By: Pauline Handy - Marketing Director, V.F. McNeil Insurance

In our last blog, Commit to a Financial Makeover Without Feeling Deprived, we reviewed some ideas on how to pioneer a different approach to managing your finances without feeling like you are missing out on life.  Hopefully, you found some of our tips to be helpful.

If so, it’s time to move on to the next phase so that you have a guide for when the time is right.  Our financial professional and life insurance specialist, Megan Maruzo, shared some great information during a presentation she gave to a women’s group in 2017 that I want to pass on to you! This blueprint for financial confidence is applicable to all.

How Do I Get Started?

You’ve already done that just by reading the first blog and now this one.  However, to more closely hone in on the steps, Megan recommends developing your goals, determining what your priorities are, and then taking the time to learn about the tools to get you to where you want to be. 



Start with your short-terms goal, the stuff you want to happen within a year (eg. an emergency fund, debt reduction, a new car, ahh… a vacation).  Speaking of vacation, I’ll share my personal viewpoint here.  Tomorrow is not a guarantee for anyone.  As my daughter always says, YOLO (you only live once)!  That being said… vacation can happen even if you are working on improving your finances.  Depriving yourself completely can be self-defeating.  This goes back to the first blog where we talked about changing your mindset all together.  I’ve been on plenty of amazing vacations on a shoestring budget.  Don’t hold off on life because you can’t afford 5-star.  Feel free to email me at phandy@vfmcneil.com if you want any suggestions!  I’m happy to chat.  

Okay, let’s get back on track.  Next, consider your medium-range goals.  Those are the things that you want to accomplish 1-5 years from now (wedding, baby, home).  Lastly, consider your long-term goals.   Why now, you ask?  Because those are the things that will take more time to accomplish.  They are the big nuts in life that require, well… long-term planning (educational savings, retirement, estate planning).  Time flies!  Here I am at almost 50 and I’m glad we got started early.  I can’t believe how fast it happened!    

Evaluate Your Current Financial Situation

The next steps to a good process for developing a financial confidence plan would be to…

Conduct a thorough review of your net worth – assets and liabilities.
Review your cash flow and monthly budget.  Define your budget and stick to it.
Consult with a professional to learn about the tools you need to make your goals happen.
Consider your tax situation.
Consider what protection you have in place.  Are you, your family, and your assets protected in the event something were to go wrong?
Gather information on your employer benefits (ie: disability, 401K plan, pensions)

Okay, that might seem like a lot, but don’t let this part overwhelm you.  Simply move on to the next part now. 

Work with Your Team


I have a team?  Yes, at V.F. McNeil, you have a team that works with you.  As a full-service, independent insurance agency, we can help you with many aspects of establishing financial confidence and peace of mind.  Allowing professionals to help you navigate through the steps above will reduce the stress of feeling unprepared and have you asking yourself, Why didn’t I do this sooner?   

Our service is free to you and you can use us as a resource for any part of this plan.  We encourage you to contact us with questions.  Accomplishing any goal starts with a single step.   Even if you are just fact finding for now, a complimentary review can be your first step.  We’re happy to help you take it.  From establishing financial confidence to protecting what you’ve worked hard for, our insurance professionals can help you make it happen.

For questions about this blog, or to learn more, contact V.F. McNeil Insurance today at (203) 481-2684.