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Friday, 5 July 2013

Why discussing about Personal Finance is a taboo?


I have always found that people are hesitant to speak regarding their Personal Finance. As if this information is going to be published by the listener in next days’ newspaper or will go live on a television news channel. However, why discussing Personal Finance is a taboo? Let’s try to find out.


·       Financial literacy is low. Many people although having a successful career feel shy to discuss Personal Finance because of lack of knowledge. It is certainly nothing to be shy about; you cannot be expert in every field.

·       The matter is Top Confidential. How can it be discussed in open? Do not forget that unless you discuss, how can anybody help? Find out the right person to discuss.
·       The indifferent attitude- I don’t know anything about it. My brother, father, ……….etc. take care of all Personal Finance matters. Remember the best custodian of money is the person who earns it.
·       It is a ‘Personal’ affair—meant to be discussed only in the family. If the family has a qualified and knowledgeable Personal Finance person then it’s fine.
·      The word itself says that it is ‘Personal’ Finance, how to discuss with every Tom, Dick and Harry? However, people with this attitude do not want to discuss it even with a friendly Jerry.
·       Personal Finance matters are to be dealt by Chartered Accountants. In majority cases Chartered Accountants are experts in Audit and Taxation matters. Their view will be from the point of saving taxes, which is only a part of Personal Finance.
·       Fear of being mocked for an incorrect decision. If a wrong decision is made it needs to be rectified. Unless the matter is discussed how the corrective action will be taken?
·       My secret Personal Finance strategy. Share it to know about the cons, being ‘your’ strategy you may be having a biased opinion about it. In this world of information explosion, knowledge is getting marginalized. However, knowledge will always prevail over mere information.
·       Personal Finance is never a high priority.  Although each individual strives for earning money to achieve his goals, family and workplace will always be on top priority. With no limit to working hours in today’s world, there is hardly any time left to manage own money.
·       Hiding of facts. If Personal Finance matters are on a poorer side then they are usually hidden from children/partners. Hiding Personal Finance matters will only result in strained relationships.
·      There is no way out of long contracts of Traditional insurance/ULIP’s I have subscribed. Check the policy conditions, there is a way out. Based on the conditions, your needs and feasibility take a prudent decision.
·      Agents/Relationship Managers/Stock Broker etc. have sucked my money out with wrong products and undisclosed charges. I am a victim of mis-selling. Now I cannot trust anybody for Personal Finance. You cannot remain a victim for long. Find a qualified, unbiased advisor and seek solution to come out of the mess.
My feeling is that Personal Finance should be discussed openly as a subject. Going down to micro level or not is entirely an individual choice. Do you think treating Personal Finance as a taboo and masking it with confidentiality really doing the individual any favor? Please find out for yourself. If you find it is not, bite the forbidden to experience that it is not really a sin.