Why a “Frankenstein” approach to financial planning isn’t frightful

205 years after it was published, the novel Frankenstein has inspired countless horror books, films, and more. The approach the scientist takes in the story to create a sapient creature might have more in common with effective financial planning than you think.

English author Mary Shelley published Frankenstein in 1818 after being inspired by historical tales of alchemists and the occult while travelling through Europe. 

The novel tells the story of young scientist Victor Frankenstein and his ambitions to create life. He assembles old body parts, strange chemicals and electricity from a lightning storm to bring his Creature to life. 

Frankenstein is considered, by some, to be the first true science-fiction story. It also has a couple of important lessons when creating a financial plan. 

Lesson 1: A bespoke approach could help you reach your goals 

Frankenstein’s experiment might not end well, but he does achieve his aim – creating an articulate life. 

He can’t simply use an existing body to create his Creature. So, Frankenstein must gather different parts that suit his needs. Taking a similar approach when you’re building a long-term financial plan could work too. 

There’s no one-size-fits-all financial plan. Your goals and finances will affect what’s right for you. The financial plans of two seemingly similar people may be very different.  

So, like Frankenstein, understanding which “parts” you need to create a financial plan could help you get more out of your assets and may mean you’re more likely to reach your goal.

Often, a financial plan involves bringing together lots of different areas that need to complement each other. If you aim to create long-term financial security, you might consider areas like:

  • Adding to a savings account to create a safety net
  • Contributing to a pension to create a retirement income
  • Investing outside of a pension to provide flexibility
  • Paying off your mortgage so your expenses fall later in life
  • Taking out financial protection that could prevent shocks from derailing your plans.

Creating a plan that’s tailored to you may seem complex, as you’ll need to balance multiple factors. Yet, a “Frankenstein” approach could help you take steps that are right for you and discard those that aren’t appropriate. 

As a financial planner, we can work with you to create a bespoke financial plan that’s tailored to your needs. We’ll help you understand how different aspects of your plan can work together to support your goals, like the electricity that brings Frankenstein’s creation to life. 

Lesson 2: Keep track of your “creation”

When Frankenstein is selecting the features for the Creature, he purposely chooses beautiful ones. Yet, when the Creature is animated the result is “hideous”, and so, repulsed by his own work, the scientist flees. 

When Frankenstein returns, the Creature is gone, and it leads to a series of events that cause grief and guilt. 

Fortunately, you don’t need to worry about an eight-foot monster if you leave your financial plan unattended. But things could go awry if you don’t manage it.

Regular financial reviews could help ensure your plan continues to reflect your goals and that you remain on track.

Over time your wishes or circumstances may change. In some cases, making alterations to your financial plan could make sense. Factors outside of your control, such as a period of high inflation or government changes to tax allowances, might also affect how suitable your financial plan is. 

Financial reviews may highlight potential risks and opportunities. So, they may be an important part of getting the most out of your money over the long term. 

We can help you create a tailored financial plan

As financial planners, we can help you create a bespoke financial plan that suits your circumstances and goals. We’ll bring together different aspects of financial planning to create a holistic plan that’s tailored to you. 

If you’d like to talk to one of our team, please get in touch. 

Please note: This blog is for general information only and does not constitute advice. The information is aimed at retail clients only.

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