Building a contingency fund, take appropriate health & life insurance risk cover and not to splurge on lifestyle products merely for building the style quotient.

Financial Advisors Interview
On: Nov 26, 2013 | From: Mukund Seshadri
Financial Advisors Interview in Advisorkhoj - Building a contingency fund, take appropriate health & life insurance risk cover and not to splurge on lifestyle products merely for building the style quotient.

Mukund Seshadri, is a CFP has done his Masters in Management Studies from University of Mumbai. Having spent 12 yrs in the industry, Mukund has a deeper knowledge and experience on various investment strategies, financial behavior of individuals, and their relationship with money. He writes regularly in The Economic Times, The Times of India,, DNA and Loksatta. He is a regular on television media and conducts financial planning workshops in Companies and Associations for the benefit of their employees and members.

What are your views on the current state of awareness on financial planning in India?

There is a serious need for spreading awareness about financial planning in families so that the children in the family inculcate financial discipline in them. Financial planning is about leading a disciplined lifestyle and the earlier one understands, better it is for their financial stability.

Do you think that the need for financial planning in India is different compared with other countries, especially in the developed world?

There is a striking difference in the needs of people in India as compared to those abroad, primarily owing to cultural and lifestyle differences.

During 14 years in this industry, what are the five common investment mistakes that you have observed?

Some of the mistakes that I have observed are:

  • Investing without knowing for what.

  • Availing loan on a depreciating asset.

  • Investing only to save taxes.

  • Expecting unrealistic returns.

  • Delaying in planning of finances.

What basic investments that a client should do during his first fours years of employment?

It is imperative that one builds a contingency fund, take appropriate health and life insurance risk cover and not to splurge on lifestyle products merely for building the style quotient.

What is the procedure you follow when you meet a new client?

We seek information from client relating to their financial goals, existing assets and sources of incomes, liabilities and expenditure. We chart out a detailed roadmap and make them understand the feasibility and costs associated with each of the goal and prioritize them. Financial plan is futile if not implemented, we implement the plan and follow up regularly on actionable as per plan and conduct a half yearly review to check the progress on the actionable.

What services do you/your firm provides? How do you charge for your services, and how much?

We provide comprehensive financial planning service, which includes goal analysis, retirement planning, investment planning, insurance planning and tax planning. We also offer services related to estate planning. The fee is entirely linked to the complexity of case and varies from case to case.

What value addition does the client get after paying a fee?

The client experiences a sense of financial security over a period of time apart from the improved savings to income ratio. Also a well-researched approach helps them yield better return on their overall portfolio in the long run.

How would you differentiate your service from the other advisors?

A financial plan succeeds when it is implemented on a timely manner. We have a dedicated team for planning as well as implementation. Our team follows up with the client rigorously to ensure that the action points are delivered effectively.

What are the few golden rules of investment that you would like to share with our investors?

Few simple things that a investor should follow in the nascent stage are:

  • Start early, however it’s never too late to start.

  • Look at investments as a provision for your financial goals rather than randomly invested money.

  • Understand implications on the liquidity, risk and return from an investment.

  • Expenditure should be what remains after saving for goals and not vice versa.

  • Understand the difference between a need and a desire and think twice before you spend on desires at the cost of your needs.