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A look at the bigger picture – Warren Buffet’s tips on starting off a debt-free 2015

debt-free 2015According to recent reports, India’s GDP grew up by 5% in the financial year, 2012-2013, which was the lowest since the last decade. It seems that the 2008 recession still looms large on the daily lives of the Indians. While the lawmakers are there to take larger and bigger decisions about the nation’s GDP, the common man can’t do much about macro-economic indicators. As we’re about to step into 2015, we need to organize our finances and revisit, learn and imbibe some timeless personal finance lessons from the maestro Warren Buffet so that we can overcome the financial shocks that may be in store for us in 2015.

1. Review 2014 before you start: Before taking any step, start off with a review of 2014. How did you fare? What points did you miss? Which financial tasks are still pending? Where did you commit some of the biggest blunders? Were all your investments on track? By evaluating your strengths and weaknesses that you’ve portrayed in 2014, you will easily be able to deduce the steps that you need to take to improve your finances. Write down everything in points so that you don’t forget anything while planning for 2015.

2. Create a frugal budget: Budgeting is a basic but important tool. When you know what you earned and where your money went, you can be aware of your current financial situation. Often times, when your expenses are high, a large part is accounted by all those unexpected and unplanned expenses like entertainment, eating out, coffee shop bills, which are difficult to control and restrain. So, you should first know the excess outgo and then analyse the spending habits so that you can limit each expense. Live within your means and check yourself whenever you see that you’re outdoing your budget.

3. Spend wisely and live thriftily: Warren Buffet says that if you buy things that you don’t need, soon you will find yourself sell things that you need. Most of us suffer from the urge to splurge and most often we justify our expenses using the pretext of special occasions, lifestyle, family emotions and even smart decisions. Most marketing companies understand this urge and they try to exploit by giving us offers on products. Unhealthy carbonated drinks are sold with promises of adventure, youthfulness and happiness. You may also take the example of EMI options on expensive smartphone. Little do they understand that through the EMI option, people tend to pay more in the long run.

4. Save money for the financial odds: Remember that someone is sitting under the shade today as someone planted a tree long time ago. All of us are aware of the fact that saving money is important to have a better future. But it is indeed an alarming fact to observe that most of us don’t even save enough money for the emergencies. This happens due to our extremely myopic view of our personal financial condition. Today, instant gratification matters more than saving for tomorrow. In fact, saving is considered as sacrifice by most people. Follow the “pay yourself first” principle. Set aside some money for your future.

5. Plan for the long term and be patient: No matter how great are your talents and effort, there are some things that just take time. Can you ever produce a baby in one month by getting nine women pregnant at the same time? Money is also a part of nature and it can’t grow overnight. However, we always overestimate money that we can make in a year and underestimate what we can make in 10 years. People should make money by staying invested for the long-term instead of dancing in and dancing out of the portfolios and changing them constantly. According to India’s growth, you can benefit only if you invest for long term and stop panicking for short-term fluctuations. Based on your risk appetite and financial goals, make a diversified portfolio. Pick right financial instruments recommended by your financial advisor.

6. Borrow within your limit: Remember that you can never become rich by living on borrowed money. Initially people think that borrowing is manageable and to later on repay the previous borrowings, they take out yet more loans like the debt consolidation loans. This is more like fighting-fire-with-fire approach towards debt reduction. Borrowing should never be done without an objective assessment of future cash flow and other financial needs. Have a solid plan to pay the debt back and not become its slave.

A debt-free life is indeed the best life. In spite of knowing this, there are many who hardly take the required steps to stay on the right track. If you’re not willing to spend a life immersed in debt, take into account the above mentioned financial tips by Warren Buffet.

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Date:
December 17, 2014 um 5:41 pm
Category:
Budgeting,Debt,Personal Finance
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