Freedom to make financial decisions

Dollars and Sense

Freedom to make financial decisionsBy JULIUS BOTELHO, Alpha Omega Wealth

We have many powerful freedoms in the United States of America, not the least of which is the freedom to make our own financial decisions. It is that freedom that I’d like us to look at today because it is a great example of a “freedom” that comes with a large price tag attached.

The price tag that I am referring to is the freedom to fail. It is fun and interesting to hear stories of people who pull themselves up by their bootstraps financially. It is also encouraging to notice that those stories come from all sorts of people regardless of race, social status, sex or any other distinguishing factor. The fact is, in this country we can all become successful financially if we decide to.

We can also choose to fail financially, and in my work, I see one common thread running through the stories of failure that I hear from my clients. That thread can most simply be described as the failure to think for themselves. I am fascinated by the clear distinction I see in the people who come through my office between those who have carefully thought through their financial choices and those who turn out to have just taken the advice of some financial salesperson or a shiny brochure they found somewhere. Let me give you an example.

Many people who haven’t really thought it through say that they want to be able to “pay cash so they can avoid paying interest.” This of course sounds wise, but it fails to factor in the loss of interest that the money they used to “pay cash” could have been earning elsewhere. It often also overlooks the vulnerability that might be created when cash reserves are depleted to make a major purchase only to be needed when some unexpected crisis occurs.

If credit is then used to solve the crisis, the interest payments begin regardless of the good intentions behind paying cash. Of course, a good solution would be to just have a bigger cash reserve, but there is an even better one. What if there was a way to build a cash reserve that could be used without depleting it? What if it was possible to earn interest on money while also spending it?

Sound to good to be true or just flat far-fetched? Then let me suggest that you have just been given a glimpse behind the curtain to one of the secrets that all commercial banks and most large corporations know. There are financial vehicles available to normal everyday people that allow just what I’ve described.

Want to see for yourself? Well I’ve got a thinking challenge for you… buy and read Nelson Nash’s book “Becoming Your Own Banker” (available online from the Nelson Nash Institute). Then come by my office and tell me what you thought of it. If it wasn’t the most insightful and helpful book you’ve ever read relating to personal finance, I’ll write a $50 check to your favorite charity. (Let me know you’re coming, and I’ll make sure to have some of Nancy’s homemade cookies for you so you won’t have to worry about leaving empty handed because in all the years I’ve been making this offer, I’ve yet to write my first check)

Julius Botelho is a financial educator with Alpha Omega Wealth. His passion is sharing the truth about money and how it really works, helping people identify opportunities they might never have seen before to achieve financial freedom. He has the distinction of being the first in his industry to ever open an office in Inyokern. You can reach him at 760-377-3267 or

Story First Published: 2018-07-27