Personal Finance

Since Stable Investor focuses a lot on improving Personal Finances, it seems right to have a page dedicated to popular personal finance articles here. Below is a list of useful Personal Finance articles available here:

Popular Personal Finance Articles

Popular Financial Planning Articles

 For more, you can head to the Full Archives of all the posts.


  1. Dear Sir/Madam,

    I am working in Insurance sector since last 6 yrs. Due to extreme work pressure I tend to get disturb. I am married & proud father of baby son. I want to generate fix amount of Rs 10,000/- to 12,000/- every month. I want this return to be tax free in my hand. On other hand I have invested in PPF, insurance (term plan), mutual fund, FD's & MIP.

    Please inform how can achieve this????

  2. Hi,

    Congrats for such a big hit.
    I am a continuous follower of the site and read all the articles here. They were very useful.

    I'd invested this year in IDFC Dynamic Bond Fund (direct plan) a huge sum throughout this year slowly. Now because of currency crunch and bond market instability I am bit confused to sell all of these and come out and put in FD like secure investment or what to do. I am sitting on around 2% loss as of today.

    Please advise.


  3. Hi Nilesh

    The information provided by you is a little less. Nevertheless, we would make certain assumptions to answer your query. Though it would have been easier if we knew approximate amounts you have already invested in PPF, FDs and MIPs (No. We won’t count insurance in this).

    A simple calculation shows that if you want to earn Rs 10,000 to Rs 12,000 every month, you need to have a fixed deposit (Or similar product) offering around 8% interest for an amount close to Rs 15,00,000 – Rs 20,00,000. In case, your investments in FDs and MIPs are substantial, you can very well earn your required amount every month. For example, if you hold 5 lacs in FD, you then need to arrange another 10-15 Lac more to be able to achieve your target monthly income.

    We have deliberately not chosen equities or MFs as these have low dividend payouts (yield of around 3%) and have a moving capital appreciation (or depreciation) part. This would make your monthly payout very very volatile. But if you are still interested in equities and mutual funds, then some exposure can be taken in good, stable, blue chip companies

    The question which arises here is that how do you build a corpus of Rs 20 Lacs to generate such monthly income? The hard truth is that this would be a long drawn process of accumulating money if you are starting from zero (which may not be true in your case). But atleast you have decided to make a start and have given due respect to the power of passive income. A job in insurance sector can result in positive surprises in form of incentives and bonuses. You can use these bonuses to give a booster shot to your portfolio every now and then.

    Please Note – This is just a preliminary assessment from our side. Personal Finance related issues can only be resolved (or planned for) when we have complete financial data about the person. Till then, any advice given by us, is based on (rational) assumptions.

  4. Hi,

    I seek your advice on how to invest on a monthly basis. I am 26 years old and I have 20k to spare every month. I was dwelling on the following but I am not sure of the percentages to put on each. Let me know if any further details are required.

    1. PPF
    2. NPS (National Pension Scheme)
    3. FD/RD
    4. ESPP
    5. Insurance
    6. Anything else that I am missing?

  5. Thanks a lot Ravi. We are glad that you like our efforts towards long term wealth building.

    As far as liquidating your bond fund positions is concerned, it would depend on how long is your time horizon. 2% cut is not much when compared with cuts in equity as an asset class.

    If you are saving this amount for some near future expense (like house purchase, property etc), it might make sense to put a major chunk of it in FDs depending on the time frame you have in mind. But if you are planning to use these funds as a retirement kitty, then majority of this fund should be gradually transferred to equity mutual funds (index funds or funds that have been in existence for last 10+ years). Equity as an asset class has been known to perform better than any other asset class when considering a time horizon of 5 to 10 years. And with major indices trading a decent TTM multiples of below 16, it is a good time to look at equity as an asset class.

    Individual stock picks make sense only when you are ready to do the hard work of analyzing stocks and keeping yourself abreast with latest developments. Also a passion for equities (and not emotion) goes a long way in sustaining interest in this asset class which can go down as much as 50% by the time one even realizes what is happening.

    Hope that helps

  6. Thanks .. it helped!

    1 advice .. How about putting some of the most common posts related to personal finance at the top of this page so that folks can go over the same before commenting ..

  7. Hi,

    A write-up on Tax free bonds would help a lot. The points to be highlighted.

    1. What it is as an investment instrument? For ex. I am very confused about the interest payment terms. Is it compulsorily annual? or can I defer it till maturity to take advantage of compounding?
    2. As tax free bonds are long term instruments, what's your opinion on creating a passive income stream out of it. i.e. if I invest my current annual expenses (i.e. every year till I retire and adjusting every year by inflation and interest rates) in a Tax free bond and for a term which matches by retirement term, will it not cover a significant part of retirement planning?
    3. Also adding inflation indexed bonds should provide a better retirement incomer stream.

  8. I have just recieved 15 lacs from somewhere. How to best use this fund. I want to use this fund as intelligently as possible, with lowest risk and maximum returns
    Please advise

  9. Hi,
    Shivam here. I am 23 and I have got all the insurance work with me (Term , medical and PA ). I have also built a portfolio of stocks. The portfolio has some core holdings and some axillary holdings.
    I have a question in general. As per your philosophy you like companies that regularly give generous dividends, not the companies that are growing at a faster rate. The reason behind this is that dividend gives a regular source of income which in turn can be reinvested.
    But what if I dont want a regular dividend income at this stage of life (23). I can invest in growth companies and gradually move towards dividend paying companies. This not only will allows to get a more Return on my Investment but also will give me the flexibility to adjust the portfolio as per my age.

    PS: I invest around 20K / month is stocks and mutual funds

  10. Hi Shivam
    Glad that you are properly insured, as young people of your age take a dive into various asset classes without getting the first step right. πŸ™‚

    As far as your question is concerned, the choice of sticking to dividend payers for core portfolio is a personal one and dependent on my personal risk appetite and personality. But, if you do check out the satellite part of portfolio, you would find that I also invest in growth companies. It is just that the weightage of such investments is less than core portfolio. But if you don’t want to invest in slow growing dividend paying companies, then you can very well invest in companies which you feel have high growth prospects. It is just about being comfortable and being able to sleep peacefully at night. πŸ™‚

  11. Hi dev
    I am regular reader of your site and this is the first time I am making a comment. Since I dont understand stocks much, I eagerly read other articles on your website.
    You have mentioned about making an emergency fund at many places on your website. As a novice how should I start making an emergency funds. Its is tough for me to save money and every month end, I am close to being broke. Please help.

  12. Hey Aarti
    Good to see your first comment. I would take up a detailed discussion on Emergency Funds in next few days. Expect a dedicated post on this topic soon, πŸ™‚

  13. I just cant save money. My salary gets finished by 20th of every month. I want to retire as soon as possible. I am 23. I earn 35000 in hand and have no savings. Only 10k in fd and some life insurance which my father forced me to buy. I have bin working for last 1.5 years and have nothing to show as savings or investments. please help dev

  14. Hello Stable Investor.
    I am a regular reader of your blog post. Here I am requesting you to kindly cover a topic or dedicated post related to performance evaluation of stock portfolio consisting of various stocks similar to Warren Buffett does in his Annual Letters or in his earlier partnership letters.

    Thanking You

  15. Hi,

    Hope you can solve this query: I had a debt of 80k on my credit cards which were used a few months back for my wedding purpose. Paying off some amounts the consolidated credit card debt now stands at 65k. Well the interest portion is eating up all the payments.

    I have a few investments in Equity MFs (2 SIPs of 1500 each) and also some in Liquid Funds (12k) – consol. total of 30k

    Would it be advisable to sell off all these holdings and clearing half of the debt OR would you advise taking up a personal loan of the said debt amount for an interest rate of 15.5% p.a.

    Awaiting your response. Thank You !

  16. Hi,

    I seek your advice on how to invest on a monthly basis. I am 26 years old and I have 20k to spare every month. I was dwelling on the following but I am not sure of the percentages to put on each. Let me know if any further details are required. i m having 60k fd…i having savings around 3lac…

    1. PP(for tax saving)
    2. FD/RD
    3.preferably i want to invest in direct equity

    awaiting your response…thnak u!!!!!

  17. Hi Monkk.

    First of all accept my apologies for this delayed reply. As far as I can understand, you have a Credit Card debt of 65K. You have investments worth 30K. Your problem is to clear off this high interest CC debt of 65K. Though I would never personally advise anyone to interrupt the process of compounding, the fact remains that the interest burden in your case β€˜may’ be quite a lot. I use the word β€˜may’ because I don’t know about your monthly incomes and expenditures.

    First of all, is it not possible for you to curtail some of your unimportant expenses for a few months to clear of this CC debt? This would depend on a lot of things like your routine expenses, your desire-linked-expenses, and other expenses which can be safely avoided for a few months. Also, if you can borrow from a family member or a friend for some time, then you can consider that option too. If nothing works out, you can consider taking this personal unsecured loan which has a lower interest burden. But this can be tricky as this clearly means that you would be taking a debt to clear off an existing debt. And financially, this means that you are getting caught in a debt trap. And this might also affect your CIBIL score. Not sure which MF SIPs you are having, but in case they are not of really good variety, then you can consider selling a part of your MF portfolio to pay off the debt as equity markets have been rising for a while, and you may get some options later on to re-enter the markets at lower level.

  18. Hi Mango Person

    Just correct me if you feel my understanding is not right.
    You want me to do analysis of a few chosen Indian companies like the way Mr. Buffett does?

  19. Hi dev

    Is this a good idea to use credit for holidaying? i want to take my wife for a holiday in dubai for 5-6 days. It is not urgent and its for tourism only. But I want to do it before 2015 ends. It is my 5th anniversary that year. But I would prefer summers of 2014. Should I go in 2014 by paying with credit card or should i wait more. How should I save money for this trip? should i invest in stock markets? I would also require money for shopping for my begum πŸ™‚


  20. Now that's an interesting request. And I better get it right or your wife will kill me.
    I will do a detailed post on this Amir. Hopefully, we can find out a solution for you. πŸ™‚

  21. Thaanku so much dev!!! And I am sorry for being thankful so late.
    Really helpful post.


  22. Hi,

    I am 33 year old male. Have a house loan running, no other debt. Most of the finances are under control but due to multiple unplanned expenses my long term savings (retirement planning) and emergency fund was exhausted.

    My target emergency fund is 3 lakhs (to cover 6 months of expenses) for which I have started an RD and it should be in order in the next 10 months.

    I am planning to start SIP in Mutual funds. Below are the three MFs that I have shortlisted, needed your feedback on the same:

    Franklin India Prima Plus Growth Rs. 6000 per month
    HDFC Equity Growth Rs. 4000 per month
    HDFC Mid-Cap Opportunities Fund Growth Rs. 5000 per month
    Reliance Equity Opportunities Growth Rs. 3000 per month

    The basis of selection has been the long term track record of these fund. Plan to start a 24 month SIP.

    Please advise.

  23. Hi,

    I am a homemaker. I have a 6 year old daughter. I want to start investing in gold through SIP, basically I want to automate the process. After reading several articles, I gathered that the best way to invest in gold is through ETFs or MFs. Now, there's an online investment platform that offers SIP facility in both. All gold MFs are FoFs (fund of fund) and so, expenses charged will be more than that in ETFs. With SIP in ETFs, the entire amount cannot be invested as only whole units can be purchased. for example, if monthly SIP is 6000, then only 2 units can be bought and the balance will stay in the trading account idle. once the idle amount accumulates to a decent amount, i can place a buy order for that amount. now, i am wondering if it would be better to go for a gold MF as the lost interest on the idle amount may end up being more than the additional expenses on the MF. Please advise.


  24. Hi,
    Normally everybody talk about current position of a stock.I want to know about stock which we already hold and hoping it will overcome.
    For eg.Suzlon , Morepen lab,Tata Teleservices,IRB Infra etc
    How should I analyzed them to figure it out whether they are worth holding or sell and book loss .
    Please help me i want to learn this things since i don't belong to commerce field so i need a way to start.

  25. Hi Ajay

    It is indeed tough to wait for stocks to come to levels at which they have been purchased. But since you have not mentioned the price you entered these stocks, its really tough to take a call about them.

    In past, I have tracked Suzlon for a while but now I don't. I havent been following the other ones mentioned by you. But to be honest, analysing stocks is not a very simple thing. But if you have the interest, then you can start by getting the basic in place by getting used to terminologies used in stock markets. You can also read certain good books by famous investors. Let me know if you want the book list.
    Only then make an attempt to evaluate individual stocks. In the meantime, you can try investing using the mutual fund route.


  26. Hi.I am looking for a good CA in Mumbai between 35-40 yurs having his own practice.What si the best way to search fro one .appreciate yr reply.

  27. hi dev,
    I am an NRI about to retire and settle in India. My substantial savings is NRE FD of nearly one crore, real estate and a house to reside in with no loans. kindly advise regarding how to allocate my NRE FDs to get the best regular returns during my twilight years. Being a medical professional I am obviously veery poorwith financial dealings.

  28. I am late, but I hope, my reply shall be useful to similar others who visit this blog for help. You have a clear goal of old age income security post retirement. This is not a simple goal. The kind of technical skills, planning, advisory and operational instructions which are needed for this task can never be done though this website. My strong recommendation to everyone in strong situations like this is to consult a financial planner and get sound advise.
    I am a teacher, feel free to write to me if you need any more guidance. Happy retirement.

  29. Dear sir,
    Thanks for spreading knowledge. I am 46, have lic jeevan anand 65k/anum, PPF,and UTI retirement MF 2000/month SIP, after reading your blog understood term plan is important, is jeevan anand enough or go for term plan. Want to make SIP 15k monthly,suppose if I invest SIP for 5 years and then stopped but not withdrawing for another 5 years will that money grow?
    Thanks Ravindra

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