When I came across FIRE revolution, first thing I wanted to do is to list all my financial goals I wanted to achieve, not just the retirement goal alone. Then added values and assessed current status of each of those goals like Home, Children education etc. This really helped me a lot in planning on my goals and also for FIRE. Here I will share that tool that I created in Excel spreadsheet with you.
Goal Planning and Tracking Tool
Let’s go through the step by step instructions of how to use this Goal Planning and Tracking tool.
List all your current savings and assets that you can use for achieving your goals like Fixed Deposits, Mutual Funds, PPF etc in a separate sheet.
List all your goals which requires financial planning like your retirement, child education, marriage, Foreign trips, Philanthropy etc. Enter these Goals list in the column “Goal Name”.
Now for each of these goal, you have come up with the “Target Corpus” you want to save. For example, Based on your current monthly/yearly expenses, you are arriving at conclusion that need to save 2 Crores for your Retirement. Please note that this tool is currency neutral i.e. you are just entering numbers for your local currency. It works for Rupees, Dollars or any other currency as long as all your money numbers in the same currency. There is also no Inflation adjustment, so make sure you consider it while coming up with Target Corpus. Make sure you try to assess the future requirement for these goals as close as possible. You don’t want to over-estimate the future requirement and feel depressed.
Once Target Corpus is entered against each of the goals listed, enter “Years to achieve” column next. For certain goals like Children’s education, you may have clear number of years and for some other goals like Home, Car etc. you may come up with your own desirable period.
Now bring your current assets sheet and map asset values to respective goals that you want them to be allotted by filling in “Current Savings” column. Make sure that you allot aggressive assets like Equity Shares, Mutual Funds etc. to your longer term goals like Retirement, education etc. which have more than 10 year period. For goals like Home, Cars etc. which have less than 5 years, you may want to allot more safer assets like Savings account, Fixed Deposit etc. You should have already thought about these asset risks while investing itself. Here we are just mapping each asset to the Goal for which the investment was made. You can use”Investment Mapping” column to add description of the assets allotted to the goal.
Then you need to populate “Estimated Investment Growth”. Depending on the asset type, enter the expected average return % for each of these goals. Please note that debt investments like PPF, Fixed Deposit, Savings Bank accounts may give less returns compared to Equities and Mutual Funds etc. Again the Goal period reduces, you need to reduce your risk and hence the return will also reduce. So never input 15% if your asset is equity, as in last 5 years of your goal period you would have to move major portion of your asset to debt and hence you may put an average of 10 to 12%.
Once you populate above columns, the spreadsheet does its magic. Column F (Current Saving Can Grow) provides the Estimated Final value your current assets can grow based on the estimated growth percentage you entered.
Column G (Additional Savings required?) tells whether you need to save more for that goal. If yes, then column H and I shows how much you need to save more per year and per month to reach the Target Corpus by your goal period.
You can use this tool to track your goal yearly and increase or decrease your savings allocation to each goal. You can download this tool by clicking on the download button below.
Please provide your feedback after using this tool and let me know if you have any ideas to improve this tool.