Using this option, you will be presented with progress invoices for work completed throughout the development of your financial plan. At the end of the development of your plan, you will have no more to pay, but will have the option of selecting an ongoing service contract to suit your individual needs and goals.
2 Installments
We also offer the option of paying for your financial plan in regular monthly installments over a period of one year. This can help make the cost of getting a financial plan more accessible. Additional fees may apply should you select this option.
3 Superannuation
In limited circumstances, you may be able to deduct our fee from your superannuation. This can help with cash flow but has more complex rules attached to it. This is not suitable in all circumstances and you should discuss this with your adviser.

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