What We Do
Comprehensive Financial Planning
Comprehensive financial planning involves every aspect of your financial life, and more. It is based on the premise that you get the most value out of your money by first knowing what purpose your money is intended.
Our work is based on the principals of comprehensive financial planning. While we specialise in researching, recommending and managing our clients’ investments, our advice is always based first and foremost on learning about what you need your money to do for you. Year-on-year investment returns are certainly important, but we consider achieving your overall lifestyle objectives the ultimate benchmark for success. It is from that philosophy that we work with you to develop a realistic personalised financial plan and investment strategy, not merely a cookie cutter or institutionalised template based on a handful of generic investor profiles.
My role in my clients’ financial lives is alot like being their personal Chief Financial Officer. We work together in much the same way as a CEO would work with their company’s CFO, with me working to their specific targets and reporting directly to them to ensure things stay on track.
The basis for all client work done at Horizons Investments is a clients’ Personal Financial Plan — a written document that is prepared especially for you after we gather information about the important aspects of your financial affairs. Each plan is comprehensive and individualised, but will likely include in plain english:
- Your current situation, including a listing of what you own (assets) and what you owe (liabilities).
- A summary of your short, medium and long term objectives.
- A summary of any special considerations or circumstances that impact your financial life — this might be the need to care long term for an elderly parent, an adult child or expectation of an inheritance that may arise down the road.
- Your need for current income, and any need for an upcoming, known “one-off” like replacing your car or repairing a roof.
- An analysis of your financial position, and an identification of those aspects that need particular attention.
- A recommended investment portfolio catered to your needs.
- A review of your current tax position, and recommendations (if any) on how investments may be better placed to minimise your tax liability.
- A review of your current estate plan, including any recommendations to ensure your intentions are sufficiently recorded.
A good financial plan is a dynamic and flexible plan. The real work we do on behalf of our clients begins once we’ve agreed to the plan’s focus and direction, discussed its recommendations and implemented changes — investing your capital, working if necessary with your accountant and/or lawyer or setting up an auto payment for regular savings. From there, the work for us lies in keeping in regular contact with you, on-going investment management (i.e., letting you know when a change should be made) and reviewing progress.
Investment Advice & Portfolio Management
The financial engine for most financial plans is a client’s investment portfolio. At Horizons Investments we provide advice and personalised investment recommendations, taking into account your particular circumstances, goals and resources. The two key issues we’ll discuss with you thoroughly before developing a investment recommendations are around your needs, and your ability and willingness to take on investment risk.
- What are your needs? Are you in retirement, or nearing retirement? Are you looking for a regular and reliable income from your investments. For pre-retirees, how long do you have until you retire?
- What are your attitudes about investment risk? Do your expectations on investment returns match your investment timeframe? Are you expecting too much for taking on too little risk? Despite your willingness to take on investment risk, do your circumstances warrant taking on a particular level of risk?
What sets us apart from many financial advisers is our commitment to be independent both around the investments we recommend, and in our approach. We:
- have no contractual ties with large institutional fund managers;
- are fee-only and do not accept rebates, commission or brokerage (these are rebated if received to you);
- use both our own research and research purchased from industry and investment asset specialists; and
- construct, manage and monitor only well-diversified investment portfolios (across fund managers, companies and asset classes)
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