Having money doesn’t always make you rich. How often have you noticed that the people with the most money tend to be the ones who hate spending it most? This wouldn’t surprise Sandeep Ghosh, a British born wealth management consultant based in Dubai and the author of Waking up to Wealth, Keeping control of your finances.
He asks a very simple question: why, when we have demanded and got control over our own money, so few of actually know how to manage our own finances? Or as he says, “Why do we allow personal debt to spiral out of control?”
Ghosh believes that the first step is to understand the psychological barriers and behavior that stop people taking care of their finances.
Today our daily routine is hypnotic yet regimented from the moment we wake up to the moment we sleep at night. We sleep to function, function to work, work to earn, earn to live, live to split our time between career and family, and then back to bed.
If this sounds more like a self-help book, well, in many ways it is. Ghosh is not your average self-help author. He is a member of the U.K.’s Chartered Insurance Institute and the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment and a wealth management consultant in London and Dubai.
British-born but currently based in Dubai, surrounded by High Net Worth Individuals, Ghosh has seen how easy it is to accumulate wealth while failing to plan for the future, particularly for ex-pats. Salaries are comfortable and the cost of living is low and expenses like healthcare, travel and children’s education are usually included.
But one day, the party has to stop. It is then, he says, that pension fund and medium-term savings shortfalls often become clear, as well as inadequate funds for children’s education, emergencies, critical illness cover and so on.
Swap the location for Lisbon or London or anywhere, ex-pat for everyone else, and you have a pretty universal problem. Ghosh says that 70% of people in the western world fail in their financial planning.
Ghosh explains in a simple and unpatronizing way how to budget and what to expect from a financial adviser, as well as a few simple financial planning concepts like risk. One practical tip is to keep your financial records in order, labeled clearly. You might think this sounds obvious: but it is failing to neglect all the aspects of financial husbandry that lands so many otherwise wealthy people in trouble.
This book is aimed at those readers who don’t open letters from banks, insurance companies and so on (I hope my kids are reading this) or who abdicate control of their personal finances to a husband/wife/partner/child/parent. Do you have no time to look after your own finances? Are you scared of doing so? Do you want a financial adviser but don’t know what to expect? If so, this handy little book is for you.