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Financial Resiliency: The Quest for Financial Stability and Confidence

Clock7 min. read
byDavid Christianson onMarch 01, 2021

Canadians continue to deal with the biggest public health and financial crisis in living memory, which has put many in a precarious position. In this article, Portfolio Manager and Senior Vice President David Christianson with Christianson Wealth Advisors, shares his insights to help you build resilience and regain confidence amid the “new normal” of these pandemic days.

Canadians continue to deal with the biggest public health and financial crisis in living memory, which has put many in a precarious position. Many Canadians are struggling with the state of their finances and aren’t confident about their ability to weather the fallout of the current storm. 

For many Canadians, the COVID-19 pandemic has meant reduced income and/or added debt due to job loss or business slowdown or shutdown. Even those who have maintained their income are uneasy about what tomorrow will bring. The pandemic has delivered a message that is hard to ignore: unpredictable and uncontrollable forces can damage our financial well-being. 

Another important message emerges from this crisis: a careful financial plan developed in concert with a professional financial planner can help Canadians of all ages and wealth levels be better prepared and more resilient in the face of financial turbulence, as they look to renew their financial confidence. Certified Financial Planner professionals and Qualified Associate Financial Planner professionals recognize the importance of helping clients build resilience and regain their confidence amid the “new normal” of these pandemic days.

When you choose the services of a CFP professional or a QAFP professional, you’ll know you’re working with an individual who will always put your interests first. And you’ll know you’re dealing with someone who is qualified, has the knowledge, skills, abilities and ethics to serve your needs.

BUILD CONFIDENCE WITH A PROFESSIONAL FINANCIAL PLANNER

A recent survey conducted by FP Canada shone light on these feelings of financial vulnerability among a sizable proportion of Canadians. In our November 2020 Cross-Country Checkup survey, nearly two out of five (40%) respondents said their bank accounts couldn’t withstand a financial emergency – a significant increase from the 33% who said the same two years earlier. In addition, 65% of respondents in 2020 said they are not confident they will achieve their financial goals. 

The survey highlighted the value of navigating through this turbulence with a professional financial planner in your corner. Three-quarters of respondents who work with a financial planner say they are confident they can ride out a financial emergency. And among those who say they are confident they will achieve their financial goals, nearly three-quarters say they have a financial plan in place. 

Financial planners are also seeing a greater focus on other components of “preparing for the unexpected,” with more clients seeking help with estate planning, wills and powers of attorney, and life, critical illness and/ or disability insurance needs. 

Consumers who last spring may have focused on their immediate needs and stresses now seem to be embracing the importance of long- term financial planning and trusted counsel from a professional.

THE VALUE-ADD OF A FINANCIAL PROFESSIONAL

At a time when confidence has been shaken, Canadians can greatly benefit from the unique expertise offered by professional financial planners. 

When you choose the services of a CFP professional or a QAFP professional, you’ll know you’re working with an individual who will always put your interests first. And you’ll know you’re dealing with someone who is qualified, has the knowledge, skills, abilities and ethics to serve your needs. 

2020 was a year of unique challenges, and for many, that “worst-case scenario” for their personal finances became a reality. But Canadians are resilient, and 2021 represents an opportunity to renew their commitment to their financial well-being, and there is no shortage of certified and qualified professional financial planners ready to help them achieve it.

FINANCIAL PLANNING IS FOR ALL CANADIANS

Only 29% of Canadians say they have engaged the services of a financial planner. Those who work with a financial planner say they are much more confident in their financial outlook.

SOURCE: FP Canada’s 2020 Cross-Country Checkup.

FINDING A FINANCIAL PLANNER THAT’S RIGHT FOR YOU

Did you know that in most Canadian provinces, anyone can call themselves a financial planner? While Ontario and Saskatchewan have introduced title protection legislation to ensure only those who are appropriately qualified can call themselves financial planners, in most other provinces, anyone can call themselves a financial planner, regardless of their qualifications. It is important to work with someone who holds a CFP certification or QAFP certification, so you can be confident in the knowledge that your financial future is in the hands of a professional who is qualified, ethical and works in your best interest. 

Visit financialplanningforcanadians.ca/professional to learn how you can choose a financial planner for you.

A MEETING OF THE MINDS

Three professional financial planners weigh in on some of the key issues they are helping their clients assess and act upon, in light of COVID-19.

Well before the pandemic, we were helping prepare clients for unexpected circumstances, which helped them withstand the short-term disruptions. A good financial plan always contemplates the worst. What if someone becomes disabled or loses a job or a breadwinner dies? Such considerations are always built into a good financial plan. 

  • David Christianson, CFP, Portfolio manager and senior vice-president, Christianson Wealth Advisors at National Bank Financial Wealth Management in Winnipeg

When the pandemic first started, people were calling and asking about how they could deal with potential job loss and expressing worry about the investment markets. At that time, we helped them put defensive plans in place. Now that triage is done, they want to gain relief from stress and build for the future. The number of people requesting help to develop a comprehensive financial plan has greatly increased – it’s now at the point where there’s a one-month waiting list. 

  • Zena Amundsen, CFP, Owner of Astra Financial Services in Regina

Many people are looking for professional planning advice on how to prepare for the unexpected. Before, they might have felt comfortable with a reserve fund covering three to six months; now they want to plan for access to cash for a year or more. People don’t want to be forced to make financial decisions under pressure – that can lead to wrong, short- sighted decisions. 

  • Alim Dhanji, CFP, Senior financial planner with Assante Financial Management in Vancouver

Find a Financial Advisor

We can connect you with a financial advisor best suited to your needs that can help you or a loved one plan for the future and helping clients and regain your confidence.

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