Book Review: Lets Talk Money

Author: Monika Halan

  • Easy read. Talks about familiar concepts but in a very pragmatic manner. Simplifies a lot of concepts.
  • If you want deep details, this is not the book for you. I wanted to read this book and Richest Man in Babylon, before I moved on to my next read – Psychology of Money.
  • Some main points that I recall and stood out to me:
    • Set up your cash flow streams – have separate accounts for spend it and invest it – and set up transfers.
    • Life insurance and health insurance are very important
    • Separate out Life Insurance from investment. Just do term insurance. If you do not reap the payout, it is a good thing (nothing untoward happened). The premium is the money you pay to someone who is backing your risk.
    • Mutual funds are great. The book explains market cap and indices in simple language.
    • Index funds are one of the best investments if you do not want to be tracking your investment too deeply.
    • Physical gold and real estate are still popular mainly because of legacy reasons.
    • Having a roof over your head is great, but that should be it. Don’t go in for investment purposes.

I am glad that both of these books are of the same philosophy as I am (my belief is reaffirmed) that, at the right time of your life, when you can afford it, your own owned roof above your head is a good investment.

I do have a personal caveat for the age-old second property ownership debate – again – at the right time of your life, and if you can afford a second home and the property is at a good location to let it out for a decent rental, I think its a good investment. It earns for you.

Overall this book is a good breezy read. Surprised myself by finishing it off in a day. Concepts are much more lucidly explained with good relatable examples. I think the relatable is what differentiates it from other books. The examples it provides, such as the pushy insurance salesman, and the uncle buying a property because someone told him it would appreciate 3X, are scenes that we see in everyday life in India.

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