Smart ways to invest and attain early financial freedom

Every now and then I meet people who tell me with a sense of pride that “I have never taken any loans and never will.” And on the other side of the spectrum, there are people in IT industry who have taken such large loans (for buying a premium apartment) that the EMI load is creating tensions in home, now that most IT companies are slowly downsizing. So here are my thoughts on taking loans. Loan by itself is not a good or bad loan. It becomes a good or bad loan based on: 1. Your ability to pay the EMI’s after taking the loans. A good loan is one where you can repay it without too much of liquidity issues. Your repayment capacity defines whether a loan is a good or

Meeting two such people in the same day is not normal – but I guess I was lucky to have had these meetings on the same day. Let me start with the story of the person with 98 flats – let us call him Ravi (that is not his real name). He is a simple soft spoken guy. Met him at a friend’s place. His father had bought four acres of agricultural land in the outskirts of Bangalore in 1991 at a cost of Rs 35,000 per acre (this was around my annual salary after my MBA in 1989 – so this investment was equivalent of my four year’s income then and I was in Bangalore in that period – so I could have also done the same if I had the foresight then). This land was bought purely for agricultural purposes and the family did farming in the land. Around 1995, the area where this land was situated became Electronic city. The govt acquired neighboring lands and allotted it to companies wanting to establish factories in that area- a few software companies too bought land and am

My readers would know that I had sold off all my stocks in Feb 2016 and entered gold through the ETF route – this was done as I feared a market crash due to China. My forecast was wrong (thankfully) and things improved from March onwards globally and there was a semblance of stability and small growth since then. Big investors like Soros and Druckenmiller had also moved to gold and predicted a China induced crash at that time. In the past 9 months- I have been sitting and seeing markets go up and select stocks zoom up and the stocks that I know well and had invested (and sold) had all zoomed up and were not in a price range to re-enter. My investments in gold in the meantime did OK - thanks to Brexit and the general volatility, I did appx 10% in the past 10 months. But I have been waiting in the side-lines to enter my favourite stocks for the past two months. The Trump win has given the opportunity that I have been waiting for. Thanks to Trump, global money i

Brexit was not expected – most people assumed that the British will vote to stay in the EU and hence when the results came out yesterday, there was shock and surprise. The dollar strengthened, the pound weakened and stock markets as usual over reacted and fell globally and gold rose by about 4-5%. But these are all reactions from a market that is full of traders who try to predict what will happen in short term and try to make money on a daily basis. In the long run, I believe that not much will change. Brexit does not mean that UK will stop being part of the global trade and that the British will close down their country and will become an Albania. Life will go on in the UK and over time they will untangle the mess and will live happily ever after. Having said that, one still needs to look at reasons for Brexit and see how it will impact us in the long run. Globally the gap between the rich and poor has increased in the last 50 years and with the tremendous

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My readers would know that I had in Q1 2015, bought a one-acre fam land in a community called Blooms Ecovillage. Here the farming work is out sourced to the developer of the community, who happens to be my friend Johny. For the past few months, I have been enjoying and sharing the fruits of nature without actually putting in too much hard work. This community now has appx. 30 likeminded people and a few more will join – there is a shortage of land already as the local farmers have raised the prices in the area and are not willing to sell. Here are some photos of the place:   This is me plucking tomatoes grown in my farm (this we distributed to all the friends we knew and still had more - ran out of friends to give it to :-))