Custodian Financial Planning’s Founder and Director, Matt Young answers some the questions he is most frequently asked.
Q. How much does it cost?
Matt: My initial meeting with a client is always at my own expense. Once we’ve been able to chat, and I have an understanding of the client’s present and future priorities, my team and I work with the client to put together a solution that will minimise their out of pocket expenses, whether that be by using their superannuation or something else.
At Custodian, we don’t have some kind of generic price list that can be quoted over the phone to any person who calls, because we understand that no two people are the same. Our priority is to come up with a personal financial plan that the client is completely comfortable with, that will move them towards the future they hope for.
Q. So what’s the best way for someone to get started with financial planning?
Q. So your clients are generally happy?
Matt: They really are. I take great pride in the fact that for many years now we have delivered down-to-earth, honest, good-quality financial planning and that our clients have been happy. Most of our business has come through ‘word-of-mouth’ referrals, which I’ve always found to be a good indicator of customer satisfaction. Many of our clients have taken the time to write testimonials describing the specific ways that we’ve been able to help them personally and reading these has also encouraged me that we are doing a good job of meeting people where they are at, when it comes to financial planning.
Q. The website says you offer a ‘mobile service’…what exactly does that mean?
Matt: Offering a mobile service simply means that I will come to you at a time and location that is most convenient for you. For some people, it is most convenient that we meet at a café near their workplace, during their lunchbreak. For others, it’s best that we chat over the kitchen table later in the evening, after the kids have been put to bed.
This is really what Custodian is all about… making the whole process of financial planning accessible for real people. We’ve found that asking people to juggle their commitments and priorities- work, kids, sport, social activities- just so that they can attend a meeting in an office space is a bit unrealistic. Office spaces can also be intimidating for some people. So anything that we can do to remove the obstacles that prevent people receiving the financial advice they need, we are happy to do!
Q. This personal priority sounds very time consuming, how long does all this take?
Matt: It is time-consuming process for our team, but not for the client. I understand that people don’t want to spend hours of the limited time that they have filling out forms. I actually think this is one of the reasons why people don’t get around to financial planning- having to fill out a lot of forms can kill the very best of intentions!
At Custodian, we love to do what we call ‘taking the pain out of the paperwork.’ Long forms are filled in by us and then explained to the client so that they can sign them. Of course that kind of work means that at Custodian we spend more hours putting a plan together for our clients than many other financial planners do, but we believe that it’s time well spent by us, if it saves time for our clients and makes the process accessible for more people.
Q. What types of people do you enjoy giving financial advice to?
Matt. All types! I actually just like people in general, really!
I love to work with families because I understand the challenges that they face as hardworking men and women, who are low on time, have a level of debt and can find the task of financial planning overwhelming. At Custodian, we work hard to be able to provide families with ways to move forward financially that match their family priorities, minimise out-of-pocket expenses and respect their time.
I also love to work with enthusiastic young professionals who want to begin their careers with great financial management, and would like us to guide them through the process of wealth and income protection.
Another group are those who have been lucky enough to receive a large financial inheritance, and who are looking to ‘find their feet’ by building their own understanding of finance and who require some professional guidance in that.
It’s a really rewarding job, being a Financial Planner. There’s nothing like seeing your clients over the years growing in confidence and in the peace of mind that comes from knowing that they have planned well for their financial future, and knowing you were able to play a part in it.
Q. What would you say to someone who is trying to get their finances in order before they see you?
Matt: At Custodian we offer a 'come as you are' service. Sure, people need to be motivated to do something about their finances, but many people think that in order to plan financially, you need to have savings, or a good head for numbers, or a lot of spare time everyday to sit on the internet watching the international money markets. That is simply not the case! If you always wait for 'one day when,' that day might never come- sometimes you've just got to make the decision to get started today!