As we get into the second quarter of 2021, life seems to have come full circle, as they say, and we seem to be well into a 2.0 version of last year. But just a few weeks back, the memories of 2020 and the troubles wrought by the pandemic seemed distant and fading. Life had more or less returned to normalcy in most parts, and people seemed to be mingling as though social distancing was a bad dream.
While the memories of last year seem short-lived, I have a different view on this – keeping the experiences of the last 12 months alive in our memories and better still, taking actionable insights from it to prepare for the future, may be one way of being safer and more secure in a future increasingly turbulent and uncertain. So, as we go into a vicious relapse, it may be prudent to quickly assess how each one of us fared during those stressful times.
Most of you would have heard of a “Stress Test”. In personal health, a stress test assesses the state of your overall fitness and particularly your heart. Simply put, a stress test simulates the health and strength of any system that you wish to test, through appropriately designed procedures. Similarly, one can design a stress test to check how prepared one is financially to endure a financial crisis, like what happened in the last few quarters.
Answering this simple six question test below will be a rudimentary yet effective way to check how healthy your personal finances are. Our latest article, published on Money9.
Our behaviors towards money and the money decisions that we make at various junctures in our life are influenced by our experiences at a formative level, right from childhood.
Am sure that this comes as no surprise, after all, money experiences are also a part of the various influences that form us through our life. Where I see a bit of a twist is that while my family was a fairly orthodox one, the women in the family were curiously still quite involved, and to some extent, even dominant, in some of the money decisions that were taken.
How do you plan for your financial well-being? Are the priorities the same for everyone or does it differ depending on your unique circumstances? In our experience over the years, we have noticed that a one-size-fits-all approach does not work when it comes to your finances.
When it comes to single women specially, their circumstances are different and to an extent unique, driven by not just their needs but also the prevailing laws, and therefore need to pay attention to the following.
The much-awaited festive season comes to an end and it has managed to rekindle hope and bring a lot of joy despite the restraints this year. Diwali has always been the most exciting time of the year for me and preparations for the festival start much in advance every year.
The customary “Diwali cleaning” is something I usually delegate to the willing and efficient staff and am usually pleased with the result of a superficially extra-clean house for a few weeks. This year, I decided to do a lot of the customary cleaning myself and I was surprised to take away some financial lessons from this exercise.
Read our latest article, published on Moneycontrol.
Have you ever wondered, when you are planning for your future, why certain assets evoke so much loyalty and attachment? Come to think of it, you may have invested in it dispassionately in pursuit of good returns but somewhere along the way it has acquired a persona of its own.
Real estate and gold are two such assets which have a huge emotional connect. Gold is understandable, as in our culture, if you are selling physical gold, people assume that you have hit really hard times and it is never easy to part with physical gold. Other forms of gold like Gold ETFs etc. luckily are easier to deal with.
But what about real estate? I cannot think of too many people putting their life savings into a financial asset and staying the course despite hiccups and abysmal returns. Why then is real estate treated differently?
Read our latest article, published on Moneycontrol
Have you ever had conflicting emotions regarding the same issue? It seems to happen quite often to me when I look at the ways in which senior citizens handle their money. At times I feel, I wish I could be as well planned and involved with my own finances. At other times I roll my eyes and make myself a promise never to end up like them when I grow older. I guess its only natural that there are somethings which you envy and some which you absolutely detest and don’t want to emulate ever.
This my attempt to list down 3 things I would love to work on with the older generation as an inspiration and 3 things I would want to do differently than them for sure.
Pl read our latest article, published on Moneycontrol
For most people, the last few months has been a never-before experience. Whether it is about finding out how secure is your financial position in this crisis, or about understanding what is really important for you versus isn’t, or about looking for new opportunities in an otherwise generally hopeless time, it has been a period of discovery.
For me, this period has reiterated a few money lessons which I have learnt and personally tried to follow over the last few years. If anything, this crisis has confirmed to me that the path towards financial, in fact, overall well-being lies along successfully practicing these lessons.
Read about them in our latest article, published on Moneycontrol.
I have interacted with many women who at some point in their career want to stop and take stock of where they are headed. These are not decisions that people take overnight, they are thoughts which stay seeded in your mind and take lot of time to grow enough to make you take action. The reasons for the same may be varied, and so will the journey, but there is always merit in reading how someone else’s journey unfolded. It may make your ride a little smoother and disappointments lesser.
A few years back I went through a similar dilemma. Having done something similar a few years back, I think that if my journey could help some get solace or pave the way for realistic expectations, this is a story which is worth telling. On hindsight, these are my learnings.
Please read our latest article, published on Moneycontrol.
A few months back, I met a friend of mine who was down from the US on a holiday. This is someone who had done quite well for himself over the last nearly 20 years in the US, and has built a fairly large investment portfolio. As part of it, he has also successfully built a real estate portfolio over the years in the US. Discussions veered towards that, and he said something that made me sit up.
His words were “I love Leverage”.
The use of the word “Leverage” instead of “Debt” somehow made all the difference for me to look at it in a new light. Yes, loans are bad, and one should be debt-free in one’s pursuit of financial well-being. That said, I have since also realized that Debt is not as one-dimensional as one thinks it is.
Coming back to the original question, let’s look at Debt differently and build some simple rules around it, which can be generally followed, towards one’s financial well-being.
Read our latest article below, published on Moneycontrol.
Financial planning has different connotations to different people. To us who have been interacting and partnering with people in their pursuit of financial well-being, it means living a fulfilling now while planning to sustain the same lifestyle throughout your life.
In our numerous interactions with people, we have noticed many kinds. A few are balanced in their need to live a good life today as well as save for the future. Some are very involved in the now, and live an indulgent life-style with no worries of tomorrow. While some are constantly worrying about the future, so much so that they compromise on even little things which bring them great joy. We are going to discuss this last category since we have noticed some common traits which distinguish them and strongly believe a different approach can significantly change their lives.
Read on more in our latest article below, published on Moneycontrol.