Navigate life’s big transitions

Welcome to PlanningSolo

Independent Financial Advice for the big transitions in your life.

Retirement. Bereavement. Divorce. 

These are intimidating and overwhelming times. Yet they can also be a chance to reset the trajectory of your life, to take stock of what you have – and what you want out of life.

Making decisions when you’re at a fork in the road is tough. But good, impartial financial advice from an independent financial planner can make it a lot easier.

After all, if you’re already unsure about money, investments, superannuation, insurances or anything else to do with your finances – then confronting one of life’s big transitions isn’t going to make you feel any more in control.

That’s where we come in.

Feeling more confident about your future

Your world is changing

You might feel like you’re walking along a new corridor now, after your divorce, retirement or loss. Walking along a corridor from the world you knew, to a future filled with closed doors and unknown rooms. This can be exciting, but also a little frightening. But either way, you’re going to have to choose which doors to open soon. Which means that you’re having to make decisions – lots and lots of decisions.

Big ones, small ones, meaningful ones, meaningless ones.

But making decisions like this, at a time like this, is tough. Choosing which door to open is scary when you don’t know what’s on the other side.

We are here to help

Well, that’s where we come in. PlanningSolo is all about providing people walking down exactly that corridor with the information, advice and guidance they need to make the best choices.

We appreciate the unique challenges you’re facing as you head down this corridor of uncertainty, and the many worries on your mind.

Will you be ok? Will there be enough money? How to avoid mistakes? How do I do this on my own?

We’ve helped lots of people walk this exact path before – and we’re here to help you do it with new confidence and purpose.

The Promise

Part of helping people walk this path is to make one, clear promise to everyone we get to work with:

We’re not going to be the way you’re worried we’ll be. We know that people worry about seeing a financial adviser, especially during such crucial times in their lives, because they think they’ll patronize them. Or criticize them, press down on the financial scars we all have. Implied blame, overt judgment, opaque methods and so much talking over them.

That’s not how we work. We’re not condescending, dismissive, brusque or sneaky.

We meet people where they are and ensure that our approach and advice reflect what they need, right now.

Finding the solution with you

Over the years we’ve been helping people navigate the financial side of their divorce, we’ve learnt a few things. One of them is that helping people going through a divorce – or the loss of a loved one, or even retirement – requires a different approach.

Empathy. Transparency. Patience. And, most importantly, humility.

There’s limited value in us sitting there, telling you what you should, when you should do it, and how you should do it.

We can do that, of course, but the real value comes when we find the best solution together.

Which is why we work with you to find the best doors to open in that corridor you’re walking through.  

Jordan Vaka

I was born in the 80s, grew up in the 90s, finished school in the 00s, built my practice in the 10s, and forged this new path in the 20s.

I met my now-wife back in high school and looking back on the life we’ve built over the last 20-odd years brings a big smile to my face

…and an awareness of the growing crop of grey in my hair.

Our funny and energetic son came along in 2017. Then his boisterous and charming little brother joined us in 2021.

Lifelong residents of Melbourne, we decided to move to Ballarat in 2022. Which makes us part of the post-COVID influx that’s disrupted all the usual traffic flows. It’s absolutely wonderful living here, but the absence of real charcoal chicken has been an unexpected wrinkle.

I love my work, so between that and my family, spare time’s a bit of a luxury.

What time there is I like to spend in the garden, or trying to work out why my tools won’t do what I want them to do.

Independent Financial Advice

It surprises a lot of people to learn that ‘independence’ has a very strict, very specific legal meaning when it comes to financial advice.

Under the Corporations Act, advisers can only call themselves ‘independent’ if:

  • They do not receive any form of commissions
  • They do not receive percentage based fees
  • They do not receive any other gifts or benefits from the issuer of a financial product.
  • Their licensee follows the same rules.


These strict rules mean that there were only 84 truly independent financial advisers in Australia when we received our license.

We are very proud to have been the 85th.

 What Does It Mean?

Our advice is – always – solely in your best interests. We have no ties with any bank, institution or product provider. No commissions, no percentage fees.

We’re here to help you rebuild your best financial life. So we work for you, and you alone. Just clear, useful, independent advice in your best interests.And for people facing one of life’s big upheavals, we think that’s pretty important.

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