Put it simply, a financial planner is always a financial adviser but a financial adviser is not necessarily a financial planner.
According to the website http://www.moneysense.gov.sg/financial-planning.aspx, it defines financial planning as (brackets are mine):
1) Managing your cashflow for your needs today and also to meet future goals like your retirement or your children’s education; (non-FA activity)
For my children education, I save in PTPTN loan, at the same time I enjoy the tax relief.
For my retirement, I invest in property for passive cash flow ( finally this year bought a condo after searching for 4 years) and REIT.
2) Managing you and your family’s exposure to unforeseen events like pre-mature death, illness or disability; (FA activity - insurance)
This is insurance portfolio whereby Mr CF lieu can give you a better picture. You have to be diagnosed 1st.
3) Investment planning to meet your financial goals; (FA activity - investments)
Stock, UNIT TRUST (EPF), Property, REIT
4) Planning for your retirement; (non-FA activity)
If Number 3 is done well, your retirement will be taken care of. You need to know your "FIGURE". Assume you no need to take care of house loan, car loan, children education, medical cost etc. How much you need to survive per month now?
Let's say the figure is X? Assume inflation is 4%. How much more year of retirement from now, assume Y.
Example: I need about 2k per month (X value)
I am 38 years old now, I assume I will retire at 55 years old, so Y = 17
My figure = 2000+ (2000* 0.04 * 17) = 2000+1360 = 3360 (simplify calculation)
At 55 years old, I need RM 3360 per month. So per year I need to have RM 40320.
Assume I invest only in REIT which give me 7% (ARREIT: http://reitmethod.com/), how much I need to invest in REIT to get RM 40320 per year.
Z * 0.07 = 40320
Z = 576000.
At 55 years old, I need to have almost HALF A MILLION in order for me to retire.
This is just a simplify calculation, for more you can refer to http://retiremethod.com/
5) Planning your taxes efficiently; (non-FA activity) and
So far so good - through maximize tax relief.
6) Planning the transfer of your estate to the people and causes you care about (non-FA activity)
NOT YET DONE.
If you interested on the above 6 job task, you can look for CF lieu, who blog at http://www.howtofinancemoney.com/.