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Face Your Financial Fears

Businesswomen Balancing Over MoneyThis week many people are either finding ways to frighten each other or looking forward to being frightened because imagined frights are a lot more fun than the real thing. For its “Fear of Financial Planning Consumer Study,” Harris Interactive surveyed 783 adults who were at least 18 and who have at least $100,000 in investable assets.

To start, we’ll tell you some of the results that sound scary to a financial planner: 38% of the people surveyed said they do not intend to create financial plan and 32% said they plan to create a financial plan…within the next 5 years. Even scarier: people over 55 were more likely to say they weren’t going to create a financial plan.

The percentage of people not interested in creating a financial plan is interesting in light of the financial fears these same respondents expressed. These are not people who feel as if they never have to worry. They have some legitimate concerns; we’ve listed the top two concerns uncovered by the survey, by age group:

Age Group                                 Top Fears

Retirees                                        Another financial crisis, Unmanageable healthcare costs

Pre-Retirees                                Another financial crisis, Unmanageable healthcare costs

Generation X                              Another financial crisis, Savings lasting through retirement

Generation Y/Millennials        Financing children’s education, Another financial crisis

Nearly a third of respondents said they don’t have a financial plan because the “just haven’t gotten around to it yet” and a fifth said they don’t need one. This is unfortunate because having a financial plan in place can be a great roadmap to guide you towards a comfortable retirement. And when it comes to financial planning and investing, time matters, so the sooner you start to find ways to reduce debt and invest your money, the better off you’ll be.  This does not mean, however, that if you’re over 55, you should just forget about financial planning because you still have retirement and estate planning to consider and could benefit from the expertise of a Fee-Only financial planner just as much as someone younger.

Don’t hide; face your financial fears.