My name is Graham and I am a financial adviser.
I have said it.
The very words conjure up images of pin stripe suits, pie charts and middle aged people lecturing on interest rates. Add to that various mis-selling scandals over the years and you have a profession that is viewed with disinterest at best, and with disdain and suspicion by large sections of society.
But that’s not me.
I’m also a father to two young children, a 4 year old boy (no one warns you about 4 year old boys!) and an 8 month old girl who I’m convinced is ageing faster than anyone I know as I swear she was only born yesterday. For over a decade I’ve specialised in mortgages and insurance (stay with me!), also known as debt, disease and death.
Up until 8 months ago I spent my working week being the guy in the suit. But, like most parents (or at least those who, before bringing forth new life into the world tended to spend their weekends reaching for the lasers in dark clubs), having children made me realise what is really important. Life’s too short to be someone you’re not.
So, one week before the birth of my daughter I quit my job and launched Hudson Rose with the sole aim of trying to make financial advice a bit more accessible and relaxed without scrimping on quality or professionalism. Now, I admit, the kind of reckless behaviour that makes a man quit his only source of income a week before a baby arrives is probably not the kind of trait people look for when choosing a financial adviser, but 8 months in and I am still here to tell the tale.
Ditching the suit and tie and being able to present myself to clients as ‘me’ has been a liberating experience. The barriers that were perceived to exist when one party is all suited and booted have been removed and this enables a true discussion to take place between parties. For me, the advisor/client relationship needs to be equal as when we are more relaxed we tend to ask more questions, understand things more deeply and generally feel happier. And feeling happy is a good thing.
Becoming a father threw me into a completely unfamiliar world with choices and questions at every turn – none of which came with any advice as to whether my wife and I were doing the right thing. Do we get a push chair or carry the baby? Should this cot have a bumper or not? What about co-sleeping? Why are there so many poppers on these things!?!? It eventually dawned on us that there is no one size fits all approach to parenting – thank goodness – and so far we have successfully kept two little ones fed, watered and (mostly) happy.
The one thing I was familiar with prior to becoming a father was some of the life admin surrounding money. I was (and still am) a bit disappointed at how little is out there for new parents with regards getting advice on some of the financial considerations of having a family.
And so, I am here before you with my first introductory post of what will hopefully be a series. I wanted to think of some catchy campaign title but, as yet, my brain is failing me. Suggestions gratefully received (read: needed)!
My aim is to highlight what is out there to help protect you, your partner, your children and your home as well as provide some guidance on how having children might affect you from a money perspective. I appreciate that the cut and thrust world of personal finance and insurance is not everyone’s idea of a riveting read. But if it’s not something you have thought about or reviewed since becoming parents or it’s on the eternal ‘to do when I get that ten minutes to myself/work is less manic/the baby sleeps/the house is tidy’ list, you may find it useful.
Life changing in fact, if circumstances mean that you use it.
I would also welcome suggestions on any areas you want to find out about so questions are actively encouraged. If you decide that you need to look into it further, then my work here is done. I won’t even be hurt if you choose to speak to another adviser about it. Just so long as more people are covered and manage to cross ‘sort the insurance’ off their to do list then I will be happy. Sometimes life throws us a curve ball and being prepared is the best we can do.
Peas and love
A Guest Blog from Graham Taylor
Graham is a father of two and a regulated provider of financial advice who believes you don’t have to wear a suit to know a thing or two about looking after your money and protecting those you love. You can find out more about Graham at Hudson Rose and follow him on Facebook and Instagram.
Graham is hoping to write a series of blogs for CheltenhamMaman covering Money Matters and would love to know which myths you’d like busted! Leave a comment or drop him a message to let us know what topics you would find useful.