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Everyone makes some money mistakes. But learning from others is a lot less painful than making your own! I have benefitted from listening to tales from family and friends investing disasters and have confessed my own financial errors for readers, in turn, to learn from.
It is rare people are brave enough to share their financial horror stories. The shame and embarrassment of a huge financial mistake often prevent people from reporting or warning others. But learning from others mistakes is sometimes more valuable than stories of success.
In the M&M series, I have asked financial content producers to bravely confess their worst financial mistakes. Read these warnings carefully and learn as much as you can from them to avoid making money mistakes of your own.
Introducing Dev Raga.
My name is Dev Raga, and I am a medical doctor still in clinical practice. I am also a podcaster, and my main aim with my podcast episodes to discuss financial concepts/principles. My principal listeners are health care workers, who are often time poor to focus on their finances. I try and simplify concepts as much as possible.
Anyone can listen to my podcasts from the beginner to the advanced investor.
I like the FI part of FIRE, and not the RE. I don’t plan to retire early, but will reduce my work hours. This is because I like my job, and also to leave clinical practice is a big decision.
Podcast is called: Dev Raga Personal Finance
Worst Financial Error: Saving not Investing
Probably the fact that I saved 40K during my medical school days – when I graduated, and didn’t invest it as I saved it.
I calculated –> thats a $1million mistake.
More recently 4 years ago – bought a custom built pool table. Not sure why, I don’t even play pool. I have used it less than 10 times in 4 years.
Biggest waste of consumer spending ever.
I just didn’t know enough about investing. I was an excellent saver in Medical School. I did not any of the financial principles/concepts I talk about. All I knew was how to save, up to 50-70% of my income – as a med student, which wasn’t much.
But time in the market is more powerful than timing the market. Had I know that, I would have been a better position today.
Could Saving Not Investing have been avoided:
Yes. More education, more awareness. Med school is not easy, and I had a lot on my plate back then. So investing didn’t even cross my mind.
When did I realise I made the saving not investing mistake?
In 2013 when the market shot up significantly.
Thats when I realised all the units I had bought between 2009 onwards would be worth much more. Then I realised had I done this from 2001 – since med school, it would be worth more.
Since 2009 – I have saved, and invested at least 20% of my after tax income.
I have just kept investing simple, and easy, and long term focussed.
I don’t think I will ever recover the opportunity cost of $1million dollars, but at least now I have a much clearer understanding of investing, and why its much better if the market crashes rather than rises for me.
Thanks Dev Raga! Not many managed to save money during med school! Dev Raga’s previous article outlined his investing strategy.
Aussie Doc Freedom is not a financial adviser and does not offer any advice. Information on this website is purely a description of my experiences and learning. Please check with your independent financial adviser or accountant before making any changes.