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January 24, 2021

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Are you a do-it-yourselfer? 

The problem is that sometimes ways of learning can potentially leave you with a false sense of knowledge

By Kathi Dunlap
at Faith Investment Services

My husband is a contractor and I frequently go with him to do estimates for home projects. 

We walk in, meet the homeowners, and then begin listening to their desire for a new kitchen or bathroom or other remodeling project. It is quite common, as they are verbalizing their desires, to hear “I was watching HGTV and I saw…” as part of the narrative. 

Many people get ideas from places like Pinterest and HGTV and want to replicate those designs in their home. No problem, right?!

Problems arise when Pinterest or HGTV has created unrealistic expectations. Or when it has given the homeowner the belief that they could tackle such an “easy” project themselves. 

Or that it would all get done in one 30 minute episode!  We have been called in to fix things that are half-done or to create some grand design where the structure (and/or budget) does not allow.

Don’t misunderstand. It isn’t inherently wrong to watch HGTV or model your projects after them. I would, however, caution you that – unless you are a contractor or remodeler, watching these shows doesn’t make you an expert.  

The shows often do not portray the “behind the scenes” decisions that have been made and they can sometimes show very difficult or unrealistic things happening with ease.  The shows can leave you with false security and a false sense of knowledge about how to tackle home projects.

The same thing is often true in the financial world. 

Financial do-it-yourselfers listen to their favorite podcast or read snippets from their favorite news source or blog and “voila`” they are experts!  Put a few dollars in a Robinhood account or sign up with a robo-advisor and pretty soon, you’re a financial genius. 

The problem is – these platforms and ways of learning can potentially leave you with a false sense of knowledge.  You know what you know BUT you don’t know what you don’t know. 

Just like home improvement projects, if the foray into self-education is small enough and done in a controlled manner, you will likely learn some really valuable lessons.  But if you go too far or bite off too much, you could end up with a mess for someone else to fix.

Did you hear about the 20-year-old University of Nebraska student who took his own life in July after his Robinhood account showed a massive negative balance? 

While this example might seem extreme, it is reflective of the mess that can be made when you trust your finances to the self-taught model. 

We, at Faith Investment Services, believe financial education is paramount and we work with clients (and even those who are not current clients) to help them learn to navigate their financial choices. 

Contact us if you’d like to have a no obligation conversation to start getting a financial education.  Faith Investment Services can be contacted at 419-358-4207  or www.myfaithinvestments.com/contact

**The information within should not be considered as tax or legal advice. Neither Faith Investment Services, LLC nor the CFD companies offer legal or tax advice.  Advisory Services are offered through Creative Financial Designs, Inc., a Registered Investment Adviser, and Securities are offered through cfd Investments, Inc., a Registered Broker/Dealer, Member FINRA & SIPC, 2704 S. Goyer Rd., Kokomo, IN 46902. 765-453-9600. Faith Investment Services is independently owned and not controlled by the CFD Companies.  Neither Faith Investment Services, LLC nor the CFD companies offer legal or tax advice. 

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