Financial planning, like space exploration, needs careful management after success

Space exploration is pushing new boundaries and more than six decades after Yuri Gagarin became the first man in space, historic launches and exciting milestones continue to capture public imagination. Yet, like financial planning, the period after reaching a goal requires just as much attention as those that garner coverage.

On 23 August 2023, India celebrated its third lunar exploration mission as Chandrayaan-3’s Vikram Lander successfully reached the south pole of the moon. It’s the first time the feat has ever been accomplished, and just weeks before a Russian attempt failed.

While messages of congratulations have rightly flooded in, there’s still plenty of work to do.

Space agencies have previously detected frozen water in the south pole craters, but it’s never been verified. Now, there’s an opportunity to learn more about the origins of our own oceans and past lunar volcanoes. If water is present, it could even be used as a source of oxygen, fuel and water in future missions.

The rover, named Pragyaan, is expected to last for 14 days and will remain on the moon. Returning rovers, equipment, and astronauts safely to Earth is just as challenging as reaching the destination.

The period after reaching a milestone can be just as challenging

Successfully launching a spacecraft is one thing, but bringing it safely back to Earth is another challenge.

Spacecraft re-entry is difficult for numerous reasons, including the effects of gravity and drag. Scientists must consider how the spacecraft can leave orbit, descend through the atmosphere safely, and then land. So, while exciting launches grab attention, just as much work goes into preparing for the period after the milestone event.

Similarly, while you may celebrate reaching a financial goal, your decisions after could be just as important.

When you’re working towards something, you’ll often have a clear plan to achieve it. For financial goals, it could be contributing a certain amount each month to your pension or investment portfolio.

With a plan that outlines the steps you need to take it can be easier to focus on your goal and feel confident.

Once you reach your goal, a plan is still important, but you may need a very different strategy and approach.

Take retirement as an example. You may have saved diligently during your career to retire with enough assets to be financially comfortable and enjoy the next chapter of your life. While you have the assets to live the retirement you want, without a plan, your goals could still go awry.

Retirees may face two challenges that financial planning could help.

1. Managing assets to ensure they last for the rest of your life

Building up assets to secure your retirement can be challenging, and so can managing how to use assets once you stop working.

As you’ll often be responsible for creating an income from your pension, as well as deciding how to use other assets, you might need to consider how to manage withdrawals to ensure you don’t spend too much too soon.

You may also need to weigh up other areas that could affect your wealth, such as investment returns, inflation, or tax liability.

To overcome these new challenges, you might benefit from a strategy that looks very different from the one that was appropriate before you retired. Financial planning could help you manage this switch so the years after your retirement date benefit from a plan that still suits you.

2. Changing your mindset

It’s not just your financial strategy that might need to change when you retire, but your attitude to money too.

After decades of putting money carefully to one side, it can be difficult to start depleting some of the assets you’ve built up. You might even be afraid to spend some of the money – what would happen if you faced a financial shock? Or could you run out during your lifetime?

These concerns in retirement are normal, but they could mean you miss out on experiences you’ve been looking forward to despite working hard to secure them. Working with a professional to understand your finances and the long-term effects of your decisions could ease some of the anxiety you may feel when you retire.

We could help you create a plan that goes beyond goals

Your aspirations are an incredibly important part of a financial plan, but so is the period that comes after them.

Working with a financial planner could help you create a plan that incorporates goals and goes beyond these milestones to build long-term security.

While space travel might not be in our area of expertise, we could provide support when you’re working towards goals that are just as important to you, whether you want to retire early, provide security for your family, or launch a business.

Please get in touch to talk to one of our team or arrange a meeting.

Please note:

This blog is for general information only and does not constitute advice. The information is aimed at retail clients only.

A pension is a long-term investment not normally accessible until 55 (57 from April 2028). The fund value may fluctuate and can go down, which would have an impact on the level of pension benefits available. Your pension income could also be affected by the interest rates at the time you take your benefits.

The tax implications of pension withdrawals will be based on your individual circumstances, tax legislation and regulation, which are subject to change in the future.