She soon found a guy who met her quality checklist – decent looking, well-educated and with good sense of humour. He is also a professional working in the financial industry.
They met for dinner after communicating online for some time.
He was friendly and interesting in person. They had some good conversations. Everything went well.
When it’s time for dessert, he asked whether she found herself overwork at times. She thought it’s a fact of life working hard to cope with high living expenses and to prepare for retirement.
He said he pitied ladies who have to toil all day with no work-life balance. He would never let his woman torn between work and family and sacrifice her health. He would support her financially so that she could enjoy her personal time with family, friends or hobbies and live a comfortable life.
He suddenly looked her in the eye and said, “I believe you are the one. If you let me take care of you, I can guarantee your happiness for many years to come.”
She was taken aback by his directness but was secretly happy that there is potentially someone out there she can rely on. She may even have the option to get out of the rat race.
“You can’t be rich working in a company your whole life. I can help you invest your savings, multiply your wealth till you achieve financial freedom. You know I am an expert in this and I can offer you professional advice for free.”
She found what he said makes sense.
I just have one question: Is Mr Right supporting her financially, let her spend his money and help her invest the leftover? Or is she being asked to hand over her hard-earned money for him to invest, wait for return from his investment, and support both of them (or only himself) financially?
Did you see the catch?
There may be love at first sight. But from my experience, it takes at least one year for the guy to pop the question. Doing so on the first date probably only happens in fairy tales.
Is this guy going out every other night, promising single ladies that he will provide for them and guarantee their happiness hereafter?
Wow, he is even more charitable than the Salvation Army!
If only we could make it compulsory for all guys to give and keep these kind of promises, at least we ladies in this country didn’t have to worry about our finances. And we are talking about both our finances and happiness are being taken care of for as long as we live.
Wow, that is even better than a CPF account!
If you read between the lines, the message is clear: I want your money. Give it to me. I will invest it and make you rich. This is your chance for financial freedom and happiness.
If you read it the other way round, the message is clear: It’s you who want financial freedom and happiness. You should know any investment carries risk. You should trust what I invest and whether I have really invested with your money. Once you have given me your money, the money is mine.
Give me your money and I’ll make you rich
When smart scammers want to cheat your money, they often pretend that they are helping you. They make you feel that you are the privileged, special and lucky ones so that you will give them your money obligingly.
Rather than helping you to make money, they are simply asking you to give them your money so that they can make money.
There are tons of online sponsored ads on get-rich-quick tricks, millionaire wealth secrets, stay-at-home earn passive income, etc. They are nothing but risky investment schemes and sheer gambling bets.
If the investment ideas are so brilliant, why are they not sold to institutional investors? Why would the marketers care to sell to retail investors like you and me?
Do you know how to identify con artists? Go read my earlier blog post “Useful tips to unmask the wolves’ sheep clothing”.
“Just because you don’t understand something doesn’t make it a good investment … the words ‘new venture’ sound to me like a loan that will never get paid back … They want your money, pure and simple, so they’ll have a chance to make money.”
– Donald Trump, Trump: Think Like a Billionaire
Why the poor are getting poorer
I recently read Robert T. Kiyosaki’s new book Why the Rich Are Getting Richer. He mentioned one silly question that people often ask.
“I have $10,000. What should I do with my money?”
Some people who plan to buy properties ask people around the same silly question too.
“I have $xxx,xxx. Which property should I buy with my money?”
Here’s the advice from Kiyosaki. “Please do not announce to the world that you are ‘clueless with money’. If you do not know what to do with your money, there are millions of people who will tell you what to do. In many cases what they’ll tell you is, ‘Give your money to me.’”
Many like to ask property agents or industry stakeholders self-answering questions: Is now the right time to buy?, Where do you see prices going?, Do you think the strong market will continue?, etc.
This is equivalent to asking for the seller’s opinion when you cannot make up your mind whether to buy that property or not. It is the same ridiculous situation when you are in the wet market and ask the fishmonger whether you should prepare fish for dinner tonight. Or step inside a slimming centre and ask the consultant whether you need to lose weight or not.
– Property Soul, No B.S. Guide to Property Investment
Remember Warren Buffet’s advice that you should “never ask a barber if you need a haircut”, and you should also never ask an insurance agent if you need to buy more insurance?
When the answer is always “yes”, why ask?
There are two reasons why the rich are getting richer but the poor are getting poorer:
1. The middle class struggle financially because they take advice from salespeople, not rich people.
2. The rich have smarter advisors than the poor and the middle class.
“A lot of people who try to sell you advice about your money are doing it to make money themselves.”
– Jim Cramer and Cliff Mason, Jim Cramer’s Stay Mad for Life: Get Rich, Stay Rich
Kiyosaki calls lousy advisors “high-paid losers”. There are many of them around. His advice for investors: To tell a smart advisor from a stupid one, you must know how to tell good advice from bad advice first.
Good advice is worth paying for. That’s why the rich are willing to pay a high fee for professional advice rather than going for those free talks.
“When you choose to rely on personal professional advice, put it in writing. During your conversations, take detailed notes. In follow-up, write the adviser a thank-you letter. In that correspondence, set a tone of appreciation for his or her helpful advice. Accent the adviser’s expertise, restate your understanding of the issues, and discuss what decision you plan to make that flows from the information the adviser provided … When you place advice in writing, you not only reduce the chance of error but also increase the chance of a satisfactory informal settlement or legal recovery.“
– Gary W. Eldred, Real Estate 101, Building Wealth with Real Estate Investments
Want to hear unbiased views and neutral advice on the property market with no sales pitch? Join us at the Reading Property Signs In the Year of the Dog education seminar cum luncheon on January 13. (Note: We don’t give free sales talk.)