A year ago I decided to become the “CFO of my personal economy” after being a self-confessed spendthrift. Here’s some background:
We all have that friend that always looks good but never has any money to do anything. And we also have that friend that secretly has a lot of money but always says no to your invites for dinner or clubbing because they “can’t afford it”. I wish I could say I was the latter – that friend who always made practical purchases and stuck to their budget- but unfortunately I was the former. I was that friend, that spent all her money on “stuff”. Budget? *pfft* I didn’t even know what that was!
Two years ago I spent majority of the first paycheck I earned during my summer internship on a pair of Alexander Wang Aminata shoes I saw Rihanna wearing. *yikes* The next paycheck was spent on a pair of Christian Louboutin Pigalle Plato 120mm heels. It was quickly becoming a trend.
In January 2015, I made a decision to be more serious with my finances after I racked up close to $2,000 in credit card debt. I decided that I didn’t want to be one of those people who just looked good but had no money in their bank account – With a designer wallet worth more than their life savings. I wanted to look good AND also increase my net worth.
Throughout my journey to financial freedom, I have learnt a thing or two about personal finance and investing by reading scores of book, visiting several personal finance blogs and practicing with my own hard earned money. Now, I am finally growing my net worth.
However, this has not come easy. At first I was overwhelmed with all the information and quickly noticed that majority of the books were not tailored to the average young person like myself. I literally had to use dictionaries and online sources such as Investopedia, to understand the concepts in the books and blogs I read. This made me lose interest because there was just so much to know and I did not know how to start investing. I do not believe young people have to go through what I went through in order to have a clear view of their finances.
This is why I created Investment Conversations. Investment Conversations aims to demystify personal finance for millennials. It will break down money and financial jargon in plain English.
Investment Conversations will teach you how to take charge of your finances, and accomplish your financial goals, while having fun! It does not preach excessive frugality, but planned spending – It encourages you to enjoy your hard earned money in a practical manner, because life is way too short.
My Financial Profile
-I have no student debt
-I have no credit card debt
-I have savings and investments in high interest savings accounts as well as capital markets through index mutual funds*. This means that I get a higher return each year (usually) than just sticking my savings in regular bank savings account. [I look forward to investing in individual company stocks this year].
“How many millionaires do you know who have become wealthy by investing in savings accounts? I rest my case.” – Robert G. Alle
*Note: Don’t worry if you do not know what this term means, it will be explained in subsequent articles.
-I am a long term investor, who is interested in amassing wealth in the long term. I am not a trader, who invests or buys and sells securities for short-term benefits. This is because in the short-term, investments in the stock market are more volatile, plus it takes a lot of time and dedication to make sure you buy and sell at the exact right time. As a trader; a minute delay could result in a huge loss. And ain’t nobody got time for that…
“If you are not willing to own a stock for 10 years, do not even think about owning it for 10 minutes.” – Warren Buffet
I did not do all this on my own: For example, my lack of student debt was as a result of the close to $25,000 in scholarships I received while in university, and my parents who were kind enough to foot the rest of my university tuition. So although some people are not as lucky to get help (scholarships or otherwise) paying off their student debt; careful budgeting and planning makes this easier!
This blog documents my journey into a life of responsible spending and financial independence. I hope you can stick around, and learn a thing or two from my mistakes and successes! I do not claim to know everything and I want to learn from my readers. Please ask me questions, and share feedback in the comment section or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, don’t forget to subscribe, if you like what you see!