Record Your Expenses

In my previous posts, you have seen my monthly and annual budgets. Now it is time I explained how I actually track and record my expenses, so I know how I am performing compared to the budgeted numbers. Most of our expenses are paid through debit cards. But in some cases, the vendor does not accept a card, in which case we use cash. We use two debit cards to make payments. Both cards are setup to send an email to me when any amount is debited from the bank. We make online payments or money transfers via NetBanking or … Continue reading “Record Your Expenses”

My Annual Expenses Explained

In my last post, I went over my monthly expenses. In this post I will go over my annual expenses so you too can plan your annual expenses along those lines. For the year 2018, I budgeted an annual expense of Rs. 3,60,000. That comes out to Rs. 30,000 per month. Annual expenses are those expenses that occur less frequently than a year. So things like property tax, buying a car, painting your house etc will come under annual expenses. My annual expenses planning is shown below. The first column is the list of expense types. The second column is … Continue reading “My Annual Expenses Explained”

My Monthly Expenses Explained

In one of my previous posts, I briefly mentioned that I planned my monthly expenses to be around Rs. 50,000 per month. In this post, I want to explain a bit more on how I arrived at those numbers. May be it will help you figure out your own expenses in your retirement. Before nearing retirement I never kept a meticulous record of my expenses, but I was keeping track of where they are going in general. But come 2017 (a year before my retirement), I finally decided to sit and write down what I thought my expenses ought to … Continue reading “My Monthly Expenses Explained”

Life Insurance

Everybody needs a life insurance to protect their loved ones from financial hardships in the event that your time on the planet has unexpectedly come to an end. So I wanted to write a post about life insurance. The recommendations made in this post are for people who are planning early retirement. For others, it may not work. You requirements of life insurance will be different pre and post retirement.   Pre-retirement Life Insurance At any point in life before retirement, the amount of life insurance you need is the corpus that you would need at the time to support all … Continue reading “Life Insurance”

How to Choose a Financial Planner

If planning your finances in minute detail and researching investments that fit your goals and risk appetite is not your cup of tea, then it is better to hire a financial planner who will do the work for you. But how does one find a good adviser? What attributes make up a good financial planner? Here are some tips to help you get started.   Finding a Financial Planner The best way to find a planner is referrals from friends, colleagues or family. The financial planner should have been handling their finances, and they should be happy and satisfied with … Continue reading “How to Choose a Financial Planner”

Invest Across Market-caps for Better Returns

If you want better returns for your investments, choose to invest across market caps. Generally, choosing 2-3 good multi-cap funds is sufficient for most investors. However, if you want to be a bit more aggressive with your investments, add some small-cap and mid-cap funds. But how much? That is the question I will try to answer in today’s post.   Disclaimer: Information provided in this blog is to help educate you. I am not suggesting that is the right way to do it. Any names mentioned within the post are used only as examples, and should not be considered as … Continue reading “Invest Across Market-caps for Better Returns”

How to Choose a Mutual Fund

We’ve all heard it — don’t choose a mutual fund just based on past performance or star rating. Then, how does one go about choosing a good fund? That is the question I want to answer today. While I am not expert at picking a good mutual fund, I did have my share of bad pickings and hence have had some wisdom knocked into me. So here are some tips on how to choose a good mutual fund based on my experience.    Disclaimer: Information provided in this blog is to help educate you. I am not suggesting that is … Continue reading “How to Choose a Mutual Fund”

Are Index Funds Better Than Active Funds?

In the US, index investing is all the rage. John Bogle who started the first index fund, contends that an index fund beats almost all actively managed mutual funds (after accounting for fees) in the long run. But does it work in India? That was the experiment I set out to conduct in early 2012.   Disclaimer: Any mutual fund names discussed here are purely for the study of the experiment and not a recommendation. I may or may not have owned, or still own these funds at the time of writing this post.   What got me started? When I … Continue reading “Are Index Funds Better Than Active Funds?”

The Gilt Experiment

 You’ve probably heard about the inverse relationship between bond prices and interest rates. When interest rates rise, bond prices fall and vice-versa. How can we use this information to make some money without a lot of volatility? Read along about my experiment with interest rate cycles.   Disclaimer: I would not advice anyone to take risks like I am about to explain in this post. It is supposed to be more of a study rather than any recommendation or advice. Any mutual fund names discussed here are purely for the study of the experiment and not a recommendation.   The Entrance It … Continue reading “The Gilt Experiment”

Make Money Work For You

In my earlier post on How to Retire Early in Five Steps, I briefly touched upon asset allocation in step #3. In this post, I go into a bit more detail into how one should go about asset allocation for early retirement. Before understanding asset allocation, you need to understand asset classes. If you have not read my post on asset classes, head on over to that post.   Disclaimer: The asset allocations discussed here are only a suggestion, it may or may not work for you because your needs and requirements may be different from mine. Please work with your … Continue reading “Make Money Work For You”