Saturday, June 30, 2012

Hope for millionaire-wanna-bes

My sister kidded me a few years ago, saying she's not like me who writes down every expense in a notebook. I chuckled. It must be the CPA in me, I reasoned out.

The truth is, I want to know if I'm overspending, if my income is enough for my needs, and if I'm saving enough. I feel sad when, at the end of the year, I find out I incurred a net loss. And when I come up with a positive figure after deducting the year's expenses from my income the year, I shout, "Yay!"

There have been good years and lean ones, but always, I would see God's hand providing for our needs. We have an awesome God indeed.

Due to my interest in personal finance, I have read a number of books on managing your money. A new one that I received recently is the little white book "9 to 5 Millionaire" by Leila Hernandez, just published this year. It's marketed by the Christian publishing ministry CSM Publishing Inc.

What makes this book different from majority of the books I've read is that it was written with the busy employed person in mind. Its target readers are those who have full-time jobs from 9 to 5 (or any 8-hour schedule) desiring to one day retire as millionaires.

Is that at all possible? Author Hernandez says it is, citing herself as an example. She did not grow up rich, and in fact, was told by her mother there was no money for her college education. But she persevered, supported herself as a working student, saved diligently, and worked hard after graduation. Although she lost her savings dabbling in the stock market, she has bounced back, and retired young as a millionaire after years of working.

The author reminds readers to have a goal, a road map, and mind map in mind. And, like other authors, she advocates building up passive income (income from investments, not your job) while earning active income (salary from a full-time job).

She tackles investing in stocks and real estate in chapters 4 and 5 and does so in an easy-to-understand way. After reading, you get the idea that, hey, yeah, maybe I can do that.

It's not a comprehensive guide, but an informative guide to attaining financial freedom nonetheless.

And at the end of it, when you have reached your goal, Hernandez says, "The biggest reward is your transformation. Life is not about what you acquire, but what you become, how you lived and loved." Puts everything into perspective, doesn't it? :)

BOOK OF THE WEEK: I just finished The Tehran Initiative by Joel C. Rosenberg which I got on sale at OMF Lit's R.O.B. sale this month, and man, I could hardly put it down! It takes off from Rosenberg's last fiction book The Twelfth Imam and follows CIA secret operative David Shirazi on his mission to find out all he can about Iran's nuclear program. Throw in the end of the world scenario and Biblical prophecy and you have suspense on every page. 

VERSE OF THE WEEK: "The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want." Psalm 23:1