A seasoned wealth-management consultant outlines a system for family financial planning in this how-to guide.
Doyle, a chartered financial analyst with 30 years’ experience, notes that she drew on her professional background, “my real-life experience as a wife, mother, daughter, sister, and friend,” and input from others to create this book, which aims to “help you take an objective view of your finances, build on your understanding of finance and investing concepts, and apply that knowledge in your everyday life.” She urges women to empower themselves and take a “family office approach” to organizing finances and understanding their family’s financial profile. To that end, she advises doing a “spring-cleaning” to determine which documents to keep or discard and to develop ongoing tracking systems, including an assets/liabilities balance sheet, a cash flow versus debt/expenses assessment, and an investment asset-allocation breakdown. She then segues into discussing investing, emphasizing that parents shouldn’t forget to save for their own retirements, even as they focus on saving for kids’ college educations. She also provides an overview of investment fundamentals and asset classes, as well as the finer aspects of financial literacy, such as how to understand basis points. The book concludes by outlining the different types and legal accountabilities of financial advisers. Debut author Doyle offers an appealing blend of expert and relatable perspectives in this guide; for example, at one point, she shows how she keeps organized by creating folders for each of her children’s schools. The tracking templates she provides here will also be excellent tools for anyone who’s trying to get a handle on managing their finances. Although Doyle’s discussion of the Sharpe ratio and other, lesser-known investing terms may be intimidating to some lay readers, it’s to her credit that she believes that her audience can and should understand these concepts, and that she explains all in a clear, accessible fashion.
A practical, encouraging financial manual.