Researchers from the University of British Columbia have discovered that using money to free-up time creates more happiness than purchasing material goods. Over 6,000 people were questioned about ‘buying time’ – paying people to take on tasks that participants chose not to conduct themselves. The results confirmed that people who ‘bought’ time enjoyed better life satisfaction.
Research lead Dr Elizabeth Dunn said: “Money buys time pretty effectively. Is there something you hate doing that fills you with dread and could you pay somebody else to do that for you? If so, then science says that’s a pretty good use of money.”
In my work as a financial planner, I see this choice paying dividends repeatedly. Who has the time, energy or inclination to focus properly on their finances after a busy list? Which doctor can keep up-to-date with every change to tax and pension regulation while maintaining the high-octane career? For the busy medical professional, your time is too valuable to be spent navigating an ever more complex financial landscape.
If you take on a DIY chore at home without the necessary experience or tools for the job, the mistake could prove costly. Failing to engage with an adviser with sound knowledge of the NHS pension could be a far more expensive disaster. Likewise, miscalculating the tax due on your pension, not spotting an error in your contractual pay or failing to invest suitably for the future are errors best avoided.
And of course, the skilled professional that you hire should do a better job. According to peer-reviewed research by asset management company Vanguard, an average investor achieves returns of around 3 per cent more per year with the help of an adviser compared with investing on their own.
This annual study places a value on the key services performed by advisers which add financial
benefits to a client’s portfolio – termed in this study “Adviser Alpha”. As well as wealth management and financial planning, one of the most important practices of financial advisers was found to be behavioural coaching – protecting the investor from their own emotional decisions.
A competent financial adviser should provide the solid investment philosophy, sounding board, emotional support and experienced wisdom to enable complete peace of mind and the freedom for you to excel in other professional or personal pursuits.