DIY Financial Planning: Yay or Nay? (Part 2)

Last week, I talked about DIY Financial Planning and Hiring a Professional, Fee-only Financial Planner (not a salesperson!). Let me tell you that I started out with DIY financial planning, but I still ended up getting into the financial world, learning and getting certifications wherein I ended up a fee-only financial planner.

With the current economic situation of our country and the world, financial planning and investing are important as ever.

Reality and Adulting Pressures

Life happens. You may want to “BUILD” your dream home, but you can’t since you are not an Architect or a Civil Engineer, so you buy pre-designed and built homes in subdivisions or condominiums. You want to do a renovation, but once again, you are no plumber, electrician or carpenter; so you hire a contract to do the project. Should you do-it-yourself? Yes, it may take longer, cost more perhaps. When you are sick, you can choose to go to a doctor, or type your symptoms over the internet. Hire a lawyer to take care of your legal woes or read law books yourself.

Should you, or maybe not? The answer is in your hands.

Add to that the life pressures that happen along the way such as: taking care of children, life at work, extended family, lifestyle choices, technological trends, life transitions, calamities, death, disability, education, life events (wedding, birthday parties, etc..), taxes, market volatility, economic factors and lifestyle expenses; the more your income grows, the more responsibilities and these pressures way down on you.

With that, there are definitely times in your life when at least consulting with a financial planning firm is worth your while.

Key areas that affect your wealth

You need to view your entire financial situation in a holistic manner:

- Investment management

- Family Risk (and Insurance) management

- Cash Flow and Debt management

- Legacy and Estate planning

- Retirement planning

- Education planning (Children, your own)

- Business Planning (employee benefits, taxation,..etc..)

- Special needs planning

There is not enough space for me to discuss this here further, so at least this is for awareness purposes.

In conclusion, DIY financial planning may be able to address certain aspects depending on the individual’s experience, expertise and inclination. However, you may find that you might excel in a few areas but would have gaps in others.

In fact, a DIY financial plan may even create a false sense of comfort and security, preventing one from reviewing one’s financial needs and requirements that may change from time to time.

A Fee-only financial planner or a financial planning firm can enable one to be in a better position for more options in terms of investment and money management, risk assessment and control that captures one’s financial goals. Now, even if you have the help of financial planner, you are still the ultimate decision maker. Hiring a professional or a firm does not mean outsourcing your financial planning but rather, working hand in hand together.

Whichever path you choose, professional or do-it-yourself, you do need to take charge of your personal finances. A little time spent now would save you more time (and pain) in the end.


The writer is an RFP® - registered financial planner of RFP PH, Licensed Real Estate Broker and Director of CERTA, Inc., a family estate planning and investment advisory firm. To know more, please visit
Originally Published in Philstar - The Freeman Newspaper last October 04, 2016.
DIY Financial Planning: Yay or Nay? (Part 2) DIY Financial Planning: Yay or Nay? (Part 2) Reviewed by Vernon Joseph Go on Monday, October 24, 2016 Rating: 5

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