First things first, I am no way ready to retire, nor do I want to, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t think about retirement and am not preparing for it.
The details are still quite fuzzy when it comes to my ideal retirement, but I do know that when I am retired, I will no longer have to wake up to an alarm clock (except if I have to catch an early morning flight) and will not have to endure reckless drivers and mind-numbing traffic just to get to work.
Retirement planning may seem daunting but you’d be surprised that some of the things you are doing now, or should be doing, are actually paving the way for a picture perfect retirement. Here are the three things that I’m currently doing so that future me can be a happy retiree:
Without a doubt, my post on the shady practices of Manila Bankers Life Insurance is the most popular post on my blog.
I’m still amazed that the comments keep coming in and how Manila Bankers continues to prey on innocent people who hand over their credit cards in good faith merely for verification purposes, but would later find themselves saddled with an exorbitant insurance premium.
Questions of available remedies for the duped and unwilling life insurance holders appear with scary regularity and the most popular suggestion was to submit cancellation letter with Manila Bankers within the 15/30 day cooling off period. It was also suggested that the Insurance Commission be given a copy of the cancellation letter and/or to submit a separate letter complaint to the Insurance Commission.
As it turns out, the Insurance Commission does listen and act on complaints! I don’t know why I’m surprised to hear this though, maybe I’ve become so used to hearing about government apathy and incompetence that I’ve forgotten that government is also filled with silent workers that toil without glory or accolade in ensuring that the system runs smoothly while protecting the interests of its citizens. It just so happens that bad news is broadcasted on loudspeaker and is so much sexier to report on, thus, the resulting negative image.
I received this year’s COL Financial Chairman’s Message and it began with this panama quotation:
“If investing is entertaining, if you’re having fun, you’re
probably not making any money. Good investing is boring.”
I must be doing something right then because my stock portfolio is the most boring thing on the planet right now. And that’s because I haven’t touched my portfolio in more than a year. Sadly, my stock investing has been downgraded in my financial priorities. Debt payment has taken the first spot and insurance premiums and the office cooperative have become my primary investments. But don’t you worry my dear stock portfolio, you’ll have my undivided attention soon enough.
Alright, enough chatter, here’s the chairman!
Who else is happy that the Personal Equity Retirement Account (PERA) law will finally be implemented?!
In a nutshell, the PERA is a voluntary retirement system where contributions are made by both employees and employers, kind of like the 401k in the United States. You get a tax credit of 5% of your PERA contributions and it is tax-exempt if you make withdrawals at the age of 55 and up. Here’s a nice primer for the PERA: http://business.inquirer.net/198300/all-about-pera
I received a call from an unknown number on my cellphone last Friday and this was how our conversation played out:
Manila Bankers Life Insurance (MBLI): Good afternoon ma’am Clemens, this is _____ from Manila Bankers Life Insurance and I’m calling you today to inform you that in celebration of MBLI’s anniversary, you won an educational scholarship and health and wellness GCs.
Me: How did you get my number?
MBLI: You were recommended by one of our partner banks: BPI, BDO, Metrobank, RCBC, Security Bank, EastWest Bank, PNB, LandBank etc.
Me: What’s this about?
MBLI: As I said, you won an educational scholarship and health and wellness GCs which you must claim today or tomorrow from our office in Makati.
Me: All I need to do is claim it? There will be no product presentations, no seminars etc?
MBLI: Yes mam, you just need to pick them up at our office today or tomorrow and bring 2 valid IDs and a bank ID with you.
Me: Sorry but I can’t make it.
MBLI: Are you sure ma’am? Sayang naman ang scholarship and health and wellness GCs.
Me: I’m sure. Thanks for calling!
I made a quick search of Manila Bankers Life Insurance and was surprised to see the numerous incendiary comments and allegations of fraud: