4 Stories, 1 Goal – Introducing Laura: Financial Advisor
As part of our wider 4 Stories, 1 Goal series, we’re introducing some of the key guests helping us get people thinking about investing for later life. 4 Stories, 1 Goal is a free series designed to encourage people to consider their financial future – with insights from property investors and industry experts. You can get your free 4 Stories, 1 Goal series here.
At the heart of 4 Stories, 1 Goal is the people. Each of our guests represents a different aspect of the investment journey, from industry experts that work alongside investors to property investors themselves.
We asked each guest to give us their story – from the first investment to the present day and beyond. We asked them why they started, obstacles they had to overcome and how they measure success. All investors are different and our guests are no exception – everyone considers an investment for different reasons and while goals can be similar, strategies that work for one won’t always work for the other.
Introducing Laura Thursfield
Laura is an FCA-authorised financial planner with Mazars, providing independent financial advice to help individuals achieve their goals and objectives. She is responsible for Midlands-based clients worth £57 million in assets under management, with experience in providing advice for a range of private clients from senior partners, directors and business owners to independent wealthy individuals.
Laura provides holistic financial advice, facilitated through the use of cash flow modelling and her advice covers areas such as pensions, investments, income tax strategy, pensions and estate planning. She was also named Birmingham Young Professional of the Year (BYPY) in 2018, as well as winning the Rising Star award at the Women in Financial Advice Awards 2018.
As a financial advisor, Laura has seen many weird and wonderful investments from clients and has a wealth of experience in helping them realise their goals, which made her an ideal candidate for ‘4 Stories, 1 Goal.’ Below she shares her experiences with a few key answers from the wider interview.
What are the common catalysts that make people think about their financial future?
“There tend to be two types of catalysts that get people to start their investment journey. The first one is a market event or something that’s happening in the economy that gets people talking and gets people thinking about what they’re doing with their financial circumstances.
The other tends to be something that’s happened in their life, whether that’s a birth, a death, a marriage or a divorce, it’s something that gets them to reassess their financial circumstances and look at what they’re doing going forward.”
Where would you advise people to start?
“The starting point during an investment journey is ‘where are you now?’ Before I can tell someone what the optimum investment is, we need to take a look what they’ve currently got and make sure that investment fits into their circumstances now and then what their objectives are in five or ten years time. The starting point is what do you have now, the second point is where do you want to get to and then my job is to bring the two together with a recommendation.”
What advice would you give to investors?
“My one piece of advice to anyone looking to invest is to talk about it first. You need to look at this investment decision, see where it fits in terms of what you have now, see where it fits in where you want to be in terms of longer-term goals and to make sure that it marries up. You don’t want to put all of your eggs into one basket and you want to make sure that your financial plan is flexible enough to meet the changing demands on your time.”
Do your investors have goals?
“People don’t tend to have specific goals in mind and if they do they tend to be unrealistic. What my job is to do is to talk to people about what they want to do in five years time, ten years time and 25 years time and then we start to break it down into more reasonable objectives rather than wider lifetime goals.
“Unrealistic goals tend to be when they have inflated views of the income that their asset base can produce once they step away from work. A more realistic goal is when we look at the lifestyle they want and break it down into whats the amount of money you need and what’s the lifestyle you want and marry the two together. We build a more realistic picture of what life can look like during retirement.
“Clients objectives and goals change all the time as life happens and it’s important that any financial plan or investment plan that’s put in place is flexible because you can’t plan for everything and it’s really important that your wider financial circumstances are flexible to meet those changing goals and objectives.”
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