Category Archives: Financial Planning

Do you need life insurance?

It’s not something we like to think about. And definitely not something we like to talk about. What would happen if suddenly your life doesn’t go as planned? Something unexpected happens. This is why you need life insurance.

What is life insurance?

Life insurance is designed to pay out an amount of money to your dependents providing some financial security to them in the event of your death. It’s difficult to think about your untimely death but the financial impact on your loved ones could be huge. Therefore it’s important to plan to protect them.

How much life cover do I need?

How much life insurance cover you need depends on your circumstances. Generally, if you have a young family, you will need to provide a larger lump sum than if your children are older. That is because the benefit has to last longer.

You will need to consider having enough insurance to:

  • cover your family’s income needs, for as long as they need the income
  • pay off your mortgage and any other loans
  • cover costs that might arise when your children are older, for example school or college fees

There are several ways you can protect a family and it can be daunting trying to work out how much cover is required and for how long.

At Coleman Financial Planning we use a simple but robust formula to calculate what level and type of cover is specific to your family.

Get in touch with us and we can tailor a solution that is flexible and unique to your family’s needs.




NOW is the time to start your Smart Financial Habits

A recent study by EY suggested that the Covid restrictions in 2020 led to a reduction in Irish household spending in the following areas;

  1. Eating Out (-€14bn)
  2. Holidays (-€3bn)
  3. Petrol/Diesel (-€700m).

While some families have had to face a reduction in take home pay, our spending has also reduced significantly and for many people they are getting to the end of the month with cash still in their bank accounts!

Once in a Lifetime Opportunity!

At some point in the (hopefully near!) future, the restrictions will lift. Restaurants will be open, weekends away will be back and trips to the cinema or a match will be a regular event. This means your spending will go back up and the ‘squeeze’ will come back on your monthly cashflow.

My advice to you is to seize this ‘once in a lifetime’ opportunity by starting some new habits now while there has been a reduction in household spending and the temptations to spend are curtailed.

If you start now, you are less likely to break the habit when we go back to the ‘old world’.

Smart Financial Habits

If you are serious about your financial wellbeing, these are the good habits you need to have:

  • Protect your family

Have a monthly outgoing that will provide financial security to you and your loved ones in the event of your death or illness.

  • Build an emergency fund

Lodge money into a deposit account (by standing order/direct debit) each month. This way you will have at least 6 months net income available for financial emergencies.

  • Start a “Big Stuff” savings account

Put money away each month into an investment account for 5 years to cover the future cost of your kids 2nd or 3rd level education, the Big Family Holiday or the Roundy Birthday Treat.

  • Start or increase your savings in your pension

If you have a pension talk to your employer about increasing your contribution. If you don’t have a pension talk to a specialist about how to get started.

  • Increase your monthly repayments on your personal loans or mortgage

This is a simple yet effective way to reduce debt in a structured way ensuring savings in the longer term.

  • Start a monthly standing order to your favourite charity

Charities have felt the impact of social distancing with less opportunities to engage donators. This is an easy way to give something back. And it can be done in a very tax efficient way too.

The order of priority of these good habits will be different for everyone. Talk to an independent, qualified Financial Adviser like Colman Financial Planning, about what habits are most important to you and your circumstances.




Tuning out the noise

In February this year, we saw a significant, sharp fall in the value of global stocks and shares.

For some of our clients, that meant a 30% drop in the size of their investment or pension fund. For other, more conservative clients the fall was less so. But it was still an uncomfortable experience.

Thankfully by August most clients’ funds had recovered those losses. However, similar falls in the past have taken a lot longer to recover.

For over 200 years, markets have consistently provided positive growth to long term investors. The journey is almost always peppered with volatility which means fund values will fall and rise along the way.

The one key trait that all successful investors share is discipline.

Sticking to the plan and riding out the storm can be hard to do when the waves are 30 feet high and crashing in around you but the storm always passes.

Having a strong relationship with an adviser will help you be better prepared to live your life through the ups and downs of the market. That’s the value of discipline, perspective, and calm.

That’s the difference the right financial adviser makes.

The following clip demonstrates the value of discipline. It was produced in 2019 but was just as relevant in 2020 and will be for as long as investors look for growth.

For help in tuning out the noise, just contact us at Coleman Financial Planning.

Money On Deposit? Make It Work For You Now!

Do you have money on deposit? Are you just leaving it there? Have you considered starting a regular savings plan or putting a lump sum you have accumulated in an investment? If not, then you really need to understand why now is such a great time to start saving and making your money work for you.

Don’t get me wrong, everyone should have some money on deposit (ideally 3 months net salary). Deposit accounts are accessible and won’t decrease in value (in the short term!).

Current Dilemma

The problem is that for almost 12 years deposit rates have been in free fall. This means banks, building societies and credit unions cannot give you a real return on your savings.

In addition to this, Central Banks (who control monetary policy) need to keep interest rates as low as possible for at least another 5 years. This is to help keep the cost of borrowing low so that businesses and households can function and grow.


So the only solution to growing your savings is to invest.

I’m not suggesting people start emptying their deposit accounts and start trading stocks and shares every morning (this is not Paddy Power stuff!!).

An investment should be spread into a range of diverse assets (i.e. stocks, bonds, commodities and property) and the proportion in each asset class should be determined by what level of risk you are comfortable with and how long you would like to invest for.

There are a wide variety of very attractive regular savings plans and investment bond options available. The fund or funds you invest in is very specific to your needs and objectives so it is important you meet with a qualified advisor who will help you establish the best fit for you.

So, what kind of returns should you expect?

Historically those investors that have had more of their fund invested in equities (i.e. global stocks and shares) have performed the best.

But even the more conservative savers have outperformed deposit rates by taking on a cautious level of risk.

Performance table

The key to this is to choose a fund that you are comfortable investing in. And one which is designed to help you reach your financial goals.

Next steps

The next step to take is to talk to a financial adviser – you can contact us here at Coleman Financial Planning.

After you complete a short investment questionnaire we will help you decide what your saving/investment goal is, how much money you can put away and for how long.

Most importantly we will outline the product options and choices that are best placed to deliver on your goals.