Thursday, March 24, 2011

Suze Orman 'The Money Class'

By Ebonee Bright

Suze Orman is a two-time Emmy Award-winning television host, New York Times mega bestselling author, magazine and online columnist, writer/producer, and one of the top motivational speakers in the world today. Orman is undeniably America’s most recognized expert on personal finance.

Laura, Elaine and I had the opportunity to see Suze live this Tuesday. Here are 4 essential tips from the Money Class:

1. Live below your means, but within your needs
2. The pleasure of saving equals the pleasure of spending
3. Focus on gains, not losses

In this book Orman dismisses the old American Dream stating, "It used to be more, bigger, best. Everybody in America used to define themselves by all these things they had around them. And all of a sudden it came tumbling down. So the old American dream has died, and that is a good thing."

Orman redefines the American Dream stating that

"It's a dream where you actually get more pleasure out of saving than you do spending. It's a dream where you live below your means but within your needs. You are not spending every penny, you are not impressing people. You are living a life where you can sleep at night and you are actually happy."

However, like all gurus, Suze makes blanket statements that may not apply to everyone, like Orman dismissing the need for investment advisors.

Laura Price, Investment Advisor at Family Investment Center adds,

"When a member of the audience asked her how to find the best financial advisor, Suze responded, 'Look in the mirror.' I agree that we can and SHOULD educate ourselves about finances. But let’s face it – some people could read a thousand books about investments and financial planning and still not feel confident they’re managing their money properly. This is why they hire professionals – people who spend each day researching, evaluating clients’ portfolios, and reading about economic trends, new fund managers, and how a natural disaster in Japan or political turmoil in the Middle East might affect investments stateside. Most people don’t have that kind of time or energy to devote. We do."

Elaine Coder, Director of Client Services at Family Investment Center states,

"When you hire someone to help manage your portfolio, you communicate with them and stay involved. By understanding what your advisor is doing for you and how you benefit from institutional pricing you will be able to choose the right advisor. People want to spend their time doing what they’re best at and enjoy the most. Most of us would rather pay someone to do what they do best. I could learn to change oil in my car and check other things under the hood but I’d rather pay someone else who knows a lot more about it to get it done right and save me time and frustration."

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