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Our Financial Planning Process

Personal Financial Planning in Maryland, Northern VA & Washington, D.C.

Our personal financial planning process is designed to let us get to know each other. We believe the success of a financial plan is built on a foundation of trust between a client and their financial advisor. That’s why we strive to learn everything about your current financial situation, your financial goals, and even some things you may not think are relevant but can greatly influence how you make financial decisions—such as your beliefs, attitudes, and values. Below we’ve outlined the structure of our financial planning process.

Ready to get your financial affairs in order? Contact a financial advisor at Ferguson-Johnson Wealth Management today.
Financial Planning Process Steps from Discovery to Review and Checkups

Step One: Discovery Phase

This is the first phase of the financial planning process. Simply put, we ask you a lot of questions to understand if we are a good fit for you and if you are a good fit for us. We believe the client-advisor relationship is a key building block in the foundation of forming a financial plan and absolutely necessary for the successful implementation of that plan.

Assuming we’re the right financial planning firm for you, we’ll need to understand what’s important to you—your goals, values, dreams, and challenges. Financial planning is much more than the math equation that online calculators or some workplace retirement plan advisors make it out to be. Real financial planning is the art of balancing many competing interests to create a strategy that helps you achieve your goals and, most importantly, helps you live a fuller and happier life. In order to truly accomplish this, we need to understand you inside and out.

Step Two: Creation of Your Financial Plan

We take all the things we’ve learned about you from discovery and begin to tailor a financial plan designed to address your unique situation. Depending on what you’re trying to accomplish this may include a number of features, such as a retirement plan, budget, debt reduction strategies, and portfolio management strategies.

Step Three: Review of Your Financial Plan

The initial financial plan is really just a draft. The key step is our opportunity to present our findings and have an honest discussion with you about what this plan really means in the context of your everyday life. We discuss what you’re doing right, behaviors that might need adjustment, and the trade-offs you can make to get into a better financial position.

Step Four: Execution

Now your plan goes into action. We help you open accounts, allocate assets, coordinate with other professionals in your life, and point you in the right direction so that our recommendations can become a reality.

Step Five: Monitoring

It’s easy for life to happen causing the best of plans sometimes to get lost in the shuffle. We’re here to hold you accountable. We believe a financial plan is so much more than a checklist of things to do. We believe it’s our expertise in your corner months and years later that brings your financial plan together.

Step Six: Ongoing, Periodic Checkups

As you journey through life, major things can change. You could get a job, lose a job, gain a family member, or even, sadly, lose a family member. These events can dramatically change your financial goals and, therefore, require alterations in your financial plan. We are here to help you pivot and navigate these changes. The plans that made sense a few years ago might have to be adjusted now or in the future; the financial planning process begins anew.

Financial Planning in the Washington, D.C. Area

Are you ready to embark on the financial planning journey? Our team of expert financial advisors would love to help. Call Ferguson-Johnson Wealth Management at 301-284-8786 or contact us online today to get started with your free consultation.