The Journey – Remembering the GFC

We’re back people!

Back to where? Back to the future, back to back, back to the journey.

Recently, I’ve been noticing more and more media articles regarding the GFC.

But sir, why would Australian media outlets write about a UAE based kickboxing and mixed martial arts event?

These 4 guys started the GFC in their mum’s garage.

No you fool – the Global Financial Crisis.

Oh, that old chestnut – yep I remember, we all remember.

It’s been almost 10 years since that seismic event rocked the world. Reading through these articles made me nostalgic of those heady days.

In 2007, I recall one distinct moment sitting around the university dormitory tables discussing the financial markets with an old friend and the topic of sub-prime lending came about.

“Have you guys heard of sub-prime mortgages?”

What’s sub-prime mean?

Investopedia states: “Subprime is a classification of loans offered at rates greater than the prime rate to individuals who are unable to qualify for prime rate loans. This usually occurs when borrowers have poor credit and, as a result, the lender views them as higher risk.”

Basically this translates to:

“Hey, I can’t get a loan anywhere else but what if I pay you a bit more, you’ll give me some money right?”

“Yeah, why not?”

YIPPEE my loan’s approved!

Wait… does anyone else see what’s wrong here?

I have a poor credit score (i.e. my capacity to repay debt is lower than the average person) and I am viewed as higher risk (fair enough) yet I can obtain a loan so long as I pay a higher rate of interest?

Not just me, but $640 billion of me. Cools. CNN Money reports in 2006, sub-prime loans amount to about 20 percent of the nation’s mortgage lending and 17% of home purchases.

WOW 20 percent! That’s one in… one in… one in six! No wait, five. 17 Percent, that’s… ah fudge it – that’s just under 18% I think.

What kinda fucked up silhouettes are these?

That’s a lot of mortgages and a lot of home purchases.

Of course, eventually the house of cards (so witty I am) all fell down.

But sitting around the dormitory tables that day in 2007 I knew none of this.

I just thought that the markets were behaving quite oddly.

Markets were behaving like this photo – seriously there is SO much going on in this pic.

For the last few years it only went in one direction UP.

See here on the ASX200 for those years and the aftermath:

Amazing work.

Today, I happened to chance a look at the US market and almost coughed up my Vietnamese pork roll with no mayo and extra chilli. See here on S&P500:

What a brilliant piece of art.

At first glance, the parallels between 2007 and 2017 suggest the media outlets are onto something.

I’m not saying the markets will slide from here on in – you’d be pretty naive to listen to everything in the media, I mean come on, they report that getting married is “surprisingly” rational on the FRONT page FFS.

But today, there are so many other factors to take into consideration – government interventions, increased regulations, mayo or no mayo, it’s difficult to make a clear judgement.

I can judge this guy needs intervention.

The right brain “feels” it’s about time for another roller-coaster but the left brain “rationalises” that nah it’s still in our minds – we are all prepared.

That’s the conundrum for myself at least, where are we headed?

Let’s go back to that fateful day in 2007 and see if there are any clues. With hindsight, the warning signs were there.

  • A spate of sub-prime lenders filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy including New Century Financial – the largest. All this within the first 6 months of the year, coincidence? Nah, just the collapse of the sub-prime industry.
  • HSBC announces bad debt provisions for 2006 rose 20% to USD10.5bn
  • Bear Sterns informs investors that it is halting redemptions for 2 of its hedge funds – this meant investors cannot ask for their money back. “Hey didn’t I give you $100 to invest for me? Can I have it back?” “What $100?”
“What money?”
  • Credit crunch begins as subprime exposure is discovered in banks and funds worldwide.
  • French Investment Bank BNP Paribas suspends three investment funds that invested in sub-prime debt citing “complete lack of liquidity”.
  • Central Banks co-ordinate efforts world-wide to increase liquidity.
These people have too much liquidity.
  • A whole bunch of others too numerous for this post, collapses, near collapses of household names, government interventions, politicians and central bankers scrambling, media on overdrive, me discovering pork rolls, it was endless.

However one of the key take-aways which I took away and which I missed at the time – is the lack of liquidity. The inability to transact in a market place due to lack of buyers and/or sellers.

Bankers are cunning folk, when they smell a rat, they bring out the flamethrowers to cover their backsides. Why send a platoon out when you can carpet bomb the whole village? When it’s time to GTFO, it’s women, children and bankers first – not necessarily in that order.

A banker in action.

Having worked at a number of financial institutions, I learnt that it’s frowned upon to cop a financial loss, but absolute sacrilege if you damage the “name”.

If you have to take a hit – you take a hit, you do NOT do anything to jeopardise your reputation and brand. Freezing redemptions and suspending funds hits your brand and goodwill the most.

Not only are you saying your performance is shit, but hey give me your money, we might not give it back.

Don’t worry, I’ll put this in a sub-prime fund.

Huge, just huge.

But hey notice how despite the negative news coming out, the markets still peaked late 2007? There was a good 7-8 months of negativity being pumped out but still it tracked along.

Humans – how little we know.

I’ll definitely be paying more attention on the news coming out and managing my investments even more closely – will you do the same?

P.S. Thanks for reading – remember to comment and follow so you can receive instant updates from TheFrugalSamurai!

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Property Management

Oh TheFrugalSamurai I missed you so much, please don’t ever leave me.

There there, it’s OK – I’m back now!

But wait – where did you disappear to?

Adelaide people, Adelaide.

What’s Adelaide? Is that a cool and refreshing drink?

This city is not Adelaide.

No no – it’s a city in South Australia renowned for… umm… renowned for…

(Cue dream-like music as scene travels back in time and fades to black.)

(New scene, camera pans to car cruising down a busy road. It is night.)

“HEY THEFRUGALSAMURAI WHAT’S YOUR BLOG ABOUT” said the person in the front passenger seat as we drove from Adelaide airport to our City hotel last Friday.

Welcome to the Crowne Plaza, where normal spelling rules don’t apply.

“Well MrsFrugalSamurai-to-be’s friend, it’s about personal finance and development”

“I’VE READ IT – I DON’T GET IT, WHERE ARE THE PERSONAL FINANCE AND DEVELOPMENT?”

“You blind old duck, do you know how to READ, it’s here, here and here” I almost blurted, instead of “thank you for the feedback, I’ll take it on board Emili (not her real name), greatly appreciated”.

For the rest of the drive to the hotel however, I realised Emili had wisdom in her words – damnit she always does.

This is not Emili.

That’s why between all the food, wine and good times I was so glad that a couple of other ladies on our trip asked me my thoughts regarding property management. (Property Management is where you pay people to manage your property – took me awhile to figure it out too).

Finally something on personal finance and development to talk about in correlation with our weekend getaway! I was stoked.

One of the ladies had a very poor experience with her previous property manager, “he was shit, how do you find someone who is not you know, shit”.

Imagine seeing this in the toilet bowl, you’d get a fucking heart attack.

We all have a little shit in ourselves ma’am is what I was thinking of saying, but again I didn’t back myself – I’m just shy.

Coincidentally another friend of mine also asked me in a separate conversation regarding property management when we returned from our trip.

RISE good property managers – you guys are the most sought after people apart from amazing personal finance and development bloggers.

I’ve gone through a few in my time and can tell you that when you find a good one – stick to them like glue. Mind you, not physically, that would be difficult and socially awkward in modern society.

Piss off, I’m trying to find a good property manager.

Below is what I did to find good property managers both local and inter-state:

Talk to people – wow such a profound and insightful comment.

No seriously guys, word-of-mouth marketing is the most powerful form of marketing there is.

If you receive positive service or value, you may tell people about it. But I guarantee if you receive negative service or feedback you will tell people about it.

It’s just who we are deep inside.

King Leonidas received negative feedback from the Persians.

There are plenty of forums and websites out there just waiting for your perusal. Once in, read the reviews and then private message the posters – you’d be amazed how talkative people are online, especially if they had a bad experience.

Shortlist a few property managers – once I discerned which ones had positive feedback, I called them direct and basically interviewed them with the following questions:

  • How long have you been a property manager? (Obvious but easily missed)
Excuse me, how long have you been a property manager?
  • How many properties are you/your staff managing right now? (Too many and they may not “service” your property with enough attention. Too little and it may be a sign the business is not mature or floundering. A good rule of thumb is around 70-90 properties per manager).
  • How many vacancies are on your books currently? (Is it because of their lack of initiative, or because of the specific area?)
How many vacancies do you have currently?
  • How long does it take to fill a vacancy? (Gives you a good guide as to what to expect for the suburb you invest in, shorter the vacancy time, better it is – vacancies will make or break your net rental yield).
  • What is your eviction process? (GTFO of my property, oh wait, there’s a process to follow… what is it?)
Sorry sir, please kindly leave the premises or we will evict you.
  • What is your late rent policy? (Ditto to above, late rent is a sign but not necessarily a red flag unless it is consistent).
  • What are your fees? (Remember everything is negotiable. Fees include: management, advertising, leasing, lease renewal, routine inspection, admin, taxes e.g. GST and a whole bunch of others which gouge into your returns, be mindful of this necessary evil).
  • How do you screen prospective tenants? (It’s normally a standardised process of references, references and more references cross-referenced with the tenant register which is also a reference).
All prospective tenants must be able to lift a log.
  • How do you collect rent? (i.e. when and how do I get paid bro?)
  • Which contractors do you work with? (This is a tough one as you won’t know the quality of their maintenance contractors until they actually go out and fix things).
  • How long do I have to give notice if I want out of our agreement? (If things aren’t working out, I don’t want to be locked in for 90 days whilst a shitty property manager continues to collect fees off me, I’d want to move asap, try to negotiate for 30 days, less the better).

However the most important consideration in my view is communication – like any good relationship they need to communicate well, that’s why I am mindful of value but I am even more mindful of communication.

Communication begins at the start with all the little things – do they return phone calls, how soon, do they keep me updated with what’s going on, are they quick to reply to/action requests etc. You know the drill.

Ha. Ha. Ha.

You could of course self-manage the property but personally I’d rather pay a professional to allow me to concentrate and focus on other things.

Also when the shit hits the fan, you’d want someone there who’s good at cleaning shit from fans.

A good property manager is an integral part of your property portfolio as they are your eyes and ears on the ground.

End of the day you are paying them for a service so why shouldn’t you deserve the best?

Unfortunately, you won’t really know whether they are good or not unless you partner with them so please make sure you constantly review whether what you are paying is worth it.

This is not worth it.

If it’s not worth it and you are continuing to pay them, pay me instead – I’ll sing and dance and make you jolly for the same price but for a much better outcome.

Good luck!

P.S. A friend suggested I put a disclaimer for all posts in case someone followed my strategy and advice to the letter and it didn’t work out for them.

Flattering as it will be, these are my personal opinions only so please, please, please do not proceed any legal action against me if things go sour (lawyer speak for “fucked”).

Please do your own research and above all caveat emptor – let the buyer beware (I was quite proud of myself when typing that Latin phrase, felt so EDUCATED).

Hump Day

Heigh Ho, Heigh Ho it’s off to work we go.

Hello again friends!

Heigh Ho indeed for most of us although luckily it’s Wednesday which means HUMP DAY!

This is the last known sighting of the men wanted by the FBI linked to a high-profile missing persons case.

Hump day’s term came about because you know naturally the seven day week is like a camel, and Wednesday which falls in the middle is the “hump” or midpoint of the week, get over this hump and it’s a smooth downhill ride to Thursday and then it’s FRIDAY BITCHES and the promised land of weekend goodness.

But sir, what if you have a two-humped camel? … sigh, life is hard.

 

Hump day was not named after this camel.

When did this concept of hump-day come into existence? You see, growing up as children we learnt that Wednesday is known simply as “Wednesday”.

These days there are so many feelings associated with different days of the week:

Monday- ARGH not MONDAY!

Tuesday -a redundant day, nothing happens on Tuesday.

Wednesday – hump day.

Come to work they said. It’s hump day they said. It’ll be great they said.

 

Thursday – not quite Friday.

Friday – everyone is happy on this day and the world is whole again.

Saturday – time to go hard and PARTY PEOPLE WOOP, THERE IT IS!

Sunday – rest and relax, let me Zzzzz.

And the wheel turns again.

This hamster is doing it right.

Increasingly it seems that the days of the week determine our mood and our attitude. Whilst at work today there were around 4 or 5 comments about hump day.

“Don’t worry it’s hump day, weekend here soon”, “damnit, I just want to get over hump day”, “hey thefrugalsamurai, you suck”. NO YOU SUCK BARRY YOU FFFFFF.

When did this happen? When did we associate our moods, thoughts and feelings to the different days of the week?

Our dreams and goals don’t care what day it is – they sit there mocking our ways. Feeble humans – no wonder you can’t touch this.

I… I don’t think I want to s…sir.

Hey, I built my multi-million dollar business working only Monday, Tuesday and some of Wednesday, you can too!

Hey, I created my property empire by calling agents and researching properties on Monday and Tuesday, it’s so easy bro.

Hey, I wooed the girl of my dreams by only seeing her on Monday nights, she’s so amazing.

We all know that the successful people get to where they are by knuckling down and smashing it out irrespective of what day of the week it was.

 

He he he.

But I have indoor soccer on Thursday night – I can’t pursue my goals then!

Of course not, what about Friday? Nah Friday is for friends.

Oh OK – and Saturday? More family and friends.

Hmmm Sunday? Getting ready for the week, last precious hours of freedom – LET ME BE.

So Monday then? Yeah maybe if work’s not too tiring.

Tuesday then – yep, I’ll get to em on Tuesday.

Wow that sounds like such a familiar tale!

It should be seeing as those were the excuses I gave myself. And I wonder why I am not successful?

This horse is also not successful.

But thefrugalsamurai sir, success is different for everyone.

100% agree with you there, no one is arguing against that – but if you were like me during that period and wanted to move out of the life I was on, to the life I wanted to live, something had to give.

Among the first was this concept of “Hump Day”, TGIF, Terrible Monday, Cheap Tuesday (it’s cheap every day!) – treat each day the same, they are an opportunity to work on your dreams and goals.

Come on guys – let’s get over hump day together!

All The Small Things

Hi gang! Back for another dose of TheFrugalSamurai? Of course you are!

Last night, one of MrsTheFrugalSamurai-to-be’s close friends held an event which consisted of a splatter party followed by an intimate dinner (intimate as in with other close friends, not just with MrsTheFrugalSamurai-to-be).

Give us 5 minutes, we’re just cleaning up after the last group.

Unfortunately I couldn’t attend the splatter party because a) I had something on which I couldn’t get out of and b) I was mis-informed by MrsTheFrugalSamurai-to-be:

“Hey, come to a splatter party on Saturday”.

“What’s that?”

“You know, a party with paint”.

“NICE – you mean paintball?! I LOVE PAINTBALL!!!”

“No, its not paintball, it’s a party with paint, you paint”.

“… so like a renovation?

It was only later when I was kindly informed that a splatter party is where you paint people with paint, a most bemusing concept.

Stand still so I can paint you.

At dinner, the men were left in the corner whilst the ladies excitedly mingled and chatted amongst themselves.

One of the guys there just returned from an overseas trip where he was scouting potential manufacturing sites to create his own fashion label. A pretty out there thing to do, I thought seeing as his normal day job is in real estate.

A couple of things he said really struck me though:

“You know, it’s all about the small things – I mean, I’ve had this thought for the best part of 2, 3 years and never did anything, just kept on saying I will do it.

At the same time as I was planning to go on my trip my friends also planned a once-in-a-lifetime holiday to South America for 5 weeks so it was really a case of one or the other.

I thought I’ll probably never get the chance to act on this dream ever again and decided to just start to do something – basically bought the plane tickets and locked myself in”.

And he continued:

“I have a friend who is always grumpy with life – he always gets jealous with other people’s success.

Someone creates a successful app – oh I could have done that, someone becomes a YouTube star – oh we can do that, this is how, someone makes a lot of money from starting their own business – oh it’s so easy, anyone can make a lot of money doing that.

But he has not done anything forever, and that’s it though, people don’t do anything, they say this and they say that but they don’t do it – you just have to do something, anything”.

Please don’t do this.

Such profound words – I couldn’t believe it, this guy stated exactly what I was thinking!

Or this.

Now hang on a minute – what if you don’t want to create a successful app or become a YouTube star or make a lot of money from your own business?

That’s perfectly OK, no one is forcing you to do something you don’t want to do, you gotta do you.

To quote another scholarly friend “I just want to earn $150k per year and live an easy life with a loving wife, two kids and good friends”.

But if you want to, as in really want to – please do yourself a favour and stop talking about it, take action, do something, anything to just get started.

You’d be amazed how things snowball from there with a small step.

Snowballs are usually made of snow.

Shit, but I don’t have the time, I’m scared of losing money, I’m so comfortable where I am, I don’t know where to begin.

All so true and so valid. I learnt a long time ago that us humans are motivated by two feelings, either running towards pleasure or running away from pain.

Out of these two, the survival instinct of running away from pain is exponentially more stronger than running towards pleasure. Would you have sex in a burning house? Probably not.

Just. Why.

Changing the status quo means moving out of our comfort zone – that means pain.

What you’re feeling is normal, hell when I first started this blog, I had no clue what I was doing, whether people would enjoy my posts, what people would say about me, if I could sustain blogging.

But you know what, I started and to me that’s a win. That’s all that matters really – I said I will start blogging and here I am.

Believe me, I am more technologically challenged than the majority of people so if I can churn out content on a blog, you can create an app, become a YouTube star, make a lot of money from your own business.

You just have to begin to do something. Anything.

Surely I know more than this guy.

P.S. I’ve decided on mixing up the posts between the journey with anecdotal pieces of events which have transpired in the current day. So forgive me if you were expecting another installment of the journey – I’ll definitely be continuing that series.

 

The Journey Begins.

Hello friends, I’m back!

First off, have to say thank you all for the overwhelming responses and private messages of support after the last post, very much appreciated! I debated long and hard with myself as to whether to share it, so great to hear you enjoyed it.

Apologies for then going AWOL, you must have thought, this guy – pulls us in with his personal expose and then buggers off to gloat and grin like a Cheshire Cat.

Hi, I’m Chester, how do you do?

Not at all friends, have faith people – I was just investigating what I need to do to bring the blog and website up to standard. Seems like the expected shelf life for a blog is less than 6 months because bloggers either become disheartened due to lack of views or burn-out.

Being a marathon not a sprint, I’ve decided to space out the posts a bit so the content can be quality over quantity. Maybe once or twice a week going forward (I know – like you, my tears haven’t stopped, I’m devastated).

I’m shattered as well Barack.

But back to posting!

The most common question I get after the last post is – hey how come you are so really really really ridiculously good-looking? Um, genes and good diet I think, next question please. What’s that? How did I get to where I am now? I caught the bus home, nex… oh you mean financially? Well let me start from the beginning.

Once upon a time…

Growing up, as mentioned before I was never the smartest kid nor the brightest at school. I’d rather play soccer and run around than learn about Caecilius or Pythagoras or Syphilis. Not that I wasn’t aware of STD’s or didn’t have an affinity for triangles, it was just that I wasn’t into studying texts from books or writing about the feminism reading of Hamlet.

Subsequently my marks in the Year 12 (senior) exams were poor in comparison to my school friends and I was fortunate to even be offered a place at uni for a Bachelor of Commerce.

I loved going to uni, truly it was the best years of my life – the freedom, the friends, the activities, the freedom, the girls (forgive me, I attended an all boys high school) and the freedom! Wowsers, amazing time.

He fought so I could attend university, RIP sir.

With all the freedom I had, unfortunately I did not devote enough time to study and just scraped through in my last year when it came to the finals and pass grades (sound familiar!).

However the biggest take-out of that year, was not that I finally knew what Syphilis was (nono, not me OK, my friend *Bruno caught that grenade) or that girls could give you Syphilis – it was my first taste of working in financial services.

My friend ^Warren referred me to a firm he was working at and that’s how I got in, through a referral.

Thanks Warren for the hook-up!

I was placed in the financial planning arm where I quickly learnt I was never going to be a financial planner. Luckily though, one of the junior planners was a massive share-market buff. He loved trading in penny stocks and one day gave me a “hot” tip.

“Buy XYZ”

“What’s that?”

“It’s a stock, you know a company”

“Oh cool, how do I do that?”

He then proceeded to show me how to open up a trading account, how to transfer funds and how to buy and sell shares.

The journey had started!

This elephant is shitting itself.

Naturally I bought XYZ with everything I had at the time – maybe a grand maybe two and watched and waited.

Nothing happened, I waited a few more days, the stock moved up a cent or two – holy moly, I made a week’s wages!

What do I do? Should I sell? Should I buy more? Should I go and dance a jig? TELL ME.

Relax, just wait and see – there’s more money to be made yet, he reassured me.

Ha ha ha, I’m RICH!

So that’s what I did… and saw the investment lose three quarters of its value.

No wait, false alarm.

WTF is this – what a crappy game, I just lost three quarters of my money, now tell me, what do I buy next?

I was hooked – my investment journey had started and I wanted more! Like an addict, I kept coming back so I could get my hit.

When you first start out you don’t know what research is, heck you can’t even spell due diligence, but what you do know is when you see your money move up and down it’s terribly exciting.

Leave me alone mother, I’m researching BHP.

You can never learn this with formal education, as much as I love learning about Trigonometric functions and Black-Scholes, formal education didn’t teach me diddly squat as to what to do when the GFC hit around the corner, formal education didn’t teach me when I should sell when I was holding onto a multi-bagger during the aftermath, formal education didn’t teach me what I should do when that same multi-bagger reversed and I lost my entire stake in it.

What happened? Let me tell you, you see… what’s that? This post is too long, you have to get back to work? OK fine, I’ll save it then just for you.

Until next time friends!

*Not his real name, his real name is Ivan, Hi Ivan!!!

^Warren’s real name is Warren.

My numbers revealed…

Evening friends!

Hope everyone is enjoying their Sunday evening! Are you all psyched for Monday? Woot woot! At the very least, I hope you basked in the beautiful Spring weather today.

This is a picture from the internet.

After the last post on feedback I received a goodly number of well, feedback and the consistent theme is to continue to make it personable – “treat it like Reality TV”.

Reality TV? I can’t cook for scary chefs or sing in front of artists named after animals – what do you mean reality TV?

“So I said – I’ve been kissed by a rose on the gray”.

Then it hit me – just talk about yourself, people love peering into other people’s lives. So easy, so simpaul.

Being a personal finance and development blog, it wouldn’t do any of you justice without having me disclose my own personal finances and development so big breath, here goes:

Currently my portfolio is made up of predominantly real estate, shares, superannuation (similar to the 401k my American friends) and cash.

The real estate portfolio is where the bulk majority of my net wealth is. It sits just shy of $2m with pretty much bang on $1m of debt. So around 50-55% loan to value (LVR) ratio. I consider this gearing at a conservative level and as all loans are on principal + interest repayments, they are amortising as we speak. Ideally I would like to bring this gearing to around the 60-70% level which would mean another property or two.

My real estate portfolio.

Mind you, my income servicing levels are almost at their peak so it would be interesting to see how I can juggle this with the various lenders going forward. Juggling is so cool, you throw many things (ideas, oranges, your hands, sharp objects etc) in the air and then catch them and then throw them in the air again and then repeat until you either become too fatigued or get killed by said objects. It’s a favourite pastime of the Ancient Incas.

An Inca about to commence the act of juggling.

Enough about juggling, back to it. The share portfolio is nowhere near as solid as the real estate portfolio. Outside super, it’s been smashed to hell and back in the aftermath of the GFC and Eurozone Crisis and hasn’t yet recovered.

This is because being young and naive at the time, I invested in bitcoi… I mean I invested in highly speculative, no fundamentals, micro-cap “companies” which either nuked the moon or turned into infinity divided by zero. I escaped with around $40k capital loss overall during this period. Still hold some, they’ll come good, they always come good. Current value is enough to last me maybe 3 weeks if I wanted to give everything up and concentrate on juggling.

Man, why over-complicate things?

Superannuation – hands up who knows what their super balance is? You know the one which you get to access in 40 years time? Yes, 40 years, FORTY long, hard years. Most prison sentences don’t last that long.

Aha – you see that’s how I thought too, but then I came to realise one important aspect – it’s my money so damnit man if I’m not going to take charge of it. I researched which fund is most suitable for my needs and rolled everything in one (please do yourself a favour and consider changing to an industry or non-retail fund, the returns are so much better with lower fees, compare it yourself).

Personally I am with Australian Super because of the flexibility of Member Direct – this is a platform which allows direct share investment into the ASX200. You need to stay diversified and keep a liquid cash balance with slightly higher fees and brokerages, but I don’t mind – I’ve bought 5 stocks and haven’t sold since, a healthcare company, funeral home specialist, large resources conglomerate, gold mining equipment supplier and another mining services specialist. Mixed results in there but all long term holds. Sitting around $75k overall.

Finally onto cash. Cash is king baby, seriously, people who tell you otherwise either do not have it or do not know the fundamentals of being LIQUID.

You tell em Master Welch.

Without cash, there’s no point in having assets – they are just words on paper or numbers on the screen. This is one of the biggest lessons which I have learnt in my journey so far. I always ensure to keep a healthy cash balance at all times. I have around $150k swishing around in the various loan accounts and savings accounts.

So there you have it, that’s me finances, around $1.1m in net assets so far. Not too bad for 30 years of work and here’s hoping for better in the next 30.

How are you travelling along in your financial journey? I started this blog to share what I have learnt so far so you can achieve much better than I, in a much faster time-frame. After all, I’m just an ordinary guy with nothing to lose so if I can do it, you definitely can too!

Going forward, I’ll be posting how I did it and the biggest lessons along the way, so stay tuned.

P.S. Let me know if there’s any topics you guys are interested in specifically as well!

Feedback

“HELP!”

What’s wrong?! What’s wrong?!

“Nothing, just wanted to capture your attention.”

(Ducks to avoid flying saucepan to the FACE).

Now that I have it, I wanted to say a MASSIVE thank you to everyone who has read this blog so far. I know I added a small postscript at the end of the last post but that didn’t do it justice.

I learnt this phrase in year 8, it means thank you in German.

Been soul-searching a bit over the last couple of days as to the why, the how, the what, the who, the where, the what now… what am I saying… oh yeah that’s right, been soul searching for what’s truly important to me. You know it’s like in the great stories, Mr Frodo. The ones that really mattered. Full of darkness and danger, they were. And sometimes you didn’t want to know the end. “Sniff” (pulls out an over-sized, well worn, plaited handkerchief and looks into it with sad, forlorn eyes).

Samwise is so cool, he’s a one man/hobbit, spider stabbing, Gollum punching, barmaid fucking badass motherfucker. If Sam can have a moment accompanied by a symphony ensemble, then fuck it so can I.

Just like how Mr Frodo really matters to Sam, one of those items which really matters to me, I have come to realize, is this blog.

That’s it though ain’t it? I’ve stumbled into something which has ignited my passion and work on this project every single day.

When I finish, this will be the tallest blog in the world.

However after watching Lord of the Rings, I realized you can’t accomplish tasks alone – you need a prancing Elf, an alcoholic dwarf and an emo named Strider. For those of us who don’t have these 3 to call on we can just make do with feedback. Other people giving you their opinions and thoughts. Whether you listen is up to you, whether you implement it is up to you, but be grateful someone took the time out of their life to give you a moment’s notice to praise, criticize, laugh, curse and read your work. They didn’t have to do that.

Ha ha ha so true!

I’ve received lots of praise and private messages of support (thanking you again) however I need more feedback guys! What do you really think!

How do I improve? How do I make it even better for you guys? Give me as much feedback as I can handle and then some.

Please comment, subscribe, message, share, reach out and let me know!