Suspension of Disbelief

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Tips from experts on how to achieve financial stability

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VERA Files and Yahoo Philippines | 22 January 2014



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In life, it takes more than just talent and skill to succeed.

As important as physical and emotional health is financial stability.

ABS-CBN News Channel’s, On The Money (airs on ABS-CBN News Channel every day at 3:30pm ) recently gathered a group of financial planners to share their expertise in managing personal finances.

Online definition of personal financial planning is “a process of determining an individual’s financial goals, purposes in life and life’s priorities, and after considering his resources, risk profile and current lifestyle, to detail a balanced and realistic plan to meet those goals.”

Registered financial planner Alvin Tabañag advises to start with the children. It’s like hitting two birds with one stone because teaching children about managing their money properly will also force parents to be also more responsible when it comes to their finances.

“Even if you can afford it as a parent, do not give in to their every demand. If it’s something that they can really live without, then it’s not important, then do not give it right away. You can ask your children to save for it and just wait, instead of just buying on impulse. It’s a life lesson kids should learn,” Tabañag said.

Book author Marvin Germo, who is also a registered financial planner came up with an acronym for his personal finance tip: S.T.O.C.K.S.

Spending on a budgetGermo said that setting a budget before you spend on something can help you control your finances.

Throwback. Don’t be ashamed to recycle the gifts that were given to you, especially if it will not be useful for you.

Opportunities. Take any and all opportunities that will come your way because it’s always a way to increase your cash flow.

Cash is king. Cash gives you the position to invest and even save you in times of emergencies.

Knock off debt. Debt is a big killer. It’s always better to pay off your debt in full before you save, invest or go into anything else.

Start planning. Start out your year, 2014, with a goal. You need to put a name to every peso; is it for your retirement, is it for your investment, is it for you?

Another registered financial planner, Rienzie Biolena, stressed the importance of investing in one’s self.

“It’s the most overlooked, in terms of investments,” Biolena said adding that, “When you invest in yourself, you increase your knowledge, your capability, to earn and expand your resources, and also, you will be able to manage your assets properly.”

Attending seminars and conferences, reading personal finance books, searching the web, and watching personal finance programs are examples of investing in one’s self, Biolena said.

“Nowadays, people are spending like 30-40,000 for a gadget. My question for them is, how much are they spending on themselves to develop themselves?” Biolena asked.

Seasoned financial planner and ANC’s On The Money resident financial advisor, Salve Duplito, stressed the importance of a personal financial plan.

Duplito said making a financial plan is one of the best things you can do for yourself. “It doesn’t have to be all these very highfaluting financial plans. Just make sure all the details are there; your investment goals, your goals for yourselves, what you will do from now until that time when you need to retire, etc.,” she explained.

Duplito also said that having a financial plan helps you track your expenses and keeps you focused. Without a plan, it’s easy to get sidetracked by all the unnecessary things one wants to buy.

“Financial planning involves cash management, investment planning and estate planning. It should start with your goals and steps (created by you) to help you reach your goals,” Duplito said.




(The author is executive producer of “On The Money.” VERA Files is put out by veteran journalists taking a deeper look at current issues. Vera is Latin for “true.”


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