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Entertainment

Money talk with Chinkee Tan

STAR BYTES - Butch Francisco -

In 1987, Randy Santiago shot to fame and became so hugely popular that he needed people to clear the way for him every time he had to make public appearances. The men who protected him from the crowds were not the usual gun-toting bodyguards so identified with politicians and drug lords (why am I mentioning them in the same breath?). Those who protected Randy were young, decent and schooled gentlemen (some were affluent even) who later became known collectively as the Hawi Boys.

Soon after, some of these men also joined show business: Dennis Padilla, Jong Cuenco and Chinkee Tan. While Dennis and Jong had showbiz roots (their respective fathers, Dencio and Ernani, were in the entertainment profession), Chinkee had none.

I met him at the Excellance gym of Telly Garcia (Lorna Tolentino’s best friend) and I would overhear him and Keempee de Leon praying in one of the treatment rooms. Chinkee was already deep into his faith that time and was apparently guiding Keempee spiritually. After the prayer session, however, Chinkee would come out of the room and start selling goods to the other gym clients. That was how I recall him.

Today, he is a registered financial planner and the author of the book Till Debt Do Us Part, which I find useful and engrossing. It combines financial strategies and spirituality and it was a genius on his part to have done that.

Below, I asked Chinkee to share with the showbiz people and the public in general tips on how to stay financially stable in life.

 Being a comedian in the movies in a noontime show Lunch Date  and one of the Hawi Boys of Randy Santiago in the mid-’80s. I am very thankful and grateful to God that I was given an opportunity to be part of the entertainment industry. I have met very interesting and well-known people, from the great movie icon Fernando Poe Jr. down to the bit player and the crew of shooting unit. My contemporaries during my era are the likes of Keempee de Leon, Dingdong Avanzado, Jigo Garcia, Zoren Legaspi, Aljon Jimenez and others. One interesting thing is that most of the young stars make serious money during their hay days. I can still recall for an appearance fee of popular actors they can charge as much as P50,000 and to sing two additional songs (lip sync) it can go as high as P100,000 that was during the ‘80s. It was sure a lot of money even up to this time. Some of them made so much money not even a normal employee or Juan de la Cruz can make it on their lifetime. Looking now from the perspective of a financial coach there is a nagging question in my mind “How come some of them who made so much money during the height of their careers but in the end of it lost everything?”

Allow me to share with you some practical tips on how to make and keep your wealth.

Love your profession. Be a professional. Be excellent in what you are doing. Never be late for work. Do your best. Never take things for granted. What you do not value you lose. You will never know how important it is until you lose it.

Save! Save! Save! Remember it is not how much you make that is important but how much money you save. Even if you make P100,000 a month but if your lifestyle is at P120,000 a month you will be in debt. Even if you make only 20,000 a month but if you live below it you will be far of richer than the one who is making P100,000.

Be secure! Never compare yourself with other people. Being envious with other is not healthy. Two negative things happen, it is either you become proud that you are ahead of others or you become sad because others are ahead of you. They are both negative. The question we need to ask ourselves is that “Did you do your best and exert all effort?” If nothing happens it is not God’s will. Wait patiently for your time will come.

Invest! Invest! Invest! As you accumulate wealth make sure that invest it in the right places. I personally have invested some of my earnings in real estate and now I am having it leased and it is bringing me income even if I stop working. Questions you need to ask yourself “What if I stop working right now, will I still earn the money I need to support my lifestyle?” Let money work for you and do not work for money.

Learn before investing. People often complain about the high cost of learning. Allow me to reason with you about the high cost of ignorance. It is so difficult to earn and save money. But it is so easy to spend it. One wrong decision can cost you lifetime savings. Make sure before you invest ask, study and invest in something you understand. Learn before you earn. Read books, attend seminars and trainings that will enhance yourself.

One caution in investment. Avoid high risk investment. The higher the interest the higher the risk.

Diversify. Never put your eggs in one basket. You are only good as your last project. Reinvent yourself. You cannot be popular and stay in demand forever. So use your popularity as a leverage in order to create more opportunities for yourself. Get involved in business, as much as possible start something you love to do. If you have no experience in running a business partner with someone who has the experience.

Be a wise spender. Avoid overspending and out of control spending. If money comes in too quick there is a tendency for you to spend it also too fast. Since you will have the mindset that more money will come in later. You exposed yourself by buying jewelry, a condo, lot or a car through mortgage or monthly payments. My question is “What if the money making machine stops?” What will happen to things you acquired? It will all be taken away.

Buy in cash stay away from debt. When you buy it in cash it is yours. Statistics shows that you tend to spend more if you buy things in credit specially if you use your credit card. Do not fall into the 12 months zero interest scheme. Credit card is the most emotionless and painless way of spending money. But once the billing statement comes “Ouch!” the pain sets in.

Be humble and considerate. Keep your feet planted on the ground. Make friends while you are on your way up. Never be arrogant and insensitive. Be careful of what you become in what you pursue in life. The question you need to ask yourself in pursuing your dreams and aspirations in life is, “Is it bringing out the best in me or the worst in me?”

Remember money is very relative. The more money you have the more relatives you have. Just like in life, if you are rich and famous you have many friends and people like to hang out with you. But you will only know who your true friends are when you lose everything. Ask those who had been there, done that.

Hope this information will help and save you from pain and heartaches. As for me I do not believe in the saying “Experience is the best teacher.” Allow me to rephrase it by saying, learning from other people’s mistakes and experiences is the best teacher.

ALJON JIMENEZ CHINKEE DENCIO AND ERNANI DENNIS PADILLA DINGDONG AVANZADO FERNANDO POE JR. HAWI BOYS KEEMPEE MAKE MONEY
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