Originally Posted by Roger
Also, the costs for professional help are significant. Accountants and financial planners are necessary to navigate the complex taxing structures regarding retirement monies. The government rules in handling these matters is a maze. Attorneys are necessary to assemble documents associated with trusts, foundations, living wills, etc.
I think the other problem is that people do not value services without getting something tangible in return. When preparing tax returns, some may claim that the fee is too high, but at least they have a copy of their tax return to take home with them. With tax planning or financial planning, it becomes difficult because what is being "sold" is knowledge. For whatever reason, people despise paying for knowledge even though it has far greater value to the bottom line than the preparation of the tax return, bookkeeping, payroll, etc.
And in the above scenario lies the paradox, the people who need the guidance the most either are unwilling to pay the professional fees or cannot afford to. The entire financial planning profession caters almost exclusively to the already wealthy. The obvious reason being those folks have the money to pay the fees.
But it is the chicken or the egg paradox. Did the client become wealthy because they had professional advisers all along the way? Or did they acquire advisers after becoming rich? I think it is the former. Good business men and women recognize the need for competent advisers along the way. If you look at some of the more successful business owners here on lawnsite, there seems to be a common theme of professional continuing education and focusing on the areas of the business they are good at. "Work on the business, not in it."