Financial planning

What to do with an extra hour?

Colin Dyer

There’s long been a debate on time vs. money, and last year an American study was published on the intersection between money, time and happiness. Interestingly 64% of those surveyed would choose money over time, but overall people who place more value on time are happier.


As financial planners we deal with both money and time, and are used to hearing that people just don’t have time to keep on top of their money! The thing about time is that while it’s up to you how you spend it, you can’t save it up and you can’t really get anymore. Except at 2am near the end of October when the clocks wind backwards and we get an “extra hour” added to our day…

That’s about as close as we get to conjuring up more time though, and realistically, the majority of us just sleep through it. So this year we thought it would be interesting to investigate what people would do with the gift of an extra hour at a more sociable time of day.

Using that extra hour

Although many of us often curse that there just aren’t enough hours in the day, more than 1 in 5 (21%)  don’t know what we’d do with an extra hour if we had it. Of those that did know, most people were likely to spend it relaxing; either watching TV or browsing the internet – although it was acknowledged that this might not be the best use of an extra hour!

Perhaps unsurprisingly, just 2% of people would spend the extra time planning their finances or making a Will etc. I tip my hat to that diligent 2%.

What’s slightly more promising for me is that that figure more than doubled when people were asked how they thought they should use an additional hour. Of course I should clarify that that was still fewer people than those who thought having a nap would be the best use of their time (8%).

Saving time and money

So financial planning might not be at the top of everyone’s priority list – fair enough. What was interesting to me though was that if someone were to offer an hour with a specialist adviser, almost 1/4 (23%) would choose a financial adviser or tax planner. Whilst people were least likely to spend an hour on their finances themselves compared to all their other options, the value of having a financial planner looking at your money for you did come through.

The top choice for professional adviser was a personal trainer (followed closely by us!). Things like getting fit or planning your finances can take a lot of effort, which I think is why people often put them off. However, at least when it comes to getting financially fit, people have the option to work with a financial planner and hand a lot of more complicated tasks off over to them. On the other side of the fence, a personal trainer can’t actually exercise for you.

Discovery session – an hour well spent

I won’t pretend that the financial planning process with an adviser doesn’t involve any effort on your part though. It should push you out of your comfort zone a bit and help you look at your finances from a different perspective. You’ll answer questions that you actually have to think about, not just the facts and the figures, but deeper stuff like: What’s your relationship with money? Or, what do you want your money to do for you?

Your first session is sometimes known as the Discovery Meeting, where a good financial planner will take the time help you pin down what you want out of life, and then play around with the moving parts to see how you could afford it. Perhaps more importantly it’s also where you get to ask all your questions and see if you think you’d like to work together in creating a plan for your future. It normally lasts about an hour (which is handy for this article!) and all in all, if you have an hour to spare I’d say it’s probably one of the best ways you could spend it.

Arrange your meeting with 1825

If you’re in the 98% of people who’d rather not organise their finances themselves in their spare time, why not speak to an 1825 Financial Planner to find out how we could help? Look at some of the areas we usually have the most impact in and use our web form to request a callback and arrange your free, hour-long, initial consultation.

And if you’re part of the majority who intend to enjoy an extra hour in bed this weekend, perhaps you could a sleep a little more soundly knowing there was an expert looking after your financial future.


This blog should not be regarded as financial advice.