Friday, 1 February 2013
PENNY WISE, POUND FOOLISH
The need to make wise, informed financial decisions.
A couple who had just returned home after spending many years overseas wanted to sell their house in Petaling Jaya, the modern satellite city near to the capital city of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
They reckoned they would sell the house by themselves as they did not want to pay any commission on the sale to a real estate agent. The house was snapped up at RM 500,000. They thought it was an extremely good deal for they had bought it many years ago for only RM180,000.
Later they realised that they were penny wise, pound foolish. If they had consulted a real estate agent, the latter would have advised them that the market price of a similar unit in that area is around RM 800,000. Even after paying the sales commission, they would have earned much, much more profit if they had enlisted the help of the property agent.
The above example highlights the need to make wise financial decisions based on knowledge and counsel from others who are experts in the field. This couple have failed to realise the extent to which property prices have appreciated over the years while they were away overseas. And so were penny wise, pound foolish.
If we desire to obey God and know His ways, we need to study His Word. God laments that His people are destroyed for lack of knowledge because they have rejected it (Hosea 4:6).
Similarly, if we want to be financially savvy, we need to seek knowledge. In this regard, there are resources aplenty to help us — books, magazines, seminars, websites and financial advisers.
We have to be diligent in doing research before investing in something. If an investment scheme is too good to be true, it probably is. Have we delved into all the pertinent facts and figures? Make informed decisions, not rely on rumours or hunches. “Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed” (Proverbs 15:22).
Sometimes God guides us through a rhema word — how and when we should invest. Long ago, God told Jeremiah to buy a field. Later when his cousin offered to sell his field to him, Jeremiah knew God had been speaking specifically to him (Jeremiah 32:6-8).
This post has been adapted from an article, FAITH AND FINANCIAL FREEDOM, which appeared in the Feb 2013 issue of “Asian Beacon” magazine: