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10 Steps to Building a Complete Financial Portfolio

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Take Stock of Your Life
You have a dream about your life. You know where you want to live, what you want to drive, and the type of clothes you want to wear. Have you ever stopped to calculate exactly what it would cost you, in financial terms, to achieve that desired lifestyle? If you're like most people, the answer is no.

This step-by-step guide empowers you to take action by building a complete financial portfolio. What is a complete financial portfolio? It is a term I use to define an individual who has fully-funded retirement accounts, is debt-free, has a six-month emergency cash reserve, owns diversified investments across different asset classes, and invests in themselves.

Before you begin building your complete financial portfolio

Sit down, take out a pen, and make a list of everything you own (e.g., assets such as cars, stocks, bonds, mutual funds, cash, bank accounts) and everything you owe (e.g., liabilities such as student loans, credit card balances.) Be brutally honest - don't keep something off the list because you'll "get to it tomorrow", or "it isn't a problem." The key to changing your life is to determine exactly where you stand now, in this moment in time. This balance sheet is going to be extremely important as we craft our way through the following steps.

Commit to change

The process of building a complete financial portfolio can take years. If you are dedicated and diligent, you will reach your goal, so don't lose hope!

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