Name: Subrata Dasgupta
Profession: senior executive in a steel company
Name: Soma Dasgupta
Financial planner: Deepali Sen, Srujan Financial Advisers
The Dasguptas knew what their goals were but didn’t know which were possible, and by when. Having a financial plan has put the goals in sequence
Too much to do and too little time—that’s what worried Soma and Subrata. “I have about 7 years left before retirement. In this time I have to take care of our daughter’s marriage and our retirement,” says the steel industry veteran. “I was in a small place in Karnataka for many years and though I knew I needed a plan, I wasn’t able to get that kind of advice,” says Subrata. “I got influenced by colleagues. I went to an agent who caused me loss. This made me even more hesitant to get professional advice. As a result, I bought stuff at random.”
Till a few years back, the couple’s main goals included their daughter’s education (the 26-year-old has since finished her MBA and works for a financial services company in Mumbai), her marriage, and their retirement. “We also want to buy a flat in Mumbai,” says Soma, adding that they have a house in Bengaluru, which they had bought many years back. They thought that they would need to take loans to meet all these goals, and that would burden their finances.
The family moved to Mumbai a few years back, which is when they came to know of a financial planner from a friend. “We have been consulting Deepali (Sen) for about 3 years now, and it has made things so clear,” says Soma.
“In the first meeting, I was asked about my future plans. I was surprised; no one had asked me this before. I wrote down everything, lots of things. Then she asked us about dates and amounts (for each target),” says Subrata. This exercise itself, he said, made things clearer for him. Plus, the goals were close to each other in terms of time. “Maybe a year or two apart,” says Subrata.
The couple also got advice on what to do with some of their existing investments; those that didn’t serve a purpose were stopped, mostly insurance policies. Goal-related systematic investment plans (SIPs) in equity mutual funds were started, keeping the time in mind. “I also invest lump sum when I can,” says Subrata.
“We are clear and much more confident about what we can do. Thanks to the SIPs that we have invested in for the past 3 years, as a layperson, I can now think of my daughter’s marriage on a large scale,” says Soma.
For Subrata, one of the biggest advantages has been that the systematic approach has led to balancing long-term and short-term goals. “We also have a plan for emergencies,” he says. “We don’t think about this when things are going our way. It’s only when something happens that we think about planning for emergencies,” adds Soma.