BC Storm 2016 and Carbon Tax

BC Storm 2016 and Carbon Tax

It’s snowing again today! It’s beautiful!
Do we really need carbon tax? It’s really cold. Is there really global warming?
Also I don’t want to pay more tax :(

Personal Finance Cartoon Series: 5 Cs of Credit

5 Cs of Credit CartoonWhen you apply for credit (eg loan/mortage/line of credit/credit card) the bank wil measure your 5Cs of Credit.

5Cs of Credit in a nutshell (no, there is no “C”uteness)

  • Capacity
    Measures if you’re borrowing too much or not. It measures the amount of debt and income you have. Are you able to comfortably pay back all debts?
  • Capital
    Measures your savings, investments, and other assets that can help you pay back the loan.
  • Character
    Measures your track record with debt.  Your credit score is checked.  Your credit score is mainly determined by your credit history which show if there’s anything outstanding that went to collection or if you are slow at paying back or frequently skip payments. Check your credit history periodically to make sure you haven’t forgotten about anything.
  • Collateral
    This is like a backup if you end up failing to pay the loan – eg for a car loan your car is the security. The banks can take your car.
  • Conditions
    Lenders want to know why you are borrowing. A lender may be more likely to approve a loan with a specific purpose like for a house (mortgage) or a car, rather than for a loan that can be used for anything.

Personal Finance Cartoon Series: Year-End Bonus

First Year End Bonus Cartoon

After I graduated from university, I lived back home and luckily I didn’t have to pay rent or pay back a student loan. So I just saved bonuses as cash.  Looking back, I could’ve started investing in the stock market, but those concepts are new to me.

If I were a millennial now, with lots of student loan, if I get a lump sum cash (like a year end bonus), I would:

(1) Save it as cash if I don’t have any emergency savings
(2) Make a lump sum payment to a loan with a highest interest
(3) If there’s anything left over, invest
(4) Treat yourself with a cupcake

What did you do with your very first year end bonus?
I remember buying a very nice hat for my mom but she never wore it. I am the worst shopper.

Credit Card is Convenient

Credit Card is Convenient

I drew the cartoon above first but it didn’t make much sense (a homeless person can’t afford to be a credit card using merchant), so I rewrote it. Here’s the second version:
Credit Card Merchant fee Cartoon

Credit cards are convenient, but they can be very expensive. If you are a consumer, paying with credit card is convenient, but if you don’t pay off the balance every month, you will get charged outrageous interest fee to the bank (21%! That’s why banks love giving you credit cards. It’s a great investment for them.)

And, if you are getting a credit card for the first time, make sure you shop round, try to get the one that gives you some kind of reward. Look for the one that you will get the most out of, matching your spending pattern. For example, if you shop lot at a particular store, they might have a credit card that gives you lots of bonus point everytime you shop there.

If you are a merchant, you will get charged merchants transaction fees. Walmart recently stopped accepting Visa because the fees are too high.  And a lot or people tend to overspend using credit card than hard cold cash.  If you watch Gail Vaz-Oxlade’s show, “Money Moron” or “Til Debt Do Us Apart”, you see many couples spend way beyond their means and have excess credit card debt (interest rate on credit cards are outrageous). So the shock treatment Gail uses on them is to make them pay everything only by cash.

Holiday season is starting, watch out for maxing out on your credit card! Set a goal and budget and stick to it.

Personal Finance Cartoon Series – Financial Freedom

Financial Freedom


We all want financial freedom…or do we?

If you are new to Personal Finance, here is the list of books I recommend:
1. The Richest Man in Babylon

Talks about many personal finance topics from insurance to investing, with stories set in ancient Babylon.
2. The Millionaire Next Door: The Surprising Secrets of America’s Wealthy

It’s not the high income earners like doctors and investment bankers who are the millionaires – they are often in debt because they spend beyond their means. Your humble neighbour, with the right mindset, could be a hidden millionaire. Talks about what traits are seen in the millionaire. You would’ve never guessed.

3. Rich Dad Poor Dad: What The Rich Teach Their Kids About Money That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not!

If you didn’t grow up talking about money with your parents, this is a good start.

BONUS: For Women: Smart Women Finish Rich: 9 Steps to Achieving Financial Security and Funding Your Dreams

The sassy title made me pick up this book. Lots of good examples, particularly recommend to those who just landed a job out of school. It is a practical guide that shows you what to do with the money you earn to finish rich. The concept is not that hard (but practise…that’s the hard part…hence self help books help with personal finance)