The good and evil about your money 

If you have a regular income, your habit of saving money first can help you create a monthly surplus.
Express illustration
Express illustration

It is that time of the year when you look back at the year gone by and review prospects for the year ahead. As investors in the stock market, you could be familiar with the rituals associated with Diwali. Those new to the investment world must quickly learn that Diwali is not just about rituals but more about your attitude and actions towards your money. There are good and evil things that you need to balance to create wealth for yourself and your family successfully.

The good things first
If you have a regular income, your habit of saving money first can help you create a monthly surplus. After you manage to keep your expenses in control, you will be able to invest. Small investments with a disciplined approach can help you build the corpus needed for your short-term and long-term goals. If you are new to investing or not familiar with the world of finance, you must seek professional help. 

Independent financial advisors registered with regulators can help determine the correct asset allocation. You need to always err on prudence regarding your savings and investing. There are the right things to do at the right time. When young, you must pay yourself first and start saving and investing small portions of your income for your sunset years. That way, you can have a better retirement than most others. 

Surveys have shown confidence in real estate and gold for households in India. As a new investor, you may want to invest in knowledge this year. A plethora of information is available to you at the tap on your mobile phone. Your effort in knowledge will give you an edge. There are ways you can use technology to create an asset allocation plan, too. The financial advisory segment of the financial services sector has made significant strides with the help of technology. Investing is all about knowledge and information at the right time that can be used to make effective investment decisions.

The evil
It is all in your head. Your attitude can take you down. If you are new to work, you must set your priorities upfront. If you spend more, you may borrow money regularly on credit cards or personal loans to meet your expenditure. The data from the Reserve Bank of India already shows a sharp surge in personal loans. These are unsecured loans taken to spend. If you do not have adequate discipline, no amount of income would be sufficient. 

You have to strike a balance between your income and spending so that money is left for investing. Several biases can hurt your financial life, too. If you rely too much on others to help you with your money without learning, you will lose control over your finances. Many young people cite inadequate knowledge as the reason for not investing. The same people do not hesitate to put their hard-earned money into unregulated financial instruments.

Herd mentality affects your investments much more than any other bias. You could do the same without understanding the market cycle just because someone else is making quick money in an asset class. You could enter late or at the cycle’s peak and lose money when prices fall suddenly. On the other hand, you may keep off certain asset classes because someone you know lost money in the past or you do not have time to understand that sector. That could also be a mistake that could set you back regarding wealth. 

Money may not buy you all the happiness. While everyone may wish you well and all the happiness, you know that things can never stay in one state. Your ability to let good habits win will determine how you live your life.

Your previous generations have worked hard to earn much less than you do now. If you invest in knowledge, take professional help and stay disciplined about your money, you can genuinely celebrate Diwali by letting your good habits win. 

Rajas Kelkar
(The author is editor-in-chief at www.moneyminute.in)

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