Gold is often described by many as the “barbarous relic” of the past. It’s a favourite phrase of gold-bashers everywhere trying to make gold the object of derision. Even legendary investor Warren Buffett criticized gold this way: "It gets dug out of the ground in Africa or someplace. Then we melt it down, dig another hole, bury it again and pay people to stand around guarding it. It has no utility. Anyone watching from Mars would be scratching their head." Gold not only doesn't earn you interest, you even need to pay storage cost for your gold. Furthermore, many speculators got burnt speculating gold. The long-term total returns of gold are not that fantastic and therefore should have discouraged most investors.
Indeed, gold is one of those investments that attracts extreme viewpoints. Are there still good enough reasons to include gold as part of your investment portfolio? Or should you just forget about investing in gold altogether and focus on other investment vehicles instead?
Whenever I hear Warren Buffett speaks or read his annual letters to the shareholders at Berkshire Hathaway, there are always words of wisdom to be found. After all, he is the Oracle of Omaha, one of the most successful businessmen of the 20th century, and consistently rated as one of the wealthiest people in the world.
Warren Buffett has continually shared bits and pieces of his investment philosophy through a lifetime of memorable quotes where he uses simple, jargon-free language when referring to business and investments. There's much to learn from the quotes and quips by the legendary billionaire investor, which have exerted great influence over my own investment strategies as well. In this blog post, I have compiled 20 of the best insightful quotes from Warren Buffett.
Recently, I was going through my financial statements and realized that in 2011, I incurred expenses of more than $1 million dollars in cash within 11 months! Now, you must be wondering whether I had been jet-setting around the world, purchased a sparkling new Lamborghini, or bought an exotic holiday home. No, no, no, I did none of these! I spent the money on another 3 new investment properties to expand my property portfolio instead.
Am I crazy? Well, I didn’t regret my decision as all the 3 properties have appreciated in value since with a combined value in excess of $2.85 million. What’s more, the additional properties have been generating good rental yields for me since 2011. Would you call anyone crazy if he or she spends a million today for an asset that brings you cash flow and could increase significantly in value in the future? You probably would invest every cent that you have on that asset, wouldn’t you? However, no one has a crystal ball to tell if a property would rise in value or would fetch good rental returns in the future. The truth is that many people get burnt in buying investment properties. Really, most people don’t make it in real estate investing. They don’t succeed in making money out of their properties as they are not doing the things that should be done, and the reason is they don’t know what should be done in the first place!
Property prices in Singapore have been rising rapidly for the last few years. Investors’ sentiments on local properties remained upbeat even after 8 rounds of cooling measures implemented by the government. While the latest round of cooling measure (announced by the Monetary Authority of Singapore on 28 June 2013) has taken a toll on property transaction volume, the demand for Singapore properties remain strong.
We are currently at the peak of the Singapore property cycle since 1965, with residential property prices at an all-time high. Despite the sky-high prices, there are no shortages of investors snapping up local properties. These investors are now paying for prices many years ahead, making it near impossible to have decent investment returns. Many are still buying and hoping to cash out the capital gains on their properties within the next 3-5 years. So, are these buyers investing or are they gambling?
Monopoly, the world’s most popular board game, has for years entertained millions of people with the imaginary thrill of what it is like to be a real estate tycoon. I started playing Monopoly at a tender age of seven. At that time, playing the board game was just pure fun. Little did I realize that the game actually taught me valuable lessons which would become useful for my future property investment ventures!
We are currently facing tough economic times. We get bombarded by overwhelming confirmation of rising debt and unemployment when flipping through the pages of newspapers, watching the news over television or listening to the news on radio every day. Governments all over the world are facing challenging times in their quest to address the country's economic problems. People are extending their retirements due to zero or insufficient savings. And more bad news seems to be added by the various media daily!
What can you do when confronted with such tough times? You can’t control what the world will become, but you certainly can control how you manage your finances. Hence, taking action to secure your financial future should become one of your top priorities in life. While money doesn’t grow on trees, it can certainly grow if you save and invest prudently. Saving and investing are keys to growing your wealth in order to ensure your future financial success.
The property market in Singapore has been heating up for quite some time. Recent news reported that Singapore properties are still being snapped up despite the sky-high prices. Real estates remain a favorite asset class of investment for both Singaporeans and foreigners alike despite the current uncertain economic times. It is no wonder that so many property investment seminars are popping up everywhere to take advantage of this property craze!
Advertisements with headlines such as “How to Invest in Properties with Little or No Money,” “How to Buy 10 Properties for the Price of 1” and “How You Can Make Millions in Properties with No Money Down in Just 24 Months” are common and frequent in the newspapers. The messages tout that property investment is the fastest and easiest route for anybody who wish to become extremely wealthy. There are of course disclaimers (in very fine prints at the bottom of these advertisements) stating that all investments carry risks and may not be suitable for everybody. But how many potential investors take notice of such disclaimers cautioning them on the risks involved? Buyers beware - if an investment opportunity sounds too good to be true, it probably is!
I've always wanted to be a successful entrepreneur since young. At that time, I didn't know how to be successful and what being an entrepreneur entailed. While still a student in secondary school, I remembered my economics teacher asking me in class: "Kelvin, what is an entrepreneur?" I remembered just giving her a blank stare, unable to provide any answer. I really don't have a clue! Fast forward to today, with my many years of experience in the corporate and business world, I've finally learned what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur.
Kelvin Wong is a millionaire investor, author, and landlord in 3 countries. He currently owns a multi-million dollar property portfolio in Singapore, Australia and Malaysia. With his assets generating multiple streams of income to sustain his desired lifestyle, Kelvin became financially free at 39. He holds a Bachelor of Business (Dean's List) degree and a Diploma in Business Management. Kelvin writes about building wealth and achieving financial freedom in his free time.
Copyright © 2011 Kelvin Wong
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