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40% of investors do not have a financial plan

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Two in five consumers who have not created a financial plan believe they do not need one.

Nationwide Financial discloses this finding in an investor sentiment survey, “Fear of Financial Planning,” conducted by Harris Interactive. The survey’s release coincides with Financial Planning Week, taking place Oct. 7-11.

The survey finds that 38 percent of consumers who have no financial plan do not intend to create one.

“We live in an era when Americans are more responsible for their own financial security than ever before,” said Michael Spangler, president of Nationwide Funds. “However, for various reasons far too many haven’t taken the time to draft a detailed financial plan to help them achieve their goals over the short, medium and long terms.”

The survey finds that of the investors who have no financial plan:

  • 31 percent say they have not crafted one;
  • 20 percent say they do not need one;
  • 16 percent say they do not know how to create one; and
  • 15 percent note they don’t need a formal financial plan because “all of the information I need is in my head.”

According to the survey, of the 783 potential investors over the age of 18 who have at least $100,000 in investable assets, 36 percent have never worked with a financial advisor. Or they have in the past, but currently aren’t.

The top reasons given were respondents thought they could do it themselves and believe that they:

  • Don’t need professional help (40 percent);
  • Don’t want to pay the fees associated with working with a financial advisor (20 percent);
  • Don’t have enough assets to work with an advisor (11 percent) or;
  • Are afraid to trust a stranger to handle their financial needs (6 percent).

Of those investors that do work with a financial advisor, 19 percent say they do so because they believe they need help to make better investment decisions or need more information and options regarding investment opportunities.

In addition, 17 percent say they turn to a financial advisor to avail themselves of the professional’s knowledge, expertise and investment success.

More information about the “Fear of Financial Planning” survey is available here.