Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Muntinlupa's "Bring Your Own Bag" - BYOB campaign

A city ordinance that took effect last January 18, 2011 banning the use of plastic bags in Muntinlupa City was widely the topic of most people during the past few days. This was so far the boldest move a city did to address climate change.

We know for a fact that plastic bags contribute a lot in the degredation of our environment. Eventhough people are aware of the bad effects of not recyling and burning plastic bags they still unconciously dump the bags. Maybe because there is no law that prohibits the improper use of it.

I salute the city government of Muntinlupa for implementing such rule. I hope and pray that all city govenments and municipalities do the same.

~Till then.

Sunday, January 23, 2011


Recently, we celebrated my sister’s birthday in one of the best places for pizza and pasta – the Napoli Pizzeria Ristorante in Timog.

I’ve never tasted seafood pizza and pesto so goodah!

Napoli is located at the ground floor of Imperial Palace Suites in Timog, Quezon City. It’s worth the visit.

Here are some of the photos to entice your appetite.

~Till then.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Making Up Minds

I have heard a lot of thoughts about money. I have seen a lot of theories about it. And I already felt how it was not to have money and how it is how to have some. But for some reason I cannot understand how people cannot grow from being a slave for money. How they are not coping up with inflation and how they cannot handle big changes about money.

Well there are always differences when it comes to money matters as there are always differences when it comes to love problems. As I tweeted earlier, “When it comes to love it’s okay to be dumb. But when it comes to finances, oh boy, you have to make up your mind.”

~Till then

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Use Pedometer to Loose Weight

I recently enrolled in a wellness program offered by the company I am working for. We were asked to write down our specific goals and I think the program will help us achieve them. I got excited about the activity and browsed some products which will help me achive my goals faster. I bumped into this idea of having a pedometer. The report here says that it can actually increase physical activity by having a standard. Let’s say for example, you commited to achieve 10,000 steps everyday.

I have never proven anything about this so I want to experiment. I will purchase a pedometer soon and take note of my physical activities. I will also keep a journal about this and I will tell you the results at the end of the year.

~Till then

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Toll Fees Up and Taxi Fare Hike

The first thing that I thought was “Ouch! Another series of service-fee hikes.”

Click here for news on Link here for Toll Fee hike and click here for taxi fare hike.

What does this imply to ordinary citizen like you and me?

Another tight budget for 2011!

So what shall we do?

Budget budget and budget.

Transportation doesn’t only affect commuters. It affects the prices of the products transported. A good example is the price of the fresh produce from Benguet and Batangas. Since the toll fee increases dramatically – meaning incerase in the total cost for dealers – the prices of these products will also increse. This increase will be passed on to the consumers. Hence the buying power of our peso will drastically decrease.

In line with this, here are some ways we are currently doing in order to lower the impact of the service-fee hikes.

Live near your workplace.

If you are currently renting and it requires you to commute to your workplace then better find a place near your workplace. Hence you save transportation cost. But be sure to compute the total cost of renting versus your current rent and the additional expense on transportation increase.

Walk walk and walk

Walking does not only save you some money it is also a great way to start your day. As they say, walking 30 minutes a day can lessen incidence of cancer, heart disease, stroke, diabetes and other killer diseases. They live longer and get mental health and spiritual benefits. Clicke here for the benefits of walking.

Schedule your trips

Scheduling your trip will save you a lot of money. Make sure to do errands in batches. For example, pay all your bills at the same day so you’ll save gas on the trip. You can also include a trip to the grocery after paying your bill. Just do things in a single trip.

Prepare a budget

Budgeting makes our lives easier. Make a budget every month and then track your expenses. This may sound tedious but if you will follow I’m sure you’ll monitor where your money goes.

Stick to the budget

The very essence of making a budget is to stick with it.

~Till then.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Credit Card or No Credit Card?

Last week I was called by a banker and told me that I have a priviledge card from their office. She just wants to confirm my mailing address which happens to be my office address. I asked her what a priviledge card is. She told me it’s a pre-approved credit card. I was offered credit cards half a dozen times but I continue to decline. I am not against credit cards but I don’t see the need of owning one today. Maybe few years from now.

~Till then.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Why become an Investor?

I’ve been talking a lot about saving money and I noticed that readers might stop at that. So I decided to write about the great things about investing money.

Saving money is just the beginning while investing it is the process. The fruits of your money’s labor will be reap when you need it and only when you need it.

Reminders before investing:

Investing requires math.

Mind you, the mathematics involved in investing are very simple addition, subtraction, multiplication and division only. No need for advance mathematics. No need for calculus and trigonometry. MDAS will be fine.

Invest with a specific goal in mind.

Before investing be certain of the reason why you are going to invest. Will this be for the downpayment of your dream house? Will this be for the college education of your children? Will this be for a grand wedding you want to have? Any reason is valid as long as you have a particular reason.

We usually think of banks when it comes to saving money. Why? Because our parents taught us to do so. During the time of our parents banks give higher interest rates. Way higher than what they offer now. That’s why during their times banks are good investment facilities. But things change. Right now, banks themselves say that they are not investment facilities. So where will we put our money? Answer: Invest it!

If you put your 100,000php in a bank that gives 1% per annum how many years will it take to double? If you don’t have a calculator then do it in Excel. You’ll be amazed to find out that your money will become 200,000php after 72 years. Question: Will you still be alive after 72 years? I hope so. If you want your money to grow faster put it in an investment facility which earns higher than inflation rate. Averagely about 12% per annum. Now, using your calculator or your Excel find out how long will it take your 100,000php to become 200,000php. Amazingly, it would only take 6 years.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

How to Pick Investment Facilities

Before finally deciding to invest your hard-earned money, make time to reflect about your risk tolerance. Are you more of a risk-taker? Will you not get nervous if the prices go 50% lower than your purchase price?

My discussion will all be about mutual funds. They are the easiest investment facilities I know where in a normal person like you and me can go into.

Mutual funds are like banks. They both collect money from people and invest it. Banks invest their money through credit. That’s why a lot of banks are promoting credit cards. Unlike banks, mutual fund companies invest a chunk of the money in stock market. They have an array of researchers to do the math and they have a captain, whom they call the fund manager, who decides where to put the fund. You pay these researchers and the fund manager with least possible cost approximately 2-3% of your investment capital. Not bad if you as an investor can gain 12% from them.

I’ll be introducing 3 kinds of mutual funds in this article.

Bond Fund

Bond funds are what they call the “safest” among the three. Approximately 90% of the fund are invested in government bonds and only 10% are in stocks. Since this is the “safest” among the three it also has the smallest earning capability. Around 3 to 6% per annum. Use this fund if you don’t like volatility and if you want to maintain the value of your money.

Balance Fund

Balance funds invest 50% in government bonds and 50% in stocks. If you want more risk at the same time a good security then this is the way to go. It gives an average return of 6 to 10% per annum. Most of the times people who invest in balance funds are those who don’t know what their risk tolerance is. So they go midway.

Equity Fund/Stock Fund

If you are a risk-taker and can take volatility then equity fund is a great vehicle to achieve your long-term financial goals. In a long-term basis this fund can reach 12% (or more) interest per annum. Equity funds invest 90% of the money on stock market and 10% on government facilities.

If you want to know more about mutual funds just drop me a note so I can give you the contact number of an organization that discusses mutual funds.

Friday, January 7, 2011

I am 26 years old. Is it too early for retirement planning?

All of my mentors would say NO.

At 26 years old it should be clear what you want in your life - when do you want to get married, how many children you want to have and of course your retirement plans.

Let’s have a little workshop. Get a piece of paper and a pen. Draw a horizontal line on the paper. Place the year of your birth on the left end. Place the approximate year of your death on the other end. (Of course this is just a workshop. Just imagine you'll live until that year.) Then somewhere in between place the year today. And then place a dot at the year you want to retire. Subtract the year today from the year you want to retire. That my friend is the number of years you are allowing yourself to prepare for retirement.

How much you want for retirement depends upon your lifestyle. Nobody will tell you the exact amount. You decide on your own. Remember, the longer time you have to prepare for retirement the lesser the amount you have to save.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

My bucket list for 2011

New year, new life, new goals and new bucket list.

They say that the best thing to do to be held accountable is to declare your intentions. That’s what I’m going to do today. I’m going to share some of the things I want to accomplish on 2011. I hope I can inspire you to declare your goals also.

1. Daily Bible reading

2. Attend a Citisec Online seminar

3. Conquer Mt. Pulag

4. Surf in San Juan

5. No meat diet (poultry meat will be fine but minimal)

6. Eat more fruits and vegetables

7. Jog every other day

8. Sashimi (my new favorite) every other month

9. Invest 50% of my income

10. Very minimal soda intake

11. To drink at least 8 glasses of water a day

12. Weigh myself every other month to monitor weight loss

13. To read one book every month

14. Participate in any charitable works

15. Organize a big event

16. Donate blood every 3 months

17. Learn something new every month

18. To publish 200 blogs

19. Increase my cash flow.

20. To help more families in terms of building their financial foundation.

~Till then

Monday, January 3, 2011

Diet Another Day!

It’s been a year now since I have this extra weight in my body. And I am so commited to loose some of it this year. I am 5 foot 4 inches tall and my current weight is at 125lbs. My body mass index reads normal and they say my weight is okay considering my height.

I used to weigh 115 lbs and I want it back. For a start I will be entering a different diet this time. And it will be strictly implemented. I’ll summon all the discipline in my mind and I am hoping to see a 115 lbs lady three months from now.

~Till Then

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Additional Company Benefits

There's always good news every first day of the year.

The company that I am working for will give additional benefits for employees. Beginning January 1, 2011 the company will adjust the rice subsidy. An additional 3000php per year will be given to all employees and will be given in a quarterly basis.

Another company benefit is the maternity pay. (Applied to all female employees.) The company will give the salary of women employees under maternity leave in addition to the maternity pay given by Social Security System (SSS).

Cheers to the people who pushed these additional benefits.