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Ramalingam Kalirajan  |4759 Answers  |Ask -

Mutual Funds, Financial Planning Expert - Answered on Jun 22, 2024

Ramalingam Kalirajan has over 23 years of experience in mutual funds and financial planning.
He has an MBA in finance from the University of Madras and is a certified financial planner.
He is the director and chief financial planner at Holistic Investment, a Chennai-based firm that offers financial planning and wealth management advice.... more
Hemanti Question by Hemanti on Jun 22, 2024Hindi

Hi I m 49 year old I have monthly income of 1 lakh . I have 25 thousand of investment monthly. I have personal loan of 9 lakh I will retired at 60 . I have a planning of purchasing home of 50 lakh . Kindly suggest.

Ans: First of all, it's great to see you're proactive about your financial future. At 49, with a monthly income of Rs 1 lakh and investing Rs 25,000 monthly, you're on a solid path. Let's plan how you can manage your personal loan, save for retirement, and purchase a home worth Rs 50 lakh.

Understanding Your Current Financial Position
You have a monthly income of Rs 1 lakh and a personal loan of Rs 9 lakh. You invest Rs 25,000 monthly, which is commendable. Your goal is to retire at 60 and buy a home worth Rs 50 lakh. Let's break down how you can achieve these goals.

Managing Your Personal Loan
Importance of Reducing Debt
Your personal loan of Rs 9 lakh is a significant liability. Paying off this loan should be a priority to free up your cash flow and reduce financial stress. Personal loans usually have high-interest rates, which can eat into your savings.

Accelerating Loan Repayment
Consider allocating more funds towards your loan repayment. This might mean temporarily reducing your monthly investments. Paying off the loan faster will save you money on interest and improve your financial stability.

Balancing Loan Repayment and Investments
You don't want to stop investing altogether. Find a balance where you can pay extra towards your loan while still investing a portion of your income. This ensures you continue to build your future corpus while managing your debt.

Strategic Investment Planning
Review Your Investment Portfolio
Review your current investments to ensure they align with your long-term goals. Are you investing in a mix of equity and debt instruments? Diversification is key to managing risk and maximizing returns.

Benefits of Actively Managed Funds
Actively managed funds can offer higher returns compared to index funds. Fund managers actively select stocks, aiming to outperform the market. This can be beneficial for growing your investments faster.

Regular Investments and SIPs
Continue with your SIPs, but ensure they are in high-performing funds. Even small, regular investments can grow significantly over time due to compounding. Review the performance of your funds periodically.

Saving for Retirement
Estimating Retirement Corpus
You aim to retire at 60, which gives you 11 years to save. Estimate how much you will need for a comfortable retirement. Consider inflation and your expected lifestyle expenses.

Increasing Retirement Contributions
If possible, gradually increase your monthly investment contributions. Even a small increase can make a big difference over time. Automate your investments to ensure consistency.

Asset Allocation for Retirement
A good mix of equity and debt can help you achieve a balance between growth and stability. As you approach retirement, gradually shift towards safer, more stable investments.

Planning for Home Purchase
Evaluating Home Purchase Decision
Buying a home worth Rs 50 lakh is a big financial commitment. Ensure it fits within your long-term financial plan without straining your finances. Consider all costs, including down payment, EMIs, maintenance, and property taxes.

Saving for Down Payment
Start saving for the down payment. Typically, a down payment is 20% of the property's value, so for a Rs 50 lakh home, you'll need Rs 10 lakh. Allocate a portion of your monthly savings towards this goal.

Home Loan Considerations
If you plan to take a home loan, compare interest rates and terms from different lenders. Aim for a shorter loan tenure to save on interest. Ensure your EMI is manageable within your monthly budget.

Tax Efficiency and Benefits
Utilizing Tax-Saving Instruments
Maximize your tax-saving investments under Section 80C. This includes contributions to PPF, EPF, and ELSS. Tax savings can enhance your overall returns and help you build a larger corpus.

Regular Fund Investments
Investing through a certified financial planner can provide professional advice. Regular funds, despite higher expense ratios, come with expert guidance, which can optimize your portfolio and returns.

Creating an Emergency Fund
Importance of an Emergency Fund
An emergency fund is crucial to cover unexpected expenses. This ensures you don't have to dip into your long-term investments during financial crises.

Building the Fund
Aim to save at least 6-12 months' worth of expenses in a liquid account. Allocate a portion of your monthly savings until you reach this target. This fund should be easily accessible in emergencies.

Insurance and Risk Management
Adequate Life Insurance
Ensure you have adequate life insurance coverage to protect your family financially. Term insurance is a good option as it provides high coverage at a low premium.

Health Insurance
A comprehensive health insurance plan is essential to cover medical emergencies. This prevents large out-of-pocket expenses that can disrupt your savings and investments.

Regular Monitoring and Rebalancing
Periodic Portfolio Review
Regularly review your investment portfolio to ensure it aligns with your goals. Markets and personal circumstances change, requiring adjustments to your strategy. A certified financial planner can assist with these reviews.

Rebalancing Your Portfolio
Rebalancing involves adjusting your investments to maintain your desired asset allocation. For example, if equities have grown significantly, sell some and reinvest in underperforming assets. This helps manage risk and stay on track with your goals.

Maximizing Your Savings
Budgeting and Expense Management
Track your expenses to identify areas where you can save more. Create a budget and stick to it. This ensures you have more funds available for investments and loan repayment.

Increasing Savings Rate
As your income grows, aim to increase your savings rate. Even small increments can significantly impact your final corpus due to the power of compounding. Automate savings to ensure consistency.

Leveraging Employer Benefits
Provident Fund Contributions
Ensure you maximize your contributions to the Employee Provident Fund (EPF). This is a safe and tax-efficient way to build your retirement corpus.

Voluntary Provident Fund (VPF)
Consider contributing to the Voluntary Provident Fund (VPF) if you can save more. VPF offers the same benefits as EPF, with guaranteed returns and tax benefits.

Long-Term Investment Strategies
Compounding Power
The power of compounding cannot be overstated. The earlier you start investing, the more your money grows over time. Regular investments and reinvesting returns accelerate growth.

Staying Invested
Market fluctuations are normal. Stay invested for the long term to ride out volatility. Equity markets tend to deliver good returns over extended periods.

Avoiding Emotional Decisions
Investment decisions should be based on logic, not emotions. Avoid making impulsive decisions based on market movements. A certified financial planner can provide an objective perspective.

Planning for Inflation and Taxes
Inflation Protection
Inflation can erode your purchasing power over time. Ensure your investments grow faster than inflation. Equities and other high-growth investments generally outpace inflation.

Tax Planning
Tax-efficient investing is crucial. Utilize available tax deductions and exemptions. For instance, investments in PPF, EPF, and certain mutual funds offer tax benefits. Consult with a tax advisor to optimize your tax strategy, ensuring you retain more of your returns.

Final Insights
Managing your personal loan, saving for retirement, and planning to buy a home are significant financial goals. With disciplined savings and strategic investments, you can achieve these goals. Focus on reducing your personal loan, maximizing your savings, and investing wisely. Regularly review and adjust your financial plan to stay on track. With consistent efforts and careful planning, you can secure a comfortable retirement and fulfill your dream of purchasing a home.

Best Regards,

K. Ramalingam, MBA, CFP,

Chief Financial Planner,

DISCLAIMER: The content of this post by the expert is the personal view of the rediffGURU. Users are advised to pursue the information provided by the rediffGURU only as a source of information to be as a point of reference and to rely on their own judgement when making a decision.

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Ramalingam Kalirajan  |4759 Answers  |Ask -

Mutual Funds, Financial Planning Expert - Answered on Apr 17, 2024

Asked by Anonymous - Jan 22, 2024Hindi
I am 55 yrs of age I have cash in hand payment of 80000. I need to buy a house of 1 cr when i retire at 50 I will be retiring with pension and medical cover Thks
Ans: There seems to be a discrepancy in the information provided. You mentioned you are 55 years old and want to buy a house of 1 crore when you retire at 50. It's likely you meant 60 instead of 50 for your retirement age.

Here's how I can help you considering a retirement age of 60:

Planning for a House Purchase:

Investment Timeframe: You have 5 years (assuming retirement at 60) to accumulate the remaining amount for the house (Rs. 1 crore - Rs. 80,000) = Rs. 9,20,000.

Investment Options: Given the shorter timeframe, consider options with a balance of growth potential and moderate risk:

Fixed Deposits (FDs): Secure investment with guaranteed returns, but interest rates might not outpace inflation.
Debt Mutual Funds: Potentially higher returns than FDs, but some market fluctuations are possible. Explore short-term debt funds or income funds for stability and regular interest payouts.
Here's a breakdown of two investment approaches (consult a financial advisor for personalization):

Approach 1: Prioritizing Safety (Focus on FDs)

Invest a major portion (around 70%) in FDs. Research and compare FD interest rates offered by different banks.
Consider a shorter tenure FD (like 3-year) to potentially ladder your investments and have some flexibility closer to your purchase.
Invest the remaining amount (around 30%) in low-risk debt funds for potentially higher returns.
Approach 2: Balancing Growth and Safety (Mix of FDs and Debt Funds)

Invest a portion (around 50%) in FDs for guaranteed returns.
Invest the remaining amount (around 50%) in debt funds with a slightly higher risk profile for potentially higher returns than FDs. Choose debt funds with a good credit rating.
Additional Tips:

Emergency Fund: Maintain an emergency fund with 3-6 months of living expenses to cover unexpected costs. Park this in a liquid instrument like a savings account.
Loan Options: Explore home loan options closer to your retirement. You might be eligible for senior citizen loan schemes with potentially lower interest rates. However, factor in the loan repayment burden after retirement.
Review and Rebalance: Regularly review your investment performance (at least annually) and adjust your strategy if needed.
Consulting a Financial Advisor:

A Certified Financial Planner (CFP) can analyze your financial situation, risk tolerance, and retirement plans. They can suggest a personalized investment strategy to reach your house purchase goal while considering your overall financial needs.


There are inherent risks involved in any investment. The above approaches provide a general framework.
Disciplined investment and staying invested for the long term are crucial for achieving your goals.

..Read more


Ramalingam Kalirajan  |4759 Answers  |Ask -

Mutual Funds, Financial Planning Expert - Answered on Apr 24, 2024

Asked by Anonymous - Apr 20, 2024Hindi
Hello sir, I am 33yr old. I have a salary of 50k/month. I m living in rented house 8k/month. And SIP of 5k/month. Other expenses of 5-8k/month. Please suggest financial planning. And wanted to buy house.
Ans: It's great that you're thinking about financial planning at 33. Let's craft a strategy tailored to your needs and goals.

Emergency Fund:
Goal: Build an emergency fund equal to 6-12 months of living expenses.
Action: Allocate a portion of your savings monthly until you reach this target. Aim to have this fund in a liquid and easily accessible account.
SIPs & Investments:
Current SIP: 5k/month
Action: Consider increasing your SIP amount as your income grows. Diversify investments across equity, debt, and other asset classes to manage risk and achieve growth.
Home Purchase:
Goal: Buy a house.
Action: Start saving for a down payment. Consider your current expenses and see where you can cut back or increase savings. Also, explore home loan options to understand the amount you'd need to borrow and the EMI you'd be comfortable with.
Retirement Planning:
Goal: Secure your retirement.
Action: Start an SIP specifically for retirement. The earlier you start, the better. Consider allocating a portion of your monthly savings to this SIP.
Goal: Protect yourself and your loved ones.
Action: Ensure you have health insurance, life insurance, and if possible, disability insurance. Review and update coverage as your circumstances change.
Additional Income:
Goal: Increase income streams.
Action: Explore opportunities for side hustles, freelancing, or upskilling to boost your income.
Goal: Manage expenses effectively.
Action: Create a monthly budget to track income and expenses. This will help you identify areas where you can save more.
Remember, financial planning is not a one-time activity. It's an ongoing process that requires regular review and adjustments as your life circumstances change. It's also essential to consult with a Certified Financial Planner to ensure your plan aligns with your goals, risk tolerance, and financial situation.

..Read more


Ramalingam Kalirajan  |4759 Answers  |Ask -

Mutual Funds, Financial Planning Expert - Answered on Jun 21, 2024

Asked by Anonymous - Jun 21, 2024Hindi
I am 34 years old, Monthly income 1.5L, I have 5L in stocks(India & US), 2.5L in MF (ELSS 1L, Flexi N small cap 10K each monthly SIP), Real estate - 2 plots around 50L, EPF - 4L, Gold - 5L, personal loan - 6L (31k EMI), I have adequate term and health insurance. I have a 3 year old kid, planning to retire at 50 years with adequate corpus to afford kids education and retirement. Please advise
Ans: It's great to see you actively planning your finances at 34, with a goal to retire by 50. You're on a strong financial footing with diversified investments. Let's assess your current portfolio and guide you towards achieving your retirement and child education goals.

You have taken commendable steps by diversifying your investments across stocks, mutual funds, real estate, EPF, and gold. Managing a monthly income of Rs 1.5 lakh while planning for retirement and your child's education shows your foresight and dedication. Balancing these responsibilities is not easy, and your proactive approach is impressive.

Assessing Your Current Investments

Stocks (India & US)

Your Rs 5 lakh investment in stocks is a good move for growth. Indian and US stocks provide diversification and potential for high returns. Regularly review these investments to align with your risk tolerance and market conditions.

Mutual Funds

You have Rs 2.5 lakh in mutual funds, including ELSS (Rs 1 lakh) and monthly SIPs in flexi-cap and small-cap funds. ELSS offers tax benefits under Section 80C, making it a smart choice. Flexi-cap and small-cap funds provide growth but can be volatile. Diversifying into balanced and large-cap funds can add stability.

Real Estate

You own two plots worth around Rs 50 lakh. Real estate is a good asset but can be illiquid. Avoid further investments in real estate and focus on more liquid options for flexibility.


Your EPF of Rs 4 lakh provides a safe and steady return, essential for long-term security. Continue contributing to EPF for its benefits in retirement planning.


Gold worth Rs 5 lakh is a good hedge against inflation and market volatility. It adds stability to your portfolio.

Personal Loan

You have a personal loan of Rs 6 lakh with an EMI of Rs 31,000. Prioritize repaying this loan to reduce financial stress and free up more funds for investment.

Setting Clear Financial Goals

To retire at 50 and afford your child's education, we need to estimate your required corpus. Consider living expenses, education costs, inflation, and life expectancy. Your current savings and investments are a solid start, but disciplined savings and strategic investments are essential.

Investment Strategy

Diversified Mutual Funds Portfolio

Actively managed mutual funds can be a great option. They offer the potential for higher returns compared to index funds. Certified Financial Planners (CFPs) can help you choose funds that align with your risk tolerance and goals. Regular funds, managed by skilled fund managers, often outperform the market, giving you an edge.

Systematic Investment Plan (SIP)

Investing in mutual funds through SIPs ensures regular investment without timing the market. SIPs inculcate discipline and can average out market volatility. Aim to allocate a significant portion of your monthly savings to SIPs. This will help you build a substantial corpus over time.

Balanced Funds

These funds offer a mix of equity and debt, providing growth potential with a cushion against market downturns. Balanced funds are less volatile compared to pure equity funds and can be a good addition to your portfolio for steady growth.

Equity Mutual Funds

Equity funds have the potential for high returns, especially over the long term. Diversify across large-cap, mid-cap, and small-cap funds to balance risk and return. Consult with your CFP to pick the right funds based on your risk appetite.

Existing Investments

Stocks and Crypto

You have Rs 2 lakhs in stocks and Rs 5 lakhs in crypto. These are high-risk, high-reward investments. Regularly review these investments with your CFP. Consider reallocating some funds from crypto to more stable investment options if it aligns with your risk tolerance.

Fixed Deposits

The Rs 30 lakh in fixed deposits is a safe option, providing stability. However, FD rates are typically lower than potential returns from mutual funds. Discuss with your CFP about gradually reallocating a portion of this amount into diversified mutual funds for better growth prospects.

Emergency Fund

Ensure you have an emergency fund equivalent to at least 6-12 months of your monthly expenses. This should be easily accessible and kept in a separate savings account or a liquid mutual fund. It provides a financial cushion in case of unforeseen events.

Retirement Planning

While focusing on your 7-year goal, don’t lose sight of long-term retirement planning. Consult your CFP to integrate retirement planning into your overall financial strategy. Diversify your investments to ensure a comfortable retirement while achieving your Rs 2 crore goal.

Insurance Coverage

Adequate insurance coverage is essential. Ensure you have sufficient life and health insurance. Life insurance should cover at least 10-15 times your annual income. Health insurance should cover your family adequately. This protects your financial plan from unforeseen events.

Tax Planning

Efficient tax planning helps you save and invest more. Utilize tax-saving instruments under Section 80C, 80D, and others. Investing in ELSS (Equity Linked Savings Scheme) mutual funds can help in tax saving while contributing to your investment goals. Consult your CFP to optimize your tax-saving strategy.

Review and Rebalance Portfolio

Regularly reviewing and rebalancing your portfolio is crucial. Markets fluctuate, and your investment allocations may drift from your original plan. Rebalancing helps in maintaining the desired risk level and aligns your portfolio with your financial goals. Your CFP can assist in this periodic review and adjustment.

Avoiding Common Pitfalls

Avoiding Index Funds

Index funds passively track market indices and may not offer the same growth potential as actively managed funds. Actively managed funds can outperform the market through strategic stock picking and risk management by professional fund managers.

Disadvantages of Direct Funds

Direct funds may seem cost-effective but lack professional advice. Investing through a Certified Financial Planner provides personalized advice, ensuring your investments align with your goals and risk profile. Regular funds, managed through an MFD with CFP credentials, can provide better guidance and performance tracking.

Final Insights

Building a corpus of Rs 2 crores in 7 years is an achievable goal with disciplined savings and smart investments. By focusing on diversified mutual funds, regular investments through SIPs, and periodic portfolio review, you can reach your target. Your current income and asset base provide a strong foundation. Utilize the expertise of a Certified Financial Planner to navigate your investment journey, ensuring your financial plan remains on track.

Stay committed to your financial plan, keep reviewing your progress, and make adjustments as needed. With consistent effort and informed decisions, you will achieve your financial goals.

Best Regards,

K. Ramalingam, MBA, CFP,

Chief Financial Planner,


..Read more

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