How to schedule regularly recurring lump sum expenditures (e.g. a car purchase every 5 years)

Regularly recurring lump sum expenditures that occur on something other than an annual schedule – e.g. the purchase of a new car every five years – can be set using a combination of start and end events (or one or more stages) on the Time panel and the special Recurrence setting, in Advanced Settings. 

1. To schedule recurring lump sum expenses,first go to any of the Expense screens, depending on how you want to categorise the expense. 

Tip: Basic category expenses will be included beneath the purple basic expenses line on the Let's See > Cash Flow chart whereas other types of expenses will not. 

2. In the People panel, to the right side of the screen, check and possibly select the owner or owners of the expense. 

- Events will be set initially as being owned jointly for couples; otherwise, the default owner will be the primary person in the client case. If an event is to be owned (paid for) solely by one person, untick (deselect) the co-owner. Importantly, a solely owned event will drop out of the plan automatically upon the death of the person who owns it. 

3. Go to the Time panel, located to the right side of the screen and select the panel's Event tab.

4. Select the first event/year the expense will occur (green dot). If this is to be in the first year of the plan, simply select the Start event. Next, select an end event (red dot) to indicate when the recurring expense will no longer be active in the plan. 

Tip: The Time panel, Event tab, New Event button (bottom-right) can also be used to add events to the timeline, if needed, to schedule the future start and end of expenses.

   

Stages could also be used to set the overall timing of this recurring lump sum expense. If stages were used instead of start and end events, the recurring expenses would begin at the start of the first selected stage and would and at or near the end of the last selected stage, depending on how evenly the frequency works within the selected time period. 

5. Enter the basic information about the expense such as the name, the initial amount, and specify whether the amount entered is a yearly or monthly one. 

Tip: Try not to over-think the semantics of the Yearly option. The software only needs to know whether the amount entered is an annual one or if Monthly is selected, whether it should be multiplied by twelve. Almost invariably a recurring one-off expenditure would be a Yearly (annual) amount. 

6. Next, expand Advanced Settings and select Recurrence.

7. Enter the interval (the number of years) in which the expense will recur.

- For example, if a car is to be purchased every five years following the first car purchase (the start event), enter a Recurrence Interval (Yrs) of 5 years. Following the first purchase, the expense will recur every five years until the end event. If the end event is less than 5 years after the last regular purchase, the expense would effectively end with the last full interval.

8. Under Advanced Settings > Inflation, you may also check and possibly the default inflationary assumptions applied to the expense. In this case the 

  

- This default inflation rate comes from the software's Preferences > Plan Preferences (to the right side of the screen) > Default Inflation / Growth Rates > Inflation Rate %. As with almost all default settings, this preference can be edited and effectively overridden for any individual item in the plan, such as this expense. 

9. Click Add or Update to save you changes. 

Look to the line graph at the bottom of the screen. A series of spikes should appear from the selected start of the expense until the end of the expense. These spikes indicate a series of one-off expenses that occur in the interval you entered a moment ago. 

Again, following the first purchase, the expense will recur in the interval set until the end event. If in the final interval the end event (or the end of the final selected stage) is less than the full interval (e.g. less than 5 years), the expense would effectively end with the last full interval.