Thursday, February 28, 2013

Don't Sell Your Gold Trinidad & Tobago

Why are there more gold buyers than ever before in Trinidad & Tobago?

Within the last few years there has been an increased prevalence of advertisement attempting to induce consumers to part ways with their gold jewellery. Though the practice of cash for gold is not a new one and is a legitimate business; this article seeks to inform consumers before they make such a decision.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Seven Reasons You Should Not Opt For An HDC House

Believe it or not the prospect of receiving a subsidized home from the government is not blessing but rather a curse. Here’s why:

Sunday, February 17, 2013

An Effective 3 Point Crime Plan For Trinidad and Tobago

1. Immediately remove the gun legislation and bureaucracy in sourcing firearms for law abiding citizens.

The law in its current form ensures only non-law abiding citizens and on duty police will have firearms. This therefore emboldens criminals because they know that law-abiding citizens are unarmed and powerless to defend themselves. Essentially making the majority of Trinbagonians potential victims.

The Trinidad and Tobago Police Service - An inefficient government agency should not have monopoly over your individual personal safety and security. Government has monopoly over water, the issue of drivers's permits, passports, ID cards, customs etc etc. How have these services worked out?

If citizens want to figure out what works look at what the persons with the most power, money and autonomy do to protect and safeguard themselves. They enlist the services of armed guards to protect them or they pay the requisite bribe to get a firearm license. 

2. Legalise the use of illegal drugs.

This will essentially stop the waste of police resources on the policing of illegal drugs. Drugs like marijuana therefore should be immediately legalised. Currently the Trinidad and Tobago Prison Service can't even keep drugs out of prisons, how will the TTPS keep drugs out of an entire island with open boarders. Our current policy was literally doomed to fail from the start. This approach would also allow the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service to assign more officers to patrol the streets and increase detection and conviction rates of more serious crimes.

This approach would also reduce drug prices for which huge premiums are paid on the black market, thereby making the industry less attractive to drug pushers. 

This change in policy does not facilitate lawlessness but rather allows individuals to incur the consequences of their actions i.e. drug use leads to destitution. After all a million laws could be written but at the end of the day morality cannot be legislated.

3. Improve Accountability By Publicly Publishing Prosecution Statistic of Prosecutors, Judges and Police officers.

Afford the public greater transparency over the judicial process. What motivation do police officials have to track down criminals when the majority of suspects go free? What motivation do officers have when they receive compensation whether they perform or not? Trinidad and Tobago does not just have a crime problem since police officers can't be everywhere a crime occurs it really has a crime prosecution and conviction problem.

Why the Majority of Trinbagonians Should not Buy A Brand New Car

 Unless you're very wealthy with money to burn you should not be purchasing a new car especially when taking out a loan. The costs are just way too high for the average Trinbagonian to absorb. The new car smell and the big "sawatie" feeling just isn’t worth it.

Here's why:

The High Loan Interest Expense. Riding a wave of emotion and persuasive arguments buyers often neglect to see what they're signing up for in terms of the tremendous financial expense they will now by saddled with. Here's an example:

New Car Cost : $200,000
Down payment: $20,000
Loan Amount: $180,000
Annual Interest Rate: 12% (Could be much more)
Length of the loan: 5 Years
Number of Monthly Payments: 60
Loan Interest paid after 5 Years: $60,240
Total Payments to Bank: $240,240
Total Acquisition Cost: $260,240

 In other words a car that cost $200,000 winds up costing you: $260,240 after 5 years when you finance it.  

Here's where you lose even more:

Higher Insurance Cost Insurance cost is much higher on new cars and especially so when cars are financed. Once the car purchase is financed the bank makes it mandatory for the purchaser to take out a full comprehensive insurance policy to safeguard the financier's collateral. This means that your yearly insurance cost is much higher than if a cheaper second hand car was bought. Had you bought a cheaper second hand car not only would your insurance cost be lower but you could opt for third part, fire and theft insurance which is substantially cheaper than full comprehensive coverage.  

Higher Maintenance by Local Car Dealers New cars purchased in Trinidad and Tobago are required to have their vehicles serviced by the new car dealer in the early life of the car. These services are required to maintain the warranty on the car purchased. Even after the mandatory services to maintain the car's warranty have passed many owners often feel inclined to continue to service their cars at the local car dealers at very exorbitant costs since they worry that having the car serviced elsewhere could have negative consequences. Its even worse if the car gets into an accident and needs to be repaired.  

Significant Loss in Value Once New Cars Are Driven Out the Showroom

Reports indicate that as cars drive out the showroom they immediately decline 25 - 30% in value since the car can no longer be considered a "new car" or unused. This is a terrible personal business decision and should be avoided by the average car buyer who cannot afford such a hit against their personal finances. Moreover new cars lose 70% of their value in the first four years. When you buy used, the original owner has already taken that major depreciation hit. You, on the other hand, can get a great four-year-old car for a good price significantly lower than the cost of a brand new car. Accidental nicks and scratches in the early life of the car also have the effect of eroding the car's value much faster.


Solution: Save Up and Buy A Used Car Of course buying your car without taking out a loan will be a challenge, but its certainly not impossible. With a strong work ethic and diligence in saving and minimizing spending can help get you there. Spend a lot of time looking and researching potential cars. Look through the newspaper classifieds, go online and search for used cars, and you’ll find plenty of good cars for $60,000 or less—Toyota Corollas, Honda Accords, Civics, Mitsubishi Lancers, Nissan Sunny's.  

Patience is a virtue. Your Not Doomed to drive a relatively older car forever. Say that you are thinking about financing a new car with payments of $2500 a month. Your current car is worth around $40,000. If you take that $2500 and pay yourself, instead of the bank, you’ll have $25,000 in just 10 short months. Sell your old car and you'll have a total of $65,000 to use towards the purchase of a better car, while continuing to save $2500 a month in another 10 months you'll have another $25,000 to put towards an upgraded car purchase. Repeat this process again, and you could have a $100,000 car just 30 months after you started saving. This makes much better financial sense than buying a new car and incurring significant loss in value.  

But I Need A Reliable Car... Older cars have high maintenance cost and headache When you buy a new car you are paying a high premium to have a warranty / or a feeling of reliability, with all that money you pay the bank and the car dealerships you could comprehensively maintain a gently used car, more than you would ever need.

Instead use that money that would be wasted buying a new car and budget it toward car maintenance and toward your next cash purchase of a car. With a thorough car search and proper counsel before making a used car purchase you'll have an excellent chance of finding an affordable roadworthy vehicle. Though this may not be what you want to hear; deferring instant gratification has tremendous benefits. Don't be impulsive with your financial decisions.

Questions, comments? Contact us.