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  • Writer's pictureKathryn Minasian

Our Relationship With Money and Why It Matters.

Updated: Nov 22, 2022


Outlining the guiding principles of my tax practice was an initial task that I was excited to tackle. It was a storm of words on a white board that resulted in two very strong core values. As it turns out, I wanted a business model and client journey that supported and centered around two ideas: ‘our relationship with money’ and ‘planning for our future’.

Why were the core values of a tax practice not centered around saving money or lowering taxes?

Well…we hear many firms tout that they can “save you the most tax possible.” Frankly, that is ALWAYS the job of your tax professional, but it shouldn't be the selling point. There is so much more behind each of our financial decisions than what decision will result in the least amount of taxes paid. This methodology, that there should be something MORE to our tax conversations than just the most savings possible, led me to create a client journey that leans into our emotions and relationship with money. Acknowledging our relationship with money and our plans for our future leads to holistic conversations that go well beyond tax savings and provide peace of mind around our choices.

Our Relationship With Money and why it matters.

Our relationship with money is influenced by so many factors and impacts us daily, consciously and subconsciously. To name a few of those influencing factors:

  • How our parents treat money - did they balance the checkbook every month or buy a weekly lottery ticket?

  • Our socioeconomic environment as children - did you grow up poor or privileged? What is your current definition of privileged?

  • Traumatic money events like foreclosing on a home or losing a job - did something happen that causes you to treat money differently today? Do you save more than you used to out of fear of the unknown?

  • How our partner, friends and those of our generation view and act with money - do you give in to the peer pressure to spend or splurge because others are doing it? Can you stand up for yourself and how you want to use your money?

  • How we define our safety and security as it relates to money - ie. what amount in savings makes you feel secure? Is it 10k, 100k or 1M?

All of these experiences and exposures impact our anxiety or flippancy around spending money and how we USE our money. Not all financial decisions are going to be tax saving decisions or tax advantageous. But there are ways to plan for this and be prepared for it.

At Clarity, we know that the same boilerplate tax plan is not a fit for everyone. Even in identical tax situations, the influencing factors and longer term goals might dictate different results. Let’s make decisions with our eyes open — let’s know the facts when it comes to taxes and the numbers, but let’s also strive to acknowledge how we’re feeling about it, why we are making this choice and where it lands when we look at our goals and aspirations. Welcome to Clarity!

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