BROOKVILLE – About a dozen persons were milling around the Franklin County Security Center lobby just before 10 a.m. last Wednesday. They were waiting to

What is the single most effective piece of financial advice you’ve ever received?

As soon as I landed in Canada, I met one very young European guy, a little older than me, I was in the early ’20s, and he was in mid 20′s. This young man was fortunate and he like me came to Canada, penniless however he was pure genius.

Here is what he taught me:

1. New Car: Do not buy a new car unless it is such a great deal that it is too good to pass. ( A nicely maintained Demo, lightly used rental, A rear-ended accidental but no frame damage, and win a lottery. I was fortunate, when in 1980 Chrysler was in the bit of trouble, one dealership in Toronto auctioned off new cars. I was successful in getting one such beauty for a reasonable price. The vehicle was Aspen, and the price at the auction was much lower than the used car. My family and I enjoyed that car for a good 14 years with TLC.

Not to brag: In case you are willing to work hard, you may get a car/s “ upper fixer” and live happily ever after.

2. Credit Rating: Never spoil your credit score at any cost.

3. Insurance Rating: Never spoil your insurance rating at all

4. Drink and Drive: Never drink and drive.

Also: Do not drink at office parties even if you self-employed be extra careful and misbehave, it may end up your career/business., You may suffer financial blow you may not recover forever. I have seen a few cases like this.

Also: Never tell dirty jokes at work environment, it may finish you too.

Also: Never start a love affair/side gig/ at work/business. It is almost may end in disaster in a family, work and financial life. For example, Some medical doctors lost their licenses it is not a myth, some landlords gained a bad reputation, and so on…Never mix business and pleasure, these two mixes are very lethal. Keep your love life; alcohol, dirty jokes separate ate from the job/business. You may get a few laughs at your jokes at work, but you are not hired to act like a clown/joker and buffoon. Kiss it goodbye to higher positions or business.

5. Never pay Rent*: Never pay rent for a living, buy your own even if it is a shack.

Special Note*: (One viewer pointed out, in some places renting is better, and I must mention in temporary/uncertain situations in life, renting is the only choice). In such a case, try your best to invest in some real estate.

6. Economic/Frugal: Live frugal as much as you can. The more you sacrifice at a young age, the more you and your family will reap benefits in the old age.

This young man my mentor had the wisdom of Warren Buffet he advised me almost the same thing but in different words:

do not save what is left after spending:

7. Pay off the debt and stay debt free*: Pay off the house even if it is a hut, a car also it is a rundown junk, and keep enough money for food for your young wife and two little monkeys. And stay debt free if you can for rest of your life.

*Special note: Debt free means no loan/mortgage on principal house/car/

In case you do not have these liabilities bank looks at you very favorably and you can borrow for business with more ease.

Debt free means just do not put yourself in debt for a vacation, of course, you have to borrow money for the business.

8. Cut down invisible bonds if you can (9 to 5 job): Now you have cut down all the burdens by paying a debt. You are a free man, now show the world your real stuff made of hard and smart work. Find your strength, weakness and weigh your aims and aspirations, and find your path of working for yourself.

Well, this 9 to 5, Monday to Friday, your mind is all wired for routine. Very few may become wealthy working for others, but most of us would end their lives with mediocre living.

You may or may not grow affluent working for yourself, but you have a better chance of making it.

9. Once you do the above: Now work even harder, than before. Kick some real action/s in life, save money big time and invest very wisely.

10. Never go superfluous*: At weddings, birthdays, and other so-called parties and celebrations.

Latest birthday celebration: I baked the cake, decorated it, for my wife, (total cost ten Canadian dollars), she loved this birthday surprise. As said earlier, we found happiness does not come spending too much money but expressing real love/affection for the family and each other. BTW, this case is fat and sugar-free, guilt-free and we both ate it to the last bite.

Celebrating my wife’s birthday, you do not need a crowd to cheer, you do not need fancy, decorations, cakes and screamers. All you need respect, real feelings and an effort in the Kitchen to bake a very healthy cake without sugar and fat. I used mostly drained Ricotta Cheese, very few raisins, a bit of flour, a few egg whites and baked it.

When the boys were growing up, we celebrated their birthday with home baked cake and no big drama.

A total Waste: Except for parents/grandparents/wife/husband/son/grandson direct blood relation, no one gives a damn, eat drink and leave dirty dishes for you to clean. We did that one and found out it was a total waste of time and money. Goodbye to such nonsense except our immediate family. The tremendous amount of food/drinks wastage, people usually bring one bottle of beer/drink and take a few sips and drop it there. Go and get another one, you do the math of plates and plates full of food overfilled due to greed, then unfinished and left over. Goodbye, thank you, no more. Young girls/women all dolled up, and sit on the chairs, like celebrities with an attitude you invited us what you can do for me? Men were usually busy in talking politics, and half drunk was no help either. We all members of the family running around, serving and taking care of half drunks. Now there was a significant job of clean up, and a tremendous amount of was

Goodbye to Parties: Goodbye to parties forever and an enormous amount of waste of resources and money without one cent worth of benefit.

Goodbye to False Dramas: Only for the false glory of a few minutes /hours or a day, some young families carry the financial burden for years. MONEY PROBLEMS” is one of the main reasons for unhappy marriage and divorce. You may have fireworks at the wedding but a wildfire in your marriage later on.

Real Love/Affection /Feelings do not Need Drama: One heart transmits, and the other receives the right signals, try, it works. When at our lean times, I used to bring glass bangles, and hand-spun clothing (Khadi suits) for my wife she still enjoys it and remembers our time of pure love for each other.

Special Note*: It does not mean we live like “ bums” and penny pinching miserable ways, she has her way of investments and treating herself appropriately where she sees a good value for our money. So is right for our sons and grandsons.

11. Education is the best investment*: He(my European mentor) strongly advised me to go back to the university to get a Canadian degree. My wife also followed my example and trained for another profession of Nursing.

My mentor said: No matter what invest and put every effort in the education of your kids, according to him it is the very and ultimate investment.

Special Note*: Money saved and not squandered away when your son/daughter gets admission to Ivy league with over 55,000 US dollar tuition, you do not freak out. Education is going to be even more expensive; parents must have help otherwise the kid is not going to come out of college loan for a long time.

12. Try to finish your child’s education as quickly as you can putting them on a fast track: One of our boys was incredibly hard working and smart, he completed his high school three years ahead of time. At 20 he was fully qualified Electrical Engineers, the going rate in Canada for that qualification was 50 thousand a year in the late 90 s. Since he finished three years ahead of time and started working, 150,000 Canadian dollars put in a bank, will give him more or less somewhere 10 to 19 million at the date of retirement.

13. My family and I never looked back: We all lived extremely frugal, the second generation became even more careful, and the third generation of our two monkeys 3 and 5 ask the economics of going to a fun park.

14. Financial wisdom starts very early on*:

*My five years old grandson asked me the other day: Grandpa why don’t we play in the backyard with you, and grandma and mom can make pizza here at home. Why do we have to waste money at the fun park? Both boys are taught how to put money in the piggy bank, and they are both in a competition who has more. They both sit down and count almost every day. When asked what are you going to do with this money, the older one was quick to point out: Put it in the bank, mom/dad say it grows faster there.

Special note*: This is not starving you and your family from a beautiful experience of the outside world, eating out and worldly exposure. The point here is kids must understand the value of money and saving. BTW, these two children have seen a fair bit by the time one is five, and the other is three. They have traveled extensively, know about eating out, and every weekend is a new venture

The Best Way to Bank Your Kid’s Savings

No doubt training starts at the birth, sure these kids learned from their mother and father (our 2nd generation).

Special note*: Here the idea is to teach a kid value of money than to buy sugar loaded candies at a convenience store. Bank deposit/investment comes later.

“Remember the laugh we had when we traveled together to Hong Kong and decided to get lunch at McDonald’s? You offered to pay, dug into your pocket, and pulled out … coupons!” writes Bill. Warren Buffett once bought Bill Gates lunch at McDonald’s with coupons

Do wealthy people look for discounts?

For further readings:

10 Frugal Celebrities Who Love Clipping Coupons

Further readings;

Suryateja Rokkam’s answer to What are some of the most mind-blowing facts about the top 1% wealthiest people?

I have seen only two people per sure confirmed who is not “ cheap” one is God, and the other was drunk. In this world almost everyone like saves money but they do not like the label “ Cheap.” Honestly, our family does not care you can call me or us “Cheap” “Frugal” or “Economical” “ Penny Saver.”

15. Stay away from all criminal activities: Even a slight misbehavior or mistake or stupidity such as minor shoplifting will create a lifetime of a black spot against the name. Once someone has terrible credit, insurance, and even minor criminal offense, the story is almost over in Canada/USA. Might as well pack and come home, it is a more or less end of future. To keep these records immaculate are the precursors for financial success in these countries.

16. You want to get ahead and have very secure old age, leave a legacy for your next generations of actions, useful life, and financial security.

Do the followings when you are young.

My family and I were ridiculed, made fun of, our kids not wearing designer(labels)/ clothes, not eating out too often, not too much dancing around on useless parties and functions). It is a strange coincidence last night our son gave one of the best compliment to my wife and me: Mom and dad, you gave us the very best training in managing our finances. Thank you, mom and dad.

*Do not worry about the ridicule: In the end, you will have the last laugh. When you kids and grandkids look at bright future with super education and financial security, then you will see your future bright clear and worth it.

a. Get yourself a freezer, when the food is the season, process your own and preserve it.

b. Look for bargains in food/clothing (end of a season) items are sometimes give away.

c. Teach your kids/grandkids value of money, investment, savings. Food buying, processing, cooking at home, packing a brown bag.

d. Teach your kids/grandkids very healthy eating, exercise and outshine in school, real hobbies, working with others.

e. Before you jump around and buy brand new, look around for used one first

f. When we around the world is full of opportunities, increase your incomes, part-time jobs, weekend work, starting a small business.

g. Create your opportunities, growing up in India, in those days money was extremely tight. This example is not bragging or beat my chest. My childhood friend was incredibly innovative, another angel in my life, this is what we did to fend off very tight situation for our personal needs.

1. We always found work on summer vacation.

2. My friend and I watched one science program it was a live show, he fired our brain about small gadgets (Hans Raj Wireless). We got a lot of ideas from that show, in grade 7, my friend and I started assembling cigarette lighters(Electric) for Pan Shops in Chandigarh. Before that, they used to have a burning /smoldering rope to light cigarettes. It is a long story about design and first blow up and then modifications, but the excellent outcome in the end.

3. From there we started installing ceiling fans.

4. It graduated to doing tuition by the time we were in http://B.Sc.

5. We also ventured in making paper bags for grocery stores.

6. We both had reasonably good clothes, eat out once in a while, and could afford good lunch at the college/school. And going to a traditional coffee house in Sector 17 Chandigarh (India) was not a huge problem. We always had enough change with our odd jobs here and there.

7. We both treated ourselves right with a healthy dose of Indian movies.

Our both boys adopted the same skills, of working part-time, excellent with tools, hard work, fixing things and being creative. I hope this trend continues to the third generation.

Special note*: Here the idea is to buy smart at the right time not to starve/live like bums, but to buy things at the right time.

Disclaimer: One viewer pointed out, our grandkids and we are missing out seeing the world. Well, that is not true. By the time they are sixteen, I estimate there will not much-civilized world left for them to see.

( One viewer pointed out “some people might get turned away by the suggestion of extreme austerity.” This example is not to brag or show off; our preferences are different from investing and spending money.)

Our two grandsons, five and three, are the two most precious jewels for us, and we are making sure to provide, as much as we can.

We all are different, and our preferences for spending, dreams, aspirations, and aims are different. One of my childhood dreams was to explore China and its great civilization. My wife and I had the desire to explore specific mysteries of the world, one was the “ Hanging Coffins of China, ” and the other is to visit top ten Hindu/Buddhist temples in the world before dying.

Chongqing Harbor, China

Chongqing, China

Xian: visiting China, Terracotta Army in Xian China.

The author took this picture when he and his wife visited one of the fantastic things on the earth.

In case someone is interested to read or know about it more. Here is the link for further studies.

Terracotta Army in China (terracotta army in China)

Picture taken by the Author: This is called Pit 1, Xian of Terracotta Army.

Chongqing China

Three Gorges China, one of the most beautiful places on the earth.

Our two grandsons three and five, I am very hopeful by the time they are 16 they most likely would have seen almost all the civilized world.

My wife and I in search of “ Hanging coffins in China.”

This “Hanging Coffins” is one of the mysteries of the modern world, how did these coffins were taken and stacked in the cliffs. Once National Geographic did a documentary on these “coffins.” Since then we wanted to visit these sites, it took over 20 to 30 years to realize our dream.

The author took these pictures of “Hanging Coffins of China.” His wife and the author, usually undertake some challenging and educational tours. In case someone is interested to read more: Please explore the following link. This example is in response, to a viewer who asked what do you do with savings?

Hanging coffins – Wikipedia (Hanging coffins – Wikipedia)

At the Great Wall of China:

Author and his wife realized a life long dream when they visited the Grand Buddha of Ling Shan, China, the most massive statue 88 meters high, tallest in China.

The Author’s wife is touching Lord’s palm, which is considered to be a great blessing.

This example is not to brag, or being arrogant; one viewer sincerely expressed that living so frugal and penny-pinching we are missing out on so many things in life.

Well, in my humble opinion we do know foods/we do a fair bit of the world/, and we do enjoy the life in our ways.

My wife and I in Beijing in World famous restaurant known for Beijing Roasted Duck.

Next dream:

To visit the World famous temple.

Angkor Wat. ( the biggest Hindu/Buddhist) temple ever built in the world.

Angkor Wat. ( the biggest Hindu/Buddhist) temple ever built in the world.

Angkor Wat (Khmer: អង្គរវត្ត or “Capital Temple”) is a temple complex in Cambodia and the largest religious monument in the world, with the site measuring 162.6 hectares (1,626,000 sq meters).[1] It was originally constructed as a Hindu temple for the Khmer Empire, gradually transforming into a Buddhist temple toward the end of the 12th century.[2] It was built by the Khmer King Suryavarman II[3] in the early 12th century in Yaśodharapura (Khmer: យសោធរបុរៈ, present-day Angkor),

Angkor Wat – Wikipedia

A few words in the end:

It is all about sacrifices so that your old age and coming generation have financial security. The whole family has to work together, and towards a better future.

Warren Buffett Quotes

Higher education and professional degrees are going to even more expensive. The real estate is touching sky high already unless the new generation learns this money management from early stages, life could be very tough.

Also, for ordinary people like us, living frugal and saving money, and try to fulfill life time’s dream is/was the only way. I always wanted to learn flying but sacrificed that dream for my son. I thought we would get more enjoyment out of it if our son went to earning pilot’s license than me. He received the flying license before he could get a driving license.

Our son, preparing for his first solo flight, at the age of 16–17, Ajay Arora, at the Buttonville Airport Toronto.

Fast Forward: Our son Ajay Arora, flying over California, upgrading his pilot

license. May/2017

Background: My wife and I are Indo-Canadians, we are here in a few years be 50 years, we are blessed with two now grown up sons and two grandsons.

My wife and I came to this country with eight dollars (my total asset) and my wife I believe had 500 Canadian dollars, which her parents gave her. It was early 70 s. It was a very long and hard journey. But the advice of young European was my guiding principle in life, and still, it is for the second generation, and we hope this wisdom would continue to the third generation and more extended.

My wife and I, did our best to gain Canadian education and Experience:

My wife, R.N., C.D.E., our son Ajay Arora, B.E(E.E.), M.E.(E.E.) MBA(Harvard) Class of 2008, Ayan(Grandson), Ajit Arora, the second son, B.E.(E.E.)LLB, Sam Arora (M.Sc), Punjab, M.Sc (M.Sc). Guelph, Canada, Amy Seth Arora, MBA(Harvard) class of 2008. We all are gainfully employed, and my wife and I have no plans to retire so far our health allows it.

16. The Very Best Investment on the Earth (I believe) this is the real investment.

“The greatest legacy one can pass on to one’s children and grandchildren is not money or other material things accumulated in one’s life, but rather a legacy of character and faith”. Billy Graham
Grandchildren Quotes – BrainyQuote

Try to raise educated, polite, humble, down to earth, law-abiding Grand Kids who could bring a great name to the country of their birth, adopted lands, land of their ancestors. These kids must be taught to keep the great cultural, religious and respect for everyone around and take it to next horizon, I believe is the best

A few surprises

  • There is no quick way to get rich scheme, if there is/was it has been taken by the free ones and secondly only scam artists can do it. There is no such method I have been looking around; I did not find any.
  • That sweet talking neighbor/sales person /acquaintance/friend of a friend/ may not be as good as you thought.
  • In case something walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it is indeed a duck and not a swan.
  • All the beautiful things such as cheap real estate, huge bargains, and fire sales if there are any, they are not for you. Such items may exist but usually, most of the times inside people grab it. To achieve that status of the inside group, it is a long process.
  • What is the answer to safeguarding yourself? Do your due diligence in the modern world, have a set of eyes in the back of your head too.
  • Once you are done the above, please browse through these frauds also please click the link below, so that you keep your hard earned money in your pocket for you and your family.
  • Last but not least, when kids are young, make super sure they do not fall into the wrong company. Never allow overnight stay, unless you are there and the kids sleep in your room, safe and secure. Leaving kids overnight is a huge risk for the kids, never let that happen. All your money/saving will be gone if one of your kid is scared of life.
  • All your hard work will go in flames with one sick kid/grandkid. Guard your kids/grandkids against all evils ( some or tremendous amount damage may be done by people you trust such as older cousin/so-called uncle/and cunning aunt), protect your dear ones especially kids/grandkids like a lioness does for hers. Teach them the value of “ MONEY |” from day one. I have seen the other side if you do not.