Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Chinese Money

When I was new in this country I received many welcome and unwelcome advise for new immigrant, most of them came from the Chinese friends around us, most of them about money. Over the years I've accumulated a few more.

Some interesting ones:
- Get a stable job that generates steady income (doctors and lawyers, remember?)
- There is no free lunch. If someone buys you a lunch, he either benefits from you (the car salesman that got $500 commission from the sale) or wants something from you (the hiring manager desperate to fill the open req for a job requires working 80 hours a week for the first six months).
- Get a credit card six months after getting the steady job. Before that you may risk being declined and have a bad mark on the credit history.
- Make sure the credit card does not charge a monthly fee, even better, get one that pays reward points. No matter how good the name, if they charge you, dump it. Always shop around.
- Keep the credit account active to create credit history, but pay off the balance every month. Don't let the banks make money on you with those interests and fees.
- The only debt you should carry is your mortgage. Save money and buy everything else with cash, including cars.
- Buy, don't rent. Mortgage is money you pay to yourself. Rent goes to other people and you'll never see it again.
- Never live beyond your means. Always have your bookkeeping in your mind -- have a good idea of your monthly income and expenses, know how much each item costs. Save for the rainy days.
- Think before each purchase. Do I really need it? 9 out of 10 times you don't. Build a relationship with your money and make parting ceremonial.
- Take a little risk once in awhile and get it out of your system. Go to Tahoe or Vegas, buy some stocks, buy lottery, invest in a start up. Be prepared you'll never see the money again.


Anonymous said...

The advice I remember hearing the most (and have lived by) is "stay in the market for the LONG HAUL...just ride out the ups and downs, never pull out! will work to your advantage if you stick with it!"

oops...maybe not so much! Heard today that the market is lower than it was TEN YEARS AGO! Oh well...

Diane said...

All good advise.

Jennifer said...

The second from the bottom is one we try really hard to implement around here - especially with tween boys who "need" everything they see. It also came in very handy this weekend in NY :)