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Financial Planning: Addressing the Bigger Picture

Financial Planning: Addressing the Bigger Picture

April 07, 2022

When it comes to financial planning, most people know it’s important to establish safeguards and save money for the future. But too often, it’s an idea full of “should”s rather than a trigger for action—I should save for retirement, I should review my insurance policies, I should purchase disability insurance. When you’re busy living your wonderful life, it’s easy to let financial planning take a backseat. Consequently, many of our clients don’t come to us until they reach a major life milestone, like changing their job, buying a home, or having a baby. They want help reviewing their benefits, setting up insurance, or starting a college fund. And when that happens, our job is to help them see the bigger picture—so they can plan for the right things at the right time. 

First Things First

One of our primary goals as an advisor is to gain a clear understanding of our clients’ priorities, values, and goals so we can help them align their wealth accordingly—and that means looking at the bigger picture before we address specific concerns. So while you might be thinking about setting up a college fund for your two-year-old, we want to make sure your future is strong and protected first. After all, helping your child graduate debt-free is nice, but it’s not as beneficial if you run out of money during retirement because of it.

How We Help

Part of our job is to recognize potential risks and opportunities you might otherwise miss. We take time to ask the right questions about your goals, hopes, fears, concerns, and financial situation, and then we make sure your wealth is positioned for security and success no matter what the future holds. Here’s how we do that:

Most aspects of financial planning don’t feel “urgent” until they’re an issue, and even then, there are sometimes bigger issues to address before you can effectively solve the problem in front of you. That’s why no matter where you’re starting from, we look at your financial world as a whole and help you determine what’s most important—then we start planning.

Investing and building wealth is fun, but sometimes the more effective way to grow is to protect what you already have. If a simple review of your car insurance policy means protecting yourself against a potential lawsuit that could cost you hundreds of thousands of dollars—well, that’s a timely rate of return the stock market can’t beat.

Once we’ve built a solid foundation and know you’re prepared for unexpected emergencies, we identify strategies to help you grow toward your goals. That might include building your retirement fund, identifying charitable giving strategies, or starting that college savings plan.

Don’t Wait Until It’s Too Late

One of the best things about our job is knowing we helped protect clients during difficult times in their lives. We love knowing we’ve helped others build their emergency funds in time to use them when they really needed them, or helped someone set up disability insurance before they got injured and could no longer work. Of course, it’d be best if our clients never had to go through tough times, but that’s not how life works. So knowing they’re prepared and, consequently, able to face those tough moments with confidence—that’s why we do what we do.

But sometimes the job is bittersweet. Sometimes people come to us after a spouse has passed away, and we learn they didn’t have life insurance to help support their family. Sometimes people aren’t ready to start planning, and then something unexpected happens and they wish they’d been prepared. Sometimes saving money or purchasing insurance isn’t a priority—until it’s too late.

That’s why we try to help our clients see the bigger picture. Reviewing your insurance policies may not seem like a priority today, but you can’t control the other drivers on the road tomorrow or know when your home might be burglarized. We know it’s not fun to have these conversations, but they’re important because they can drastically change your future. There are countless what-ifs, and our job is to consider all the possibilities and help you prepare. That way, you can enjoy today knowing that whatever tomorrow holds, you’re ready.

If you’re unsure about where you stand financially, always ask. At Parkes Financial, we’re here to help you maximize your opportunities, whether you’re in a time of crisis or hoping to pursue a new and ambitious goal.

Dave Parkes, CFP®, RICP®


Dave works with hundreds of Bay Area dentists, physicians and their families. He has a deep understanding of the financial needs of the medical/dental practitioner. He makes planning simple and clear by coordinating both business and personal finances for his clients.

He also works with Silicon Valley executives, professionals, and their families.

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