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A new planning tool for advisers challenges clients to win a game
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I have a lot to learn before reaching financial independence, and the editorial elves thought it would be useful if I shared some of what I learn with you. Burrow and Gordo used to work for some of the big Wall Street brokerage firms, but they became disenchanted with that culture.
Haven't we all?! They believed people should have access to advice that isn't tainted or distorted based on the interests of the company or salesperson giving it. So in this review, I'll be discussing their book, which explains the system and their philosophy. In my next review, I'll talk more about my experience using the site and reveal my own personal FlexScore. Burrow and Gordo believe that one of the biggest reasons that people don't plan for the future is that it's really difficult to see how to get from here to there. Many people have a vague sense of whether they're doing well financially or not in the moment though many other people don't.
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However, even if you have a good idea of where you stand now, do you know whether you're actually on track to achieve longer-term goals? Do you know if your goals are even achievable? Take retirement as an example of a goal.
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Some people have all the money they'd need, but love their work and don't want to stop. Others have pinned all their hopes on leaving the daily grind behind at age 62, but haven't saved nearly enough to make that dream a reality. If you're in the former position, rock on!
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If you're in the latter position, you have three main options: 1 delay retirement, 2 continue working part-time to supplement your income, or 3 scale back your standard of living expectations to a level that is sustainable given your assets. FlexScore's aim is to give you all the information that you need to decide which option or combination of options is going to work best for you. Maybe you can't quit work at 62 and travel the world with your partner three months out of every year.
If you continued working full-time until age 65, transitioned into half-time work until you were 70, and downsized your house, you could afford to vacation one month out of the year. That's still pretty awesome! Your FlexScore is based on a point scale. That seems simple enough. And knowing that you can raise your FlexScore by modifying your goals to make them more realistic is also helpful. But is there a way to determine what a good score for a particular age range is, regardless of your goals?
There are several of examples based on clients Burrow and Gordo have worked with in the past. These examples explain what score people with different circumstances got, why, and what someone like them could do to improve their situation.
Review: FlexScore, The book and website
There's also a huge focus on trade-offs. What are you willing to sacrifice now so you can have what you want later? Or maybe what you want later will never be possible — how are you going to scale back your expectations to something that you can achieve? It's clear that their primary goal is to help people get a realistic understanding of their finances.
From there, they work to provide a transparent system where people can see exactly how an action they take today will pay off five, ten, or 30 years from now. I imagine that using the online tool in conjunction with the book would enable you to get the most out of both.
Thus, I'm antsy for the online tool to be fully functional so I can see if it lives up to its promise. What does that mean, exactly? They make 1, a perfect score of sorts, meaning if you score a 1,, you can probably retire today without a problem. Your initial score is determined in part based on your demographic information, your debts and assets, the insurance policies you have in place, and your goals for the future. Once you have an initial score, the tool creates an individual action plan for you. FlexScore assigns different values to different activities, and by completing those activities you can gain additional points.
Examples of activities you could do to gain points are:. Sometimes getting points is as easy as reading articles on the FlexScore website or watching their informational videos on a variety of topics. The tool will recommend that you watch specific videos or read certain articles based on your action plan.