Friday, January 13, 2017

Money & Love Event : My take on the event

The one big talk for 2017 is over. Before I get back into finishing up law school, here are my thoughts on the event yesterday.

If I can redo the event all over again, I will make two changes to the programme.

First, I will work closer with SDN or ROM to find sponsorship and scale the event to invite a bigger audience. But we are still a bunch of financial bloggers who are trying to bring a new kind of seminar into this market. For our next event, I am pitching towards an event which is friendlier to sponsors so that we can do this on a larger scale and may even be able to pass on cost-savings to customers.

Second, I think a lady speaker would make our event so much better and so much more relatable to the women in the audience. We were initially expecting more husbands to show up but ended up with a balanced crowd. A woman's perspective would have added so much value last night.

We are now processing the feedback from the audience and more will be said over the next few days. One feedback is that we did not answer one question properly on how our finances changed when we transitioned from being single to being married.

That being said, I just thought I'd share what I liked the most about what the other speakers said. This is because for BigScribe events, the speaker is also part of the audience and I am listening to Thomas and Lional speak the first time last night :

a) 15WW / Thomas Zhuo

Thomas' presentation is really useful to me because it addresses many personal question I had for the past 20 years. There is always this arrangement I know that university students make with each other during their undergraduate days about settling down early and getting married upon graduation which I never understood because women wouldn't touch me with a 10 foot pole 20 years ago. How do these peeps know that their significant other is a the right one when they haven't even started earning money yet ?

Thomas' best idea is his justification for marrying early. When you marry at a younger age, you get the best subsidies and can obtain a cheaper mortgage since houses which appreciate with time. Marry later, and you might bust the income requirements to buy a HDB. Subsequently, the appreciation in the value of your real estate will exceed what many couples can save if they opt to live with their parents or remain single.

Of course, the caveat is that property goes up in value as they have done in the past.

b) Cheerfulegg / Lionel Yeo

The great thing about bloggers coming together is our different styles and I'm glad Lionel gave a very upbeat presentation on his approach towards managing his personal finances. If I'm Batman, Lionel is Superman. This blog channels fear and encourages gritty skepticism. Cheerfulegg channels hope and encourages moving towards a happy and fulfilled life.

Last night, Lionel distilled his ideas into a framework which made taking actionable steps very easy for listeners. Now I don't really want to discuss Lionel's entire framework because it is vary valuable and something which should only be shared if you can consult our paying customers, but I just want to share one really useful tip I learned from Lionel.

In my earlier books, I recommended employing a second savings account to assist in keeping a budget. When your salary arrives, decide on how much you want to save and immediately transfer that amount into this second account. This way you pay yourself first through a process I called salary truncation.

Lionel has a more sophisticated operation. He employs the OCBC 360 account which allows him to create many micro-accounts like Travel and Restaurants. OCBC 360 also let's him automate transfers from his main account a day after he receives his salary.

[ Note : OCBC does not pay me a single cent to say this ]

The ultimate benefit from such an expert move on automating your finance is the amount of mental stress it frees up so that you can live the life of your dreams.

What to expect in the future

BigScribe has now two fully sold out events and the feedback so far is that we somehow managed to the get the formula right. We will be conducting our meetings to see if we can conduct such events on a more regular basis and I have already pitched to the directors what I hope to do next.

If you like our events, please share with me what kind of things that you'd like us to talk about. Collectively our research and delivery capabilities are reasonably strong and you should not constrain yourself to simply investment content.

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