It feels good to be back and in control of my life. For those that don’t know me, I had some pretty significant and complex health issues in the last half of 2021 and the beginning of 2022. At 52 years of age and with a young family, this came as a big shock.

While it took a big toll on me and my family, it also gave us a big reality check. It made us ask ourselves the hard questions.

  • Were we doing the things that are important to us?
  • Were we set-up financially to handle the crisis we were going through?
  • Would Fiona and the kids be ok financially if I died?

We were lucky in that not only did we have lots of family and friends to help, but we also had financial resources and insurance to see it through.

This experience also made me reflect on the importance of creating a financial plan in your 40s.

Mistake #1 No plan

Most of us start full-time work in our early 20s and plan to retire in our 50s or 60s. We expect to live at least until our 80s.

How to create financial plan in 40s

To put this another way, you will work for 30 or 40 years so you can fund 20 or 30 years of retirement. That’s not all though. While you are working you want to spend time raising your kids, going on holidays, and buying (and paying) off your family home.

What ends up happening is most people get to 50 or 55 and realise that they are 70% of the way through their earning and savings journey and become concerned that they are not on  track. They often decide at this point they need to get financial advice.

While it is definitely not too late for people in their 50s, there is much more benefit in starting planning earlier.

The next few articles will focus on the steps I recommend you go through to create your financial plan.

Step 1: Know your destination

The first step in any planning process is to know where you are going and what you want to do along the way. It will be different for everyone, but below are some of the questions you should ask yourselves.

  • Where do we want to live?
  • Do we want to send our kids to private or public schools?
  • Will we pay for our kids when they go to university?
  • What holidays do we want while the kids are still at home?
  • Do we want a career break, or career change?
  • When do we want to be able to stop work?
  • What do you want to do when you retire?
  • What financial legacy will we leave for our kids and grandkids?

Once you have the answers to these questions, you can then start mapping out your life. Make a timeline and start filling in the details.

I specialise in helping busy professionals and executives plan for the future and make the most of their money. They generally earn a good income, but are juggling their career and family life and are concerned they aren’t on track or could be doing more.

If you want to discuss how I can help, book a chat via the button below. Alternatively contact us on 0417 034 252 or at

About the Author
Phil Harvey is an independent financial adviser. In 2017 Phil set up his company Construct Wealth to help clients best manage their finances so they focus on what is important to them. He is a founding member of the Profession of Independent Financial Advisers and a tax financial adviser, registered with the Tax Practitioners Board.

General Advice Warning
This advice contains general information. It may not be suitable to you because it does not consider your personal circumstances. Phil Harvey and Construct Wealth are authorised representatives of Independent Financial Advisers Australia (AFSL 464629)

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