Thursday, May 23, 2013

Suze Orman on ANC



Takeaways from Suze Orman's interview:

  1. It's easy to pay off credit card debt, the real question is why did you get into debt in the first place.
  2. Normally, when you feel less than, you spend more than. Don't spend money you don't have to impress people you don't even know or like girlfriend!
  3. Know the difference between a need and a want. Before buying anything, ask yourself if this is a need or a want, if it's a want, walk away.
  4. If you don't have enough money to pay your daily necessities, then you shouldn't even think of investing yet. Find a way to make more money or to spend less. That could mean getting a second job or freelancing or doing with less, whatever it takes, just do it.
There are so much more nuggets of everyday wisdom in the interview so do take the time to watch it in its entirety.

I love you Suze! You're my hero.

Suze Orman on ANC



Takeaways from Suze Orman's interview:

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Suze Says

This simple rule from Suze Orman pretty much sums up how I want to live my life: Live below your means but within your needs, and get as much joy out of saving as you do spending. 

The living below your means part is de riguer in any personal finance discussion, but the "within your needs" aspect is something that got me thinking. There is a marked difference between a "need" and a "want", and anyone who can't tell one from the other is probably deeply mired in debt because of it. But I believe that treating yourself to a little piece of luxury every now and then can likewise be categorized as a need, otherwise, you'll only be existing and not living.

I think that little luxuries can be seen as soul food, it might not be something that your corporeal self needs to survive, but they do keep your spirit going, giving you inspiration when you need it.

Am I making any sense? Or am I just justifying my planned purchase of a new pair of Havaianas slippers when I still have a perfectly serviceable pair?

Anyhoo, as always Suze Orman hit it right out of the ballpark when she urged Filipinos to save more and to start investing. So while I will buy a new pair of Havaianas slippers as a replacement to my 5 year old (!!) pair, I will forego those Goose Station coupons since not only do I need to lose my pregnancy paunch stat, I can also think of so many uses for the Php3,000 that those 2 coupons will cost us. Between a Php700 and Php3,000 luxury, I think I'm better off with the former.

Alright, will stop rambling now. I'm just waiting for the baby to wake up so I can give him his bath. Wake up babycakes!

Suze Says

This simple rule from Suze Orman pretty much sums up how I want to live my life: Live below your means but within your needs, and get as much joy out of saving as you do spending. 

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Introductions



The reason for my absence from the blogosphere is that tiny guy up there.


Meet my son :)


Introductions


The reason for my absence from the blogosphere is that tiny guy up there.

Meet my son :)

Monday, May 13, 2013

Phrase to Save



Aside from becoming full-fledged parents any time soon, we also have big plans for our little abode this year. Those plans involve buying the next door unit from my brother and then fixing it up to create more space for our growing family.

I know the plan by heart, but I still find myself being not as responsible as I should with spending money (case in point, spending for last night's pizza dinner for the fambam because it makes me happy to be around my nieces and nephews and pizza makes them happy, so... :p). This article from Learnvest thus pressed all the right buttons and made me come up with my own Phrase to Save.

To date, the budget for the renovation is about Php150,000 to Php175,000 and that includes breaking down a piece of the wall to join the 2 units (Php25,000), having a new kitchen area with island set up (Php50,000?), buying a new oven/ gas range (Php30,000?) and installing 2 sets of storage areas (bookshelf and cabinet). 

Our Phrase to Save comes in during our daily life, and pretty much compels us to rethink our purchase to see if it is more important than our planned renovation, because every purchase made will inevitably be a step back from our renovation goal.

How do you wrap your head around a number that big when you’re thinking about your daily expenses? Is my $20 savings at the grocery store really going to impact a number that big? It doesn’t seem likely. And because of that disconnect it was hard to see how our daily activities impacted our long-term dream. It wasn’t until we made the connection about comparing what we wanted to do on a day in our dream life to what we were currently spending that it finally clicked.
 Our Phrase to Save will basically go like this: "Is eating out at our favorite Italian restaurant worth more than adding to our kitchen unit budget?"

Or it can also go: "Do I need this new pair of shoes enough to take it out of my floor to ceiling bookshelf budget?"

Something like that.

So there, having a set goal will hopefully make us accountable for our every financial action and limit mindless spending.

Phrase to Save



Aside from becoming full-fledged parents any time soon, we also have big plans for our little abode this year. Those plans involve buying the next door unit from my brother and then fixing it up to create more space for our growing family.

I know the plan by heart, but I still find myself being not as responsible as I should with spending money (case in point, spending for last night's pizza dinner for the fambam because it makes me happy to be around my nieces and nephews and pizza makes them happy, so... :p). This article from Learnvest thus pressed all the right buttons and made me come up with my own Phrase to Save.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Suze Orman Back in Manila!


I love, love, love Suze Orman! In fact, it was her Ask Suze show that began my journey towards learning more about and taking control of my personal finances. 

 I remember channel surfing and seeing this woman taking a call about whether or not it was a wise decision for this pregnant lady to buy an orthopedic mattress. The woman, who turned out to be Suze, went over the lady's numbers and concluded that she had way too much debt, did not have enough liquid savings and was already into her 8th month of pregnancy so not only could she not afford the mattress, she also didn't need it anymore, since she used her pregnancy as an excuse to justify purchasing the mattress. I was hooked.

Suze Orman's coming back to Manila next week thanks to BPI! I would love to go but (1) that's my 40th week and would probably be up to my elbows tending to Bean by then and (2) I'm not invited. You can actually try to score invites by sending an email to BPI, but I don't think that will guarantee a seat since I'm sure tons of people would love to go. I left the newspaper ad in my parents' room and I'm too lazy to waddle my way over there to get it. I promise to update this post in the morning. (Update: I couldn't find the newspaper with the ad anymore. Sorry!)

Anyway, I hope that they show her talk on TV or online. I love you Suze!


P.S.
Some Suze trivia. Those gold earrings she has on are her only pair of earrings and she used one purse for years before her girlfriend took pity on it and bought her a new one.

Suze Orman Back in Manila!


I love, love, love Suze Orman! In fact, it was her Ask Suze show that began my journey towards learning more about and taking control of my personal finances. 

Sunday, May 5, 2013

May 2013 Budget & Financial Goals


In my last post I wondered whether or not to account for every single peso that we spent on every month. After some thinking, I decided against it (too tedious!) and just included the expenses that tend to vary every month (i.e. electricity, groceries, eating out etc), and not the fixed expenses. And with that basic ground rule, I also decided not to include the amount I allot to savings (house improvement and emergency funds) and investments (stocks, insurance and mutual funds) in my chart since they likewise don't change every month. I am including my PAG-IBIG mortgage payment under debts though, since I want to pay it off ASAP and intend to pay off more than the minimum every month and have the excess applied to the principal.

This month, our biggest expense will be my hospital bill for bringing Bean into this world. With my benefits from Philhealth and being a doctor's kid, my mom said to prepare around Php10,000 but I'm allotting Php15,000 for good measure.

After I give birth, we'll be moving in my parents' house for about a month and so some of our expenses will go down, but the hubs and I intend to share in their household expenses nonetheless. No to freeloaders!

This month's goals are as follows:
  • Give birth :)
  • Breastfeed
  • Use cloth diapers
  • Find a stay-out nanny for when we go back to the condo in June
  • Open a savings account for our house renovation fund
  • Go back to my original monthly investing budget
Alright, I now have my ducks in a row. Let's go May!

May 2013 Budget & Financial Goals


In my last post I wondered whether or not to account for every single peso that we spent on every month. After some thinking, I decided against it (too tedious!) and just included the expenses that tend to vary every month (i.e. electricity, groceries, eating out etc), and not the fixed expenses. And with that basic ground rule, I also decided not to include the amount I allot to savings (house improvement and emergency funds) and investments (stocks, insurance and mutual funds) in my chart since they likewise don't change every month. I am including my PAG-IBIG mortgage payment under debts though, since I want to pay it off ASAP and intend to pay off more than the minimum every month and have the excess applied to the principal.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Round-up: April 2013 Budget & Money Goals

Three things happened last April that shaped that month's budget: (1) I celebrated my birthday / baby shower; (2) I got slapped with a Php500 penalty when my savings account dipped below the average daily balance (ADB); and (3) the bonuses I was relying on were delayed.

The birthday accounted for the extra groceries, in fact I even cheated a bit and didn't include the other party expenses (ooops!) because I didn't create a category for them in the original budget.

Which now brings me to how I set up the budget plan. I'm deciding if I should also include all our utilities or to at least lump the fixed ones in one category, instead of just accounting for our electricity consumption. And should I include EVERYTHING we spent on for the month? Or maybe that's already too overreaching? Hmmm....I'll have to put on my thinking cap for this.

I was counting on the bonuses to help me kickstart our house renovation funds and resume socking money in our emergency funds. But they only came yesterday, so our savings will begin this month. Promise.

Once again, we went above our restaurant budget. With Bean's birth this month, I doubt we'll be able to eat out as often, so maybe we'll finally be able to stay within budget this month. Crossing fingers.

Speaking of giving birth, my mom's my OB and the unwritten doctor's code says that doctors' kids get all sorts of ridiculous discounts. According to my mom we should prepare around Php10,000 for the hospital fees, a pittance when compared to the usual Php50,000 to Php60,000 for normal deliveries in most hospitals. Yay mom!

I hope that in the next few days I'll have someone new to introduce to all of you :)

Round-up: April 2013 Budget & Money Goals

Three things happened last April that shaped that month's budget: (1) I celebrated my birthday / baby shower; (2) I got slapped with a Php500 penalty when my savings account dipped below the average daily balance (ADB); and (3) the bonuses I was relying on were delayed.