Friday, September 20, 2013

Investing in Investments

            Even with the turmoil in the Mindanao area and amidst the Pork Barrel Scandal, the Philippines remains to be the brightest spot in the Asian and World market spotlight in investments. We are doing so good that foreigners invests in our country. However, how come, we, the Filipinos, don’t give a crap?
            One of the primary reasons why we are not investment savvy is the fact that when we were younger, we were groomed to save, not to invest. Let’s have simple comparisons between saving and investing:

Short term (emergency fund, grocery expenses, bill payments, etc.) goals you will accomplish within five (5) years necessitates that the money should fall in this pot.
Long term (retirement planning, education funding, setting aside for a business capital, down payment for a home) goals you aspire to obtain five (5) years and beyond  must be invested to fully enjoy the maximized returns necessary to accomplish the intended amount needed in the future.
Savings and deposit accounts, time deposits, special savings accounts, unit-investment trust funds
Mutual Funds, Stocks, Investment-linked Insurance, Whole Life/Limited Pay Traditional Insurance
Interest Rates
Very, very, low; ranging from .025% - 1.5/1.75% PER YEAR, less 20% withholding tax will get you nowhere if you intend to grow your funds for a future use.
Offers a potentially high return, ranging from as low (for traditional insurance policies) 4.40% per year or a mutable percentage for stocks, mutual funds and investment-linked insurance policies which can allow appreciation of your funds for its intended purpose in the long run to accumulate more than the capital you have set aside.
Easily accessed; withdrawing over and over again will always nail you back to the starting line, failing to move forward.
Meticulous process of fund withdrawal and penalization for accessing it early will discipline you set aside the given amount for the intention it was supposed to fulfill in the future.

            The beauty of saving is its ability to offer a haven for your short-term needs and expenses. Simply, you are safekeeping your money for a possible purpose it may be necessitated immediately. However, setting aside EVERYTHING in the bank will get you nowhere. We must learn to invest excess funds beyond what we normally save in order to make the hard-earned money we worked hard for work for us as hard as we worked hard for it so we can grow our finances for a future purpose we wish to be doable in the future. With reputable financial institutions, the money you earn can be grown to let you earn more so it can perform what it’s supposed to be utilized for in the future. We financial advisors can help you with it by designing a financial plan tailor-fit to your needs. Remember, a healthy financial state is the 70-10-10-10 rule: 70% goes to expenses, 10% goes individually to your savings, investments, and charitable causes or a pakimkim for our loved ones. Assuming your earn 10,000/month, your basic financial breakdown should look like:

70% = 7,000.00
10% = 1,000.00
10% = 1,000.00
10% = 1,000.00

            You'd better think and seek professional financial advice if you are far from the LEAST required of you. Maybe you have too much debts. Maybe you spend more that what you earn. Maybe you need to reconstruct your budget to do so; how about 80-10-5-5 or perhaps 90-5-4-1? Kung gusto, madaming paraan, kung ayaw, lahat dinadahilan. Start saving and investing early, consistently, and correctly by partnering with the right financial institutions to enjoy the fruits of your labor and accomplish your dreams and aspirations for the future.

For any questions, don’t hesitate to write comments below. I’d be more than happy to assist you with financial planning. You can PM me so we can talk about it in detail.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Dealing with “Nega” Stars

            There you are one day so happy and gay in the morning when suddenly, you meet someone who soaked up all the misfortunes in the world: the “Nega” stars. They emanate that bad vibes aura and worse comes to worse, failure to handle that negativism would end you up like them as well! When getting influenced by any “Nega” stars or when you face one, maybe we can consider the following tips:

1.      Empathize but do not sympathize
2.       Counter negativism with positivism
3.      Offer choices; do not add oil to the fire
4.      Show you care
5.      In case of contamination, talk to someone with a positive outlook in life

-          Empathize but do not sympathize:
Before crying along with the troubles of the “Nega” stars or just before you get angry at the bad vibes they bring; try to put yourself in their situation rather than snubbing or fighting with them. If you’re in their shoes, what would you do to prevent stressing yourself out? Try to learn from their experiences so you can manage your own when the same situation hits you rather than simply feeling pity towards them and criticizing them. Remember, they do not need a shoulder to cry on; they need a handful of support so they can go on with their lives.

-          Counter negativism with positivism:
Before you say, “Oo nga eh, malas talaga ako,” I’m no good, or I’m going nowhere, try displacing these negative thoughts to constructive motivations. Maybe you weren’t able to close that sale because you’re meant for something bigger. Maybe you weren’t able to land that job because you are meant for a better opportunity. There’s always a reason behind everything. Just like my favorite verse in 1 Corinthians 10-13, No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.

-          Offer choices; do not add oil to the fire:
If you happen to meet a “Nega” star, the last thing they would want to hear from you are the following: “Oo nga malas ka talaga; sayang hindi mo nakuha; Ikaw kasi hindi mo ginalingan; Ang tanga-tanga mo kasi; Mahina ka kasi; Hindi mo kaya ‘yan.” They are already sinking deep in depression and my goodness; you’re stepping on them further! If you do not have anything good to say; it’s best to just keep silent, listen to what they have to say and think of an encouraging AND REALISTIC way of counseling them. Offer them simple steps or solutions to attend to their problems; do not mandate them on what they are supposed to do. Their minds are only preoccupied with problems but that doesn’t mean that they are helpless. They will only feel worse if you make them feel useless and not able to handle the situation they are in.

-          Show you care:
Like what was stated earlier, make them feel that you are willing to listen to them if you are not able to address their concern. It would only make them feel worse if you’re playing Candy Crush while they are sharing their negativism to you. Negativism can be minimized by making them lessen their burden thru sharing it with you; after all, they need that support now.

-          In case of contamination, talk to someone with a positive outlook in life
There will come a time that you will become a “Nega” star as well, no matter how well you manage problems or no matter how positive your outlook in life may be. To address this concern, try avoiding the means of conversing with another “Nega” star; negative plus negative would only blow things in exponential proportions thus making it worse. Try talking to someone whom you know can pump up positive thoughts and encouraging ideas. Remember, negative plus positive will lessen it and will make things better in the long run.

            No man is an island. That’s why let’s offer a helping hand for those who felt that their lives is so far away from the happy days under the sun.


For any questions, don’t hesitate to write comments below. I’d be more than happy to assist you with financial planning. You can PM me so we can talk about it in detail.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Budgeting 101 for Freelancers

            One of the major advantages of being a freelancer is the flexibility of your time and the ability to control your cash flow. However, getting yourself caught off-guard with the volatility or seasonality of your freelance job may nail you in financial constraints, especially if you are fending for a family or a loved one. Remember, working freelance deprives you of the fixed income you get as an employee. With this in mind, being financially responsible with our finances is a must. Maybe we can consider the following:

1.      Build your Emergency Fund, ASAP
2.      Stay away from debts
3.      Always have a back-up plan
4.      Juggle your work accordingly
5.      Hone your craft
6.      Live below your means
7.      Splice a small percent of your income to have savings and investments
8.      Get covered

-          Build your Emergency Fund, ASAP:
Granted that your nature of work is very unstable (not unless you’re always in-demand 24/7 but still I’d recommend this), having a tangible fund to utilize during the “rainy days” would be a great idea. According to financial authorities, a healthy emergency fund is 3-6x your income safely kept aside in the bank and accessed ONLY DURING EMERGENCIES. Hence, the term emergency fund.

-          Stay away from debts:
The last thing you would want in your life is sinking well below your financial means with the aggravation of debts. If you can, stay away from scratching your credit cards every now and then. If you do, pay it completely and on time. Though some credit cards can offer cash-lending facilities with minimal interest rates which you could utilize during emergencies, you better leave that only for the harshest scenarios.

-          Always have a back-up plan:
This provides a plan B for the uncertainties of your work. If your income is not going to get you far for the month, you better have something else to utilize for the meantime to help augment your shortfalls. Link with other people. Market yourself so people can recommend you. Make use of your other skills effectively. Daig ang magaling ng maabilidad.

-          Juggle your work accordingly:
Get enough sleep. Rest even now and then. Stress is always present whether you are employed or freelancing. Take vitamins and eat well (but not extravagantly). The last thing you want is getting sick for this will definitely impale your wallet big-time.

-          Hone your craft:
Treat your freelance work as your business. Invest on it by enriching yourself with the latest trends and innovations in your craft. Competition is rising and you are not the only one doing your freelance work. Set yourself apart from the mediocre ones, be the best you can be. You wouldn’t run out of financial opportunities if the people know you’re the best guy out there for the business.

-          Live below your means:
Learn to discern what you want and what you need. Do not get fascinated with the latest “in’s” so easily. It’s necessary to salvage every little penny you earn. You wouldn’t know when you’re going to need the extra centavo. Rather than buying something you do not need today, why not set it aside for savings or investments? That can be more beneficial in the future rather than the new IPhones and IPads you just bought because of the spurt of the moment.

-          Splice a small percent of your income to have savings and investments:
Aside from financing your emergency fund, you should at least put in a small portion of your income to savings and investments. This will give you a compelling reason to work hard and smart. Set aside short-term expenses (grocery funds, bill payments, rent, mortgage, play money, etc.) in your savings account. However, if you dream of buying a car, a house, aiming for a business capital, setting aside your retirement fund or establishing the future budget of your child’s education, you’re better off with investments such as mutual funds, stocks, and investment-linked insurances. They will make your money work harder for you. Ideally, you should set aside AT LEAST 10% of your income for savings and 10% of your income for investments. Make this a commitment; no one else will benefit from this but you. If you think you can’t; think of a reason why you can and why you should. Maybe you can decrease unnecessary expenses (cellphone load, dining out, shopping, travelling, etc.). Maybe you can walk home sometimes. Maybe you can postpone buying that new cellphone unit.  Kung gusto madaming paraan; kung ayaw maraming dahilan.

-          Get Covered:
Make sure your PhilHealth is up-to-date. If you can afford to have a health card without compromising your budget, don’t hesitate in doing so. However, the most important foundation of any financial plan is establishing it with life insurance. You get insurance not because you will die but because someone else will be left behind to live. This will make sure that the dreams and aspirations you have for your family and loved ones wouldn’t get buried six-feet under if something were to happen to the breadwinner, the dream maker: YOU. Pay it annually or as frequently as possible; you’ll never know when you may suffer financially and be unable to pay it on time. Take note, your insurance policies provides a fund value or a cash value as time goes by, adding another “purse” to access in the event of needing money for life’s unexpected expenses. With all the benefits you can get by getting covered and on top of your PhilHealth or health cards, you’re fortifying your financial shields to make sure you wouldn’t devastate everything you have worked hard for during the tough times.


For any questions, don’t hesitate to write comments below. I’d be more than happy to assist you with financial planning. You can PM me so we can talk about it in detail. =D

Sunday, September 15, 2013

What in the World is This All About?

Hello! The purpose of this blog is to serve as a conduit for my brain cells when it thinks of something odd, interesting, nice, beautiful, ugly, inspirational, depressing or motivational in form. However, I may focus on the following:

1. Personal Financial Planning
2. Personal Struggles ( Sometimes :p)
3. Sociopolitical Issues
4. My Personal Financial Roadmap Progress
5. Miscellaneous Topics about Life, Finances and Love, lol :D

Happy Reading!