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Finance: If I could be 30 again

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Finance: If I could be 30 again | The Thaiger

PHUKET: In my last column, I wrote about what advice I would give my 20-year-old self, if I could turn back the clock and do it all again. Today, I will focus on a much more recent time frame in my life and discuss what kind of advice I would give to someone who has just turned 30. What are some of things you might want to consider as you enter this phase of your life?

First of all, don’t grow up – it’s a trap! Keep this advice for as long as you live. No matter how ambitious you are, if you can maintain that sense of optimism we all have – or most of us have – in our twenties, you will achieve much more in life. The worst thing that could happen to someone in their thirties is to fall into a rut that lasts until retirement.

Don’t be afraid to make a career change – even if you have spent a fortune on your education. The reason is that at this point, your education is already a sunken cost. And many people discover that the career they studied hard for didn’t really materialize.

If you really love what you are doing, then that’s fine, but let’s face it, people who are truly satisfied with their jobs are in a minority. And yet, for most of us, nothing is more terrifying than change. Just remember, if you don’t take a chance now, imagine how terrifying it would be in your forties or fifties.

A second very important thing I would advise is to invest in some form of real estate. What many find surprising is that investing in something other than your primary residence will leave you better off in the long run. Most people stretch too far when investing in their primary residence, and this can become a ball and chain later in life.

Land is what appreciates most in real estate, so I am a big fan of diversifying in land when young and buying in cheap plots with the potential for a high return. You can always develop the properties later. Take advantage of the low entry price now, without having to fork out to develop the land.

For most thirty-something people, developing land means taking on a certain amount of debt that is not conducive to a happy-go-lucky mindset. Of course, I am assuming that you are in a location like Southeast Asia where you can rent accommodation cheaply. If you are in a high-rent location like Europe, then my advice would be to move to Phuket!

Saddled with a big debt, it is much more frightening to make the move from employee to business owner – the most profitable financial decision you can make, in my opinion. I am a firm believer that everyone should end up working for themselves, rather than for somebody else – especially if they want to feel that they have truly succeeded in life. Of course, you can remain an employee your whole life and still retire well off, but you will have spent your entire career enriching somebody else.

There’s no doubt that my advice is based heavily on values that are important to me, but freedom and independence to make one’s own choices are two things I value highly, and I think everyone should strive for these values too. My biggest fear now would be to have to answer to a “boss” again – other than my wife, of course!

The biggest financial blunder I think everyone in their thirties should avoid is to get stuck in a rut that could last a lifetime. Only you know in your own heart if you are doing what you truly love and are most passionate about. If not, the best thing you can do financially is to try something different. Finding your true passion and calling is the best thing you can ever do for yourself financially.

David Mayes MBA resides in Phuket and provides wealth management services to expatriates around the globe, focusing on UK pension transfers. He can be reached at david.m@faramond.com or 085-335-8573. Faramond UK is regulated by the FCA and provides advice on pensions and taxation.

— David Mayes

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Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

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Governments & old media versus social media – who will win? | VIDEO

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Governments & old media versus social media – who will win? | VIDEO | The Thaiger

We look at the recent changes made by the Australian and Indian governments to except control over the world’s biggest social media platforms. India has issued strict new rules for Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms just weeks after the Indian government attempted to pressure Twitter to take down social media accounts it deemed, well, anti social. There is now an open battle between the rise of social media platforms and the governments and ‘old’ media that have been able to maintain a certain level of control over the ‘message’ for the last century. Who will win?

The rules require any social media company to create three roles within India… a “compliance officer” who ensures they follow local laws; a “grievance officer” who addresses complaints from Indian social media users; and a “contact person” who can actually be contacted by lawyers and other aggrieved Indian parties… 24/7.

The democratisation of the news model, with social media as its catalyst, will continue to baffle traditional media and governments who used to enjoy a level of control over what stories get told. The battles of Google and Facebook, with the governments of India and Australia will be followed in plenty of other countries as well.

At the root of all discussions will be the difference between what governments THINK social media is all about and the reality about how quickly the media landscape has changed. You’ll get to read about it first, on a social media platform… probably on the screen you’re watching this news story right now.

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The social media giants in battle with ‘old’ media and world governments | VIDEO

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The social media giants in battle with ‘old’ media and world governments | VIDEO | The Thaiger

“The rules signal greater willingness by countries around the world to rein in big tech firms such as Google, Facebook and Twitter that the governments fear have become too powerful with little accountability.”

India has issued strict new rules for Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms just weeks after the Indian government attempted to pressure Twitter to take down social media accounts it deemed, well, anti social.

The rules require any social media company to create three roles within India… a “compliance officer” who ensures they follow local laws; a “grievance officer” who addresses complaints from Indian social media users; and a “contact person” who can actually be contacted by lawyers and other aggrieved Indian parties… 24/7.

The companies are also being made to publish a compliance report each month with details about how many complaints they’ve received and the action they took.

They’ll also be required to remove ‘some’ types of content including “full or partial nudity,” any “sexual act” or “impersonations including morphed images”

The democratisation of the news model, with social media as its catalyst, will continue to baffle traditional media and governments who used to enjoy a level of control over what stories get told.

The battles of Google and Facebook, with the governments of India and Australia will be followed in plenty of other countries as well.

At the root of all discussions will be the difference between what governments THINK social media is all about and the reality about how quickly the media landscape has changed. You’ll get to read about it first, on a social media platform… probably on the screen you’re watching this news story right now.

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Never miss out on future posts by following The Thaiger.

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Turbulence ahead for Thailand’s aviation industry | VIDEO

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Turbulence ahead for Thailand’s aviation industry | VIDEO | The Thaiger

When the airlines, in particular, were asking the government to put their hands in their pockets for some relief funding in August last year, it was genuinely thought that international tourists would be coming back for the high season in December and January. At the very least local tourists and expats would head back to the skies over the traditional holiday break. And surely the Chinese would be back for Chinese New Year?

As we know now, none of that happened. A resurge in cases started just south of Bangkok on December 20 last year, just before Christmas, kicking off another round of restrictions, pretty much killing off any possibility of a high season ‘bump’ for the tourist industry. Airlines slashed flights from their schedule, and hotels, which had dusted off their reception desks for the surge of tourists, shut their doors again.

Domestically, the hotel business saw 6 million room nights in the government’s latest stimulus campaign fully redeemed. But the air ticket quota of 2 million seats still has over 1.3 million seats unused. Local tourists mostly skipped flights and opted for destinations within driving distance of their homes.

As for international tourism… well that still seems months or years away, even now.

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