Personal Finance Tips from a Recent Trip

Have you ever gone to ‘SATSANG’. I know 90% of you will say no – we all think that at satsang they just talk about god. Few months back I visited one such event, but was, surprised to see what they speak. They talk about people’s life experiences & how you can learn from them. The correlation was amazing. It was so easy to relate those examples to real life – both personal & professional.

3 things I am passionate about – 1st personal finance, 2nd reading, 3rd playing sports & bonus traveling.  And during the New Year I was fulfilling the bonus one. So I thought of sharing few learnings from my New Year trip to Uttrakhand & you can relate them to your personal finance. That is the reason we call Financial Plan a Road Map.

  • Plan for Trip – This is really so important. We plan for vacations well in advance – we check if we can spare time from work, will kids suffer school classes, who all in the family would accompany, what location, which hotel, budget etc. Do we put in same efforts for our financial life? Think!!

  • If you know you are traveling 500 kms, will it make sense that you check the milometer every km? This is just wasting time. Similarly monitor your investments at a gap and not on day to day basis.
  • Can you reach this long distance at speed of 40 Kmph? You can but it will take triple time and efforts. So maintain a speed which is rational. In personal finance also the speed of investment has to be constant and with less turbulence.
  • It is unlikely that the road will be smooth throughout the way – there will be pot holes, fog & traffic jams that you will not be able to avoid. Similarly in life there will be periods of uncertainty, unwanted events – keep time and liquidity on your side.
  • Can you cover such long distance with an auto? Auto driver will drive from 1 point to point 2 & then back to his stand. Equity trading is similar to this. Here you will never earn a penny and loose your hair due to hypertension.
  • Selection of vehicle is equally important. By train, ship or car? Similarly choosing an asset to invest is equally important. All assets have there pros and cons, hence you need to take your goals and risk appetite to decide the correct mix. Asset allocation is the key.
  • Can you drive 600 km yourself or you need some driver. If you love driving you can, but you will miss the time together with the fellow travelers and will not enjoy. Also you will exhaust yourself. Alternative can be to hire a driver. Similarly hiring an advisor for planning your finance can guide and make your journey pleasant. And why I am saying hiring is, when you pay adequately for services you have full right to demand quality. Pay you advisor so that he work for your goals.
  • If you realize that you are on wrong road, you seek help – so in personal finance never be afraid of taking help of a professional. The professional ensures that you choose the right goals for your life and he reviews that you are on a correct path towards your goal.
  • Negative surprises – When we reached our resort at Jim Corbett, we came to know that for New Year Party the charges would be extra, and worst was that the charges were almost 25% of the total cost of the trip. So take calculated decisions. Check before you leap when you are making investments as there can be hidden charges. Also put in an emergency fund to meet such surprises.
  • Accident can happen & they do happen, so take insurance. Lot of times it is not the question of “I” as “My” gets more important. Make sure you have all adequate insurance covers so that your family has full chances to reach the destination.
  • Avoid Credit cards – Best way to avoid debt is to actually not getting into it. But modern lifestyle and requirements force us to leverage. Manage debt and make sure debt is taken for a productive use and not for the depreciating assets.

  • Journey is equally important to destination. Life is short and so we have a full right to enjoy it. Do not wait to throw a party when you finally achieve something. Enjoy the small achievements, instead of waiting for the big day. Remember Alexander the Great, passed away before he could reach his country to celebrate after conquering the world.

30 COMMENTS

    • Thanks Rakesh,

      I am having one more article(based on analogy & learning) in mind – but not getting time to write.

      I think motivation from you & vikrant will compel me to work on that.

  1. Me too,superbly put, SATSANG, i know taken my mom few times. anyways… the post is really nice and very simple fro anyone to understand.

    Vikrant

    • Thanks Vikrant

      SATSANG means “being with good companions/people” – but I really enjoyed that.

  2. Hi Hemant,

    Manish recommended me to read the article, I enjoyed reading each word , each sentence…….in love with satsang

    nandish

    • Thanks Manshu – Finally someone noticed Pics.

      “Financial Planner is like a cameraman – he is not part of the picture but still contribute to make it look Good” 😉

  3. Hi Mr.Hemant,

    Thanks for an Excellent Article. I recommend this article to my friends also.
    And you kids are so cute.. may God Bless them, (I like kids very much)

    Mohan Kishor

  4. Hemant,

    I chanced upon your website through Jago. And i think you are doing as good a job as Manish is doing there. I have been into job since 2003 but never thought of managing my finances seriously, until i found Jago. I wonder what my bank balance would have been, had i started earlier!! Going forward, I’ll try to get best of both worlds by going through both the sites. Keep up the good work.

  5. Dear All,

    I have an experience of 12 years in the field of Finance but unforunately till Feb 2009 I didn’t save not a single penny for anything. I’m married and having two kids.

    Now I started to invest the money for the future requirements.

    If anybody having any suggestion for me they are all most welcome.

    Thanks & Regards,

    Puri.

    • Hi Divakar,

      I think its not query – its actually a confession or if others are reading a big lesson for them too.

      I hope with such type of long experience you must be earning good – go & hire some financial planner who can guide you. And even before investment buy term plan.

  6. Hi Hemant
    I am surprised, even after doing so much of writing you have not mentioned writing as your passion.As per me it should be your number one passion.You truely have a remarkable knack of beautifully explaining financial matters by comparing them to real life situations in very simple manner which can be understood easily by people of average intelligence.
    I have two things in common with you.Like you I am also very passionate about reading and personal finance.However, gardening and photography get higher priority by me.Yes, because of my passion for photography I have also noticed your photograph.A perfect family picture !

      • Hi Hemant
        If frustration has made you so creative I wonder what passion would have done. I admit personal finance is a very dull thing. But you have to be creative to make this boring subject interesting. Unfortunately most other PF columnists write dull and boring things.

  7. Hi Hemant,

    Thanks for letting me know about this article. Its very informative. I agree with you Anil…. Hemant explains about things in such a simplified manner that even a new comer can grasp it very quickly. One cannot serve the Country by having knowledge but one can serve the Country by spreading knowledge which is what Hemant does it very well.

  8. the brilliance of this article is that.. financial planning is explained through a simple example of family vacation. this is a must read for layman like me

    • Hi wasim,

      True hemant ji is really doing well & his articles are really appreciable …

      hope he continues like this and we will be blessed with all upcoming articles of yours..

  9. WOW, MR.Hemant,
    i have read this article only now. really cool one. how do you correlate all things towards FP.
    Really amazing. 95 articles in 2011. my god. you are doing a great community service my dear friend. its sort of litrecy campaign you are running.
    i loved your family pic. you son/daughter you are carrying is really cute.
    have a wondeerful year ahead.
    rajesh

  10. Hi Hemant,
    Thanks for your contribution in making the pepole financially literate! More than anything else, I think, financial literacy is the most imporatnt one to make ourself independant.
    Happy independence day to all the followers of TFL!

  11. Thanks Hemantji……..good to read your inputs…….wants to know how much percentage one should save/ invest from his salary ……..just reading the corelation i was just looking at photo of Mahabharata in a my house with Lord krishna ridding a chariot with Arjuna & it was pulled by 4 horses………..is it the same way we need to have investment in different buckets to get us to our investment goals …………again i need to know what are those…how much percentage.

  12. No doubt, the pics are as beautiful as your thinking and way of explaining. But if i go in depth of the 2nd pics in financial terms, i had noticed each individual is near to each tree which indicates your own word that every individual needs and goal in terms of financial are unique in nature which arises the need of personal financial expert who will aid individual to achieve his/her goal in a different manner as per the requirement (i.e responsibility, risk appetite, expenditure & income).

    Thank you for inducing one more chapter in mine life which indicates that if explained with simplicity the complex things can be easily make understood.

    Thanks again for making us financial pro active

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