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What Are Your Values?

13 July 2020

The way that we interact with money is based on our attitude towards it, which usually stems from how we observed our family dealing with money when we were growing up.

Many people will try and hide financial issues from their families or avoid the issue themselves. However, ignoring a problem rarely makes it disappear. Financial uncertainty is uncomfortable, but it is important to look at your situation realistically and actively seek solutions to your problems.

Financial decisions affect the whole family, and as such the whole family should be kept in the loop (at least partially) with regards to goals, concerns and spending priorities.

By involving them in the decision-making process you are providing guidance for similar situations in the future. An added bonus is that when people are privy to the factors influencing a decision, they are more willing to accept the choices that follow. Be sure to listen to any input that your family members may have, the focus is on supporting one another.

Consensus is an important factor for effective family leadership. It creates a common commitment towards a collective future.

A financially competent family is one that is educated on evaluating risk and being aware of how their decisions are affecting those around them. After all, the decisions you are making are creating a financial legacy, not only in terms of wealth, but also in terms of the financial decision-making process that you are passing along.

There are three areas that you can consider when having these conversations with your family:

  • How did your parents manage money and what was your childhood experience?
  • Who relies on you right now? (This might be your children, partner and parents.)
  • What are your future responsibilities? (Education, travel, retirement, etc.)

Far too often a legacy is viewed only as a notion relating to physical wealth and to the past. This passive perspective of legacy fails to see it as a living concept connected by personal histories, family behaviours and financial patterns. It’s important to remember where we’ve come from whilst staying in touch with what’s happening right now and keeping an eye on where we are headed.

An enduring family legacy can only be built when all members are in agreement about the basic set of principles that support their beliefs, attitudes and behaviours. Legacy encompasses everything that a family wants to preserve for the future – the history, values and knowledge, which are just as important as a family’s financial assets.

It’s not always easy to remain impartial along this journey, and to have a trusted, objective view. Let us help you ensure the longevity of your family's wealth and values.

Sanlam Life Insurance is a licensed financial service provider.
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