Monday, April 16, 2007

Richness comes with stupidity

Which is the best way to save? To most people, they prefer to save in the bank which is considered to be safe and convenient.

Not for Ahmad, who saved his life saving in his own home, a wooden hut. Ahmad was a boatman residing in Batu Pahat where a river flows through. 40 years ago, there was no bridge built yet. The locals had to depend on boats or sampans to ferry across this river. Ahmad earned his livelihood by boating his sampan. Per crossing was only 10 cents per head.

30 years ago, the Malay Mail newspaper advertised in their headline; "Sampan man died with RM30,000 cash found in his hut." Ahmad was unmarried, he had ferried people across this river for 40 years. Each day with what ever collection left over in coins or notes, he would slip this cash into a big clay pot sunken to the ground in his wooden hut. He had no saving account what so ever with any bank or perhaps he did not trust any bank for a reason. Because he did not left any next of kin at death, the religion authority was instructed upon to clear his belongings. While they were at his wooden home, they were surprised by accident, found this huge amount of cash in the hidden pot. Not forgetting RM30,000 was a lot of money those days.

The joke was; if Ahmad would have kept his money in the bank plus interest, he might not have this much of saving compared to saving in his hidden pot. The logic is; can you save in the bank and not taking it out to spend for the next many years. With today's convenient of the ATM, practically one could withdraw cash at any time and at any place in town. The hidden pot offered no yearly interest to Ahmad, but he could only deposit and he could not withdraw. Because of the inconvenient of taking money from this big pot sunken under the ground, allowed him to save more and more gradually.

We would have laughed at him for his stupidity and innocent but he could also have laughed at us for being smarter but yet being poor. I had been telling this amazing story to many younger people. However we don't need to be like Ahmad to save by such a traditional and uncertain way. Neither should we be influenced by the temptation of the convenient to save in the bank. Today, we have the insurance products, where your saving is like hidden in the sunken pot. You save according to your mode and pattern. You plan in advance for the future and not to withdraw as and when you like. Your sincere and committed agents would help and monitor your progress. When you are doing well, your agents would encourage you to save more. If for some reasons, you do need to cash out your saving, your agents provide the ears to listen and offer alternative solution. Not forgetting again, by saving through insurance, it creates another estate over your investment. Perhaps, Ahmad was not so lucky then. Because nobody at that time had told him, Insurance was still the better option to save in the long run.

If you are a wage earner and want a sure way to save for the future, my recommendation is to seek a reliable life insurance agent, who would create a suitable plan for you.

"Happiness is a positive cash flow."

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