Lai Jia Jun

Financial Services Consultant

My Personal Story

My life was a rollercoaster as I was growing up.

In my early days my family was quite financially stable and I did not have to worry about money. My allowance was about triple of what my peers would have in primary school and my parents never told me what not to spend on.

As a result, I never knew how to save and spent frivolously.

What I did not know however, was that my dad was accruing debts and unable to pay them off as my parents did not know how plan for their finances. My parents would often quarrel and argue about money and it would culminate in my dad beating my mum.

Since then, I swore to myself to never end up like my dad when it came to my finances. It came to a point where eventually my dad nearly declared bankruptcy when I was 12.

This was avoided only because my uncle lent a sum of money to my dad to repay the debts first. While my dad repaid my uncle eventually, things were never the same again.

My parents got divorced and I juggled between staying with my mum and my dad.

My mum was a housewife and as such having to go into the workforce again was not easy for her and I experienced what it was like to be ‘poor’ while staying with my mum as we moved from one room flats to one room flats, while waiting for a BTO.

Due to my brother being a special needs individual, my mum eventually managed to get her own BTO when I was 17 but we knew that her CPF would not be enough to pay for the mortgage beyond 7 years.

7 years later, I am currently 24 years old and in university. However, our fears came true as my mum can longer service her mortgage through cpf and we are now just waiting for me to graduate, to get a job so I can pay for the mortgage for the house.

My dad meanwhile, had to borrow my bursary money which I received for my Uni expenses, to pay off his credit card debts. As my parents got older, currently in their fifties, they were also more prone to illnesses.

My mum has diabetes and heart problems and just recently we found out there are problems with her liver as well whereas my dad has other health problems such a high blood cholesterol. As such, my parents would often say ‘In Singapore, you can afford to die, but you cannot afford to be sick’.

Seeing all these happen made me realize the importance of planning our finances prudently and wisely, which is why I got into this industry in the first place.

Apart from having the goal to be able to pay off my uni fees and not take any more allowance from my dad, most importantly, I truly believe that the knowledge of financial planning as well as being protected needs to be started from a young age, to avoid ending up like my parents, where it is too late to buy insurance for them and they simply do not have enough to retire.

To say we are not in it for the money entirely is a lie, but beyond that, there will always be some other motivation pushing us to take up the challenge of being a financial planner even with the negative stigma surrounding this industry.

For me, it is to enable the people I care about to have a better future even when mishaps happen and to be able to retire comfortably.

Lai Jia Jun

Financial Services Consultant

Story

My life was a rollercoaster as I was growing up.

In my early days my family was quite financially stable and I did not have to worry about money. My allowance was about triple of what my peers would have in primary school and my parents never told me what not to spend on.

As a result, I never knew how to save and spent frivolously.

What I did not know however, was that my dad was accruing debts and unable to pay them off as my parents did not know how plan for their finances. My parents would often quarrel and argue about money and it would culminate in my dad beating my mum.

Since then, I swore to myself to never end up like my dad when it came to my finances. It came to a point where eventually my dad nearly declared bankruptcy when I was 12.

This was avoided only because my uncle lent a sum of money to my dad to repay the debts first. While my dad repaid my uncle eventually, things were never the same again.

My parents got divorced and I juggled between staying with my mum and my dad.

My mum was a housewife and as such having to go into the workforce again was not easy for her and I experienced what it was like to be ‘poor’ while staying with my mum as we moved from one room flats to one room flats, while waiting for a BTO.

Due to my brother being a special needs individual, my mum eventually managed to get her own BTO when I was 17 but we knew that her CPF would not be enough to pay for the mortgage beyond 7 years.

7 years later, I am currently 24 years old and in university. However, our fears came true as my mum can longer service her mortgage through cpf and we are now just waiting for me to graduate, to get a job so I can pay for the mortgage for the house.

My dad meanwhile, had to borrow my bursary money which I received for my Uni expenses, to pay off his credit card debts. As my parents got older, currently in their fifties, they were also more prone to illnesses.

My mum has diabetes and heart problems and just recently we found out there are problems with her liver as well whereas my dad has other health problems such a high blood cholesterol. As such, my parents would often say ‘In Singapore, you can afford to die, but you cannot afford to be sick’.

Seeing all these happen made me realize the importance of planning our finances prudently and wisely, which is why I got into this industry in the first place.

Apart from having the goal to be able to pay off my uni fees and not take any more allowance from my dad, most importantly, I truly believe that the knowledge of financial planning as well as being protected needs to be started from a young age, to avoid ending up like my parents, where it is too late to buy insurance for them and they simply do not have enough to retire.

To say we are not in it for the money entirely is a lie, but beyond that, there will always be some other motivation pushing us to take up the challenge of being a financial planner even with the negative stigma surrounding this industry.

For me, it is to enable the people I care about to have a better future even when mishaps happen and to be able to retire comfortably.