Robert Toomey, CFA/CFP, is Vice President of Research for S. R. Schill & Associates on Mercer Island.

Robert Toomey, CFA/CFP, is Vice President of Research for S. R. Schill & Associates on Mercer Island.

Financial planning perspective on life milestones | Money Matters

By Robert Toomey

My daughter recently graduated from a master’s program at a university in Texas. My wife and I attended the ceremony and made a car trip out of it, visiting the Grand Canyon and other national parks along the way.

Her graduation was a great milestone for both her and us. The trip got me reflecting on planning, how my daughter planned for it, and the importance of planning in successfully achieving milestones in life.

For a person graduating from any program of learning, there must be planning on both the student’s part and, in many cases, the parents’ or guardian’s part. Many planning questions and assumptions go into making the decision to embark on an intense study program. On the part of the student, of course, questions are focused on desirability of a career, personal strengths, which school may have the optimal program, or what resources and course of study are best to achieve the desired outcome.

On the parent or guardian’s part, some key questions might be: What counsel can I give my child in choosing this path? How might we best harbor financial and non-financial resources to support the person in this endeavor?

Is there a tie-in to financial planning in this type of planning? I would say very much so.

In financial planning, we take all we know about a person’s or family’s finances and financial resources and help them develop the best roadmap for achieving their financial goals. As planners, we very often run an education analysis for our clients with young children. Advance preparation in estimating the cost of future education for a child and establishing a savings program to fund those expenses is not only a critical part of a younger family’s financial goals, but also goes a long way in reducing the stresses and concerns of funding future education expenses.

Successfully achieving major milestones in life takes planning. Take retirement for example. Isn’t being prepared the best and least stressful way to arrive at this milestone? There is no better way in my mind to be prepared for any major life objective than to plan well for it.

From a planning perspective, I would view these “milestones” as goals which, in many cases, need financial resources to accomplish. A comprehensive financial plan takes into consideration a multitude of elements that are necessary in achieving many major life milestones and, most importantly, provides the client with important insights into the best ways to accomplish the goal or multiple goals.

Whether it be for education, retirement, estate planning, or other life goals, usually there is a financial component involved which can be analyzed and understood in a way that not only enhances the probability of success, but also reduces risk and stress in achieving the desired outcome.

Robert Toomey, CFA/CFP, is Vice President of Research for S. R. Schill & Associates on Mercer Island.

Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in Business

Christie Nelson new leader of John L. Scott office that serves Kent

Office also handles Covington and Maple Valley with 60 brokers

Kent-based Blue Origin’s seventh human flight set for May 19

New Shepard-25 will launch from West Texas

City of Kent again looking for new tenant at Riverbend restaurant

City terminates lease with Half Lion Public House, which had hoped to reopen at golf complex

Kent-based Blue Origin announces crew for next space flight

6 members to include former Air Force captain selected in 1961 as first Black astronaut candidate

Kent man among 40 Under 40 honorees by Puget Sound Business Journal

Andy Song, 33, works as chief operating officer at Kids and Family Counseling

Black Press Media operates Sound Publishing, the largest community news organization in Washington State with dailies and community news outlets in Alaska.
Black Press Media concludes transition of ownership

Black Press Media, which operates Sound Publishing, completed its sale Monday (March 25), following the formerly announced corporate restructuring.

Kent Police to host Business Crime Prevention Summit

Meeting set for Thursday, April 25 at the accesso ShoWare Center

Owner, manager of Kent Subway illegally took employees’ tips

One of 10 Subway locations in state investigated by U.S. Department of Labor

New Kent international market holds grand opening on West Hill

Queen Safa Market and Deli open at 23424 on Pacific Highway S.

File photo
Boeing has 90 days to create comprehensive action plan, says FAA

The FAA continues its investigation into the flight that depressurized because of a door malfunction

Curry Pizza House opens first Washington location in Kent

Restaurant on the East Hill along 104th Avenue SE