Part two of two-part series: “Solutions for a Roller Coaster Marketplace”
Debt is the catalyst for all financial woes – for individuals and the aggregate economy in the United States and globally, esteemed associate Joey Tamer astutely reminds us.
To illustrate, she asserts the first credit card issued by Bank of America enticed baby boomers into using credit for immoderate purchases. We now know the card as Visa.
She says financial institutions and governments created low interest rates to trigger spending in the 1980s. In about 2005, Ms. Tamer reminds us how the housing bubble began to swell as banks loaned money for marginally qualified home buyers.
When Ms. Tamer talks, clients profit. She’s a strategic consultant to entrepreneurs in technology and digital media, and to experienced consultants in all fields to maximize their practices.
Long after the Great Recession ended, she painfully reiterates an obvious point – “Defending ourselves against economic downturns.”
Joey Tamer, www.joeytamer.com
To paraphrase, Ms. Tamer offers six values for you to avoid financial traps.
1. Avoid debt. “My father, a successful, self-made entrepreneur, taught me that I couldn’t have something I couldn’t pay for,” she writes. “He didn’t even have a mortgage, buying our beautiful home for cash. Don’t go into debt for anything you cannot cover if the loan fails, or that you cannot do without.”
2. Stay in your budget. “There is a great freedom that comes from owing nothing to nobody,” she states. “Without seeming either old-fashioned or conservative (I am neither), there is great freedom of choice in not being beholden (now there’s an old-fashioned word!) to the Big Bank, the Government, the landlord, or your brother.”
3. Be pragmatic about banks, insurance companies and government. “Banks, insurance companies, the government don’t care about you or your individual woes,” she suggests. “Each is driven by its own bottom line: to make profits, to avoid claims (and therefore make profits), and to get re-elected (and therefore to gain power, for good or no).
“If you look calmly at the motivation of any institution, you will learn to protect yourself. You will not be indebted to the Bank, because it can call your loan at any moment, and will only lend you money when you don’t really need it and can prove you can pay it back. You will take painstaking steps to document what you own that the Insurance Company claims to be covering (because if the claim comes due, they will want detailed proof you owned it all, in order to pay). When you vote—yes, you should vote every time as you get the government you elect – do not listen to the rhetoric, look at the voting record. Do those votes reflect what you believe in?”
4. Beware of con artists. “Try to remember, the most charming person can be a theatrical persona, if you do not know him (or her),” she warns. “And also remember, if a deal is too good to be true, it likely isn’t.”
5. Save money. “Truth is, you don’t know when the next economic or industry crisis will hit,” she cautions. “And if you see it coming, you can do some avoidance or damage control, but you probably can’t prevent it or fix it. You can only take care of you and yours, and a buffer of capital solves a lot of problems, and creates freedom and new options that do not exist without the buffer.
“Make a simple savings plan and stick to it.”
6. Keep smiling. “Now, I don’t mean to say the world is full of bad guys,” she writes. “There are lots of wonderful people and companies and institutions and causes in the world.”
As usual, easy-to-understand observations by Ms. Tamer. Certainly, I agree on all six values.
And my sense is that No. 3, “Be pragmatic about banks, insurance companies and government,” is especially good to remember. I’ve long complained about the predatory habits of banks. Personally, in insurance claims that I’ve filed with a leading insurance company, each time has been a hassle. As for government largesse, you can see my watchdog thoughts in this portal’s Public Policy category.
From the Coach’s Corner, see Options to Navigate This Marketplace Bedlam – part 1 of this two-part series: “Solutions for a Roller Coaster Marketplace.”
“Some debts are fun when you are acquiring them, but none are fun when you set about retiring them.”