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components of a financial plan

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legal warning: The information here should not be understood legally as financial advice. If you believe anything on this site is in error, please contact me. I am always open to corrections, new ideas, and new opinions...

I am not sure at what point after I began trying to take control of my finances that I realized I had no idea how to know if or when I would actually attain the control I was seeking.  When would all the obsessive research and spreadsheets be enough that I could confidently say that I was in control of my finances?

While there is no magic formula for the perfect financial plan, I knew that whatever plan I’d follow, I would have to take into account four phases of my life: the present, the unknown, the past and the future.  Below is the list I compiled of the major components of my financial plan:

(1) The Present:  Make sure you spend less than you earn

  • (a) Live on a budget – this means composing a monthly spending plan, including your fixed expenses, variable expenses and tzedakah
  • (b) Occasionally review and attempt to reduce expenses
  • (c) Increase income – this includes watching your investments (for example, your keren hishtalmut) to make sure you are getting the most out of your money.

(2) The Unknown:  Plan for occasions when things do not go according to plan

(3) The Past:  Deal with your financial past

(4) The Future:  Plan and build towards your ideal future

What other items do you think are important to a financial plan?

PS – As you can see the plethora of links above, I have written on all of the subjects above except one – planning for an estate.  If anyone has had any experience and would be willing to speak to me about it or write and article, please contact me at


  1. Gidon says:

    Glad to come across your blog again, Jon. Through Nonprofit Banker.

    I just finished Yarive Shulem’s 4 session course “introduction to personal finance” or similar. He less so but you especially did not emphasize making an effort to increase your income by creating a passive income stream.

    • jonnydegani says:

      This was one of the items I would classify under “increase income” above. In the note next to it, I focused on investments, but this category would include getting a better salary, getting an additional and very importantly, building a passive income stream.
      Have you successfully built any passive income streams? Could you tell us about it?

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