The past 3 weeks have been busy time for me. Was at KL one whole week – giving a talk on REIT investing; also meeting people whom I wouldn’t have met otherwise if it weren’t for HowToFinanceMoney.com and if I wasn’t doing what I am doing now. People from different walks of life – mostly more senior than myself – the likes of very successful doctors in private practice, working professionals, a pharmacist who is working with the Customs department (what?), a unassuming, financially free ex banker who’s driving a Vios fetching me to breakfast in SS2 (and inviting me to guest stay at 2400 sqf “hanging humble abode” the next time I am in KL) , co-owner of this very popular Home Made Cup Cakes in Penang – EvadisCakes. Sorry if I couldn’t accommodate all other requests to meet yet, I’ll make it a point to do so next time.
Now while I do enjoy the technicals of personal finance, it is sometimes the opportunity to meet with people that made me enjoy what I am doing. You come to realize that the more you learn from people, the more you actually don’t know. And sometimes, you realized, even with what I know and what I have, I cannot solve everyone’s problems, especially if it’s mindset related.
The funny thing is that when I did ask them about their background and financial situations, I got asked a lot nowadays – “Is our conversation going into your blog?”
Of course Not- at least, not the P&C stuff. Especially if you are a client.
However, the category of clients that resonates with me the most are married couples and families – one who are usually more responsible than his/her other half when it comes to money management. But you see a lot of scenarios where husband and wife have differing opinion on money. Normally one is very investment-centric while the others don’t really believe in long term planning. There are indeed people who believe in Live in the Present – it’s not wrong because I realize you can’t just force the need for financial freedom down their throat. I tried, but I realize everyone has their own free will, so to speak. But I’d approach this from different angle instead – even if financial freedom is not important for your good self, think about your family. Think of your spouse, your children – don’t you want the best for them? Things don’t just affect ourselves, but more often than not, people closest to us.
I’ve also heard people narrated to me on getting into huge debt which takes years to settle. Debt incurred by most newly weds on their lavish wedding, house renovation and arrival of baby all at one shot! Negative cash flows for years until a wake up call jolted them up.
I recall this from a blogger at Singapore, AK71 –
“All the romantic notions of a perfect marriage, a spacious home and lovely kids have to be built on rock solid finances, especially in a city like Singapore which has very high cost of living. This is the hard truth.
We have heard of marriage counselling for couples who have serious differences. However, the Catholic Church, I know, provides pre-marriage counselling for would be couples as well. This is a very good idea, I feel. However, that is probably only on an emotional and religious level.
I am just blessed my wife shares the same mindset – on frugality, detachment with material possession and long term savings + investing.
Incidentally, if you want to know how my wife and I to incur zero debt and net positive cash flow post wedding dinner, drop me a mail 🙂