The Importance Of Holistic Wealth Planning
By John Halterman
When it comes to your wealth strategy, it’s easy to forget that your end goals are more than just a number. In fact, the number is just the benchmark you’ve determined that you think will allow you to live the life you want. In truth, that benchmark may indeed be the number you need to reach.
But when we get too caught up in the numbers alone, it’s like we’re putting on blinders. If you isolate specific aspects of your wealth strategy, you risk sacrificing creative opportunities to help you reach your goals, no matter what may be happening with a single aspect of your strategy.
Every individual’s financial picture is different, so holistic wealth planning is by no means a one-size-fits-all approach. Holistic wealth planning requires a trusted relationship with a dedicated strategist who takes the time to understand your whole financial picture, so I would never make recommendations to individuals with whom I haven’t spent this time.
Nevertheless, I strongly believe holistic wealth planning is the best way to reach your goals.
What Is Holistic Wealth Planning?
Holistic wealth planning is a comprehensive approach to managing your wealth. It combines investment management and financial advice from a goals-based standpoint, rather than a numbers-based standpoint.
The approach does not focus singly on investments, or tax planning, or insurance products. It looks at all of these things (plus much more) and how they work together to reach a future vision based on your values. When you practice holistic wealth planning, your wealth advisor will not begin the process with questions about how much money you want to retire with or what kind of returns you need on investments. Instead, a holistic wealth advisor will ask you questions like:
What are your top 5 values in your life?
How do you live out those values, or how do you hope to live out those values?
What does your ideal life look like in retirement?
How would you like to handle unexpected events in your life?
The answers to these questions are what helps us practice true values- and goals-based wealth strategies. These answers help us determine the number you need to achieve that vision, not the other way around. And knowing these values helps you adjust your strategy according to changing life circumstances—because change is inevitable.
Why Holistic Wealth Planning?
If change is inevitable, then it hardly seems feasible to create a wealth strategy dependent on a specific set of circumstances for the vision to be achieved. Holistic wealth planning anticipates change. At Beacon Wealth Management, we focus on 4 cornerstones of a holistic wealth strategy:
Retirement and investment advice
Tax reduction strategies
Estate and legacy planning
Holistic wealth planning can also help you manage a divorce, the loss of a spouse, self-employment and business decisions, medical emergencies, an unexpected inheritance or windfall, or even an unexpected job loss. Ultimately, any aspect of your financial life is included in holistic wealth planning.
What’s more, recent research is showing that holistic wealth planning actually results in greater average annual returns than wealth planning done in isolation. A study by researchers at Morningstar found that on average, individuals practicing holistic wealth planning may expect to see 1.5% greater annual average returns than individuals not practicing holistic planning. (1)
Partner With A Holistic Wealth Management Team
John Halterman, best-selling author and nationally published blogger has been featured as a financial guest expert on the TV shows of self-help gurus Brian Tracy and Jack Canfield, author of Chicken Soup for the Soul. He has appeared on ABC, FOX, BRAVO, NBC, CBS, and A&E. John is the expert host of the weekly WDTV News 5 segment, “Solutions 4 Financial Independence.”
As an authority on wealth management, he has been invited by hundreds of institutions such as universities, federal agencies, professional associations, and large energy and utility corporations to be a guest speaker and educational event host. Event topics include maximizing your retirement, managing down market investment risk, how to reduce your tax burden, and transferring your family wealth in the most tax advantageous way.
John is the founder and owner of Beacon Wealth Management, specializing in helping entrepreneurs, professional practitioners, and retirees overcome the 4 major challenges facing successful families. He is a warm communicator with a passion for helping people transform their financial futures. John understands the multifaceted set of financial worries people face as they become more successful and enter the retirement red zone. He empathizes personally with each client and delivers a collaborative client experience that empowers people to reach their life goals.
With more than two decades of experience, John’s professional credentials include:
Certified Wealth Strategist (CWS)
Accredited Investment Fiduciary® (AIF®)
Certified Estate Planner™ (CEP®)
Chartered Federal Employee Benefits Consultant℠ (ChFEBC℠)
Professional Plan Consultant® (PPC®)
Registered Financial Consultant (RFC)
Past member of Ed Slott’s Master Elite IRA Study Group
A native of Weston, West Virginia, John served in the United States Air Force prior to becoming a Wealth Advisor. Today, he resides with his family in Bridgeport, West Virginia. He and his wife, Lisa, have been married since 2005 and have three amazing children. A family-loving man, he enjoys giving back to his community, coaching youth sports, landscaping and architectural design, WV Athletics, and is an outdoor and racquetball playing enthusiast.