What we learned from COVID-19?

14 percent of COVID-19 patients who died were less than 45 years, 34.8 percent were 45-60 years, 42 per cent were 60-75 years, 9.2 percent were over 75 years. This means that 48.8 percent of those who died were aged less than 60 years.

https://indianexpress.com/article/india/covid-19-coronavirus-deaths-india-age-6388085/

As we read these statistics, it left us wondering:

  • Had anyone expected such a day to come in their lives out of the blue? Had they prepared themselves and their families financially for such a day?
  • How about their loved ones and dependents? Not only do they have to cope with the magnitude of loss but at the same time they have to prepare themselves for the unavoidable eventuality of inheritance matters and personal finance continuity.
  • Had they documented their personal finance assets in detail, fixed the gaps in their personal finance assets (that would lead to a smooth inheritance or transfer of these personal finance assets), made a will, and informed their loved ones and dependents about it?

We suspect that the answer to each of these questions is a “very unlikely”.

How young is too young to make a will?

Short answer: You’re never young enough to make a will!

It’s a simple question really. God forbid, if something unfortunate were to happen to you, would you rather ensure a smooth financial continuity for your loved ones and dependents or would you rather that they go through hardship and run from pillar to post claiming what is rightfully and financially theirs?

When you’re earning, young, and carefree, making a will is most certainly the last thing on your mind. “A will? No, it’s not for me, certainly not at this age!” is the usual line of thought. Unfortunately, that line of thought continues through the years as you age and you have family and dependents.

Perhaps you bought your own house, picked up a big ticket home loan for that purchase, and forgot to back it up with adequate loan-linked life insurance. You also forgot to make a will and then one day, out of the blue, God forbid, something unfortunate happens to you! Just imagine the plight of your dependents and loved ones…without that will!

We all know someone who has been through such a situation, we sympathise with them, and yet, we don’t take action ourselves…because, remember, “A will? No, it’s not for me, certainly not at this age!”

Through sthana.ai, we have a big ambition to change everyone’s thinking about managing their personal finances. Have a home loan without backing it up with life insurance? Our smart algorithms will nudge and guide you towards securing that (i.e. what’s the best option for you that’s currently available in the market). Haven’t made a will? No worries, we’ll guide you through the process and ensure the financial security of your loved ones.

Stay tuned as we launch our product very soon!

How important is a nomination?

nomination: the act of officially suggesting someone

In our world of personal finance we extend that to:

nomination: the act of officially suggesting someone as the next in line for our personal finance assets

Many of us at sthana.ai have been through unfortunate situations where we inherited a personal finance asset but could do nothing about it simply because that personal finance asset did not have a nomination associated with it. That led us down the rabbit hole of intestacy (the condition of the estate of a person who dies without having in force a valid will or other binding declaration such as a nomination) and years of waiting until one almost loses interest in the personal finance asset inherited.

Each of us can definitely do better especially in today’s modern world of personal finance services available at our fingertips. Each of us can definitely do better for our loved ones and not have them running down the same rabbit hole we spoke of earlier. Have a bank account that does not have a nomination or has an outdated nomination? No problem, most internet banking services allow you to add or update a nominee in an instant.

You just need to know where such gaps exist in your personal finance landscape and you just need a nudge that points you in the right direction.

That’s where sthana.ai’s algorithm-driven intelligence comes into play. It nudges you in the right direction and encourages you take timely and appropriate action and be rewarded for it!

Stay tuned for our launch coming very soon!

How well do you know your personal finance landscape?

How often have you stopped for a moment and thought about your personal finance landscape? Everything that happened, most often, since you started working and entered the maze of savings, expenses, and investments. Within a very short time your personal finance landscape could include:

  • Savings accounts
  • Fixed deposits
  • Debit cards
  • Credit cards
  • Insurance policies
  • Real estate
  • Gold
  • Mutual Funds
  • Provident Funds
  • Equities
  • Pension Funds
  • Loans
  • Crowd-funding investments
  • Time-share investments
  • and more!

And we haven’t yet gotten down to the sub-categories. Take insurance for example: You typically have life insurance, health insurance (your own + the one provided by your employer), vehicle insurance, loan-linked insurance, and more! The problem is exponential.

A few questions to consider:

  • Do you know every minute aspect of your personal finance landscape?
  • Have you properly documented every aspect of your personal finance landscape?
  • Do you know what the gaps in your personal finance landscape are? For example: Does that life insurance policy have a nomination assigned? Does that large home-loan have a loan-forgiveness insurance (should something unfortunate happen to you)?
  • Have you properly addressed the gaps in your personal finance landscape? For example: If a nomination is outdated have you taken the steps to update the nomination?
  • Have you created a will for your personal finance landscape?

It is imperative that each of us knows our own personal finance landscape in order to ensure the financial safety and well-being of your immediate loved ones.

This is our vision for sthana.ai – to ensure that you are very safely positioned within your personal finance landscape. sthana.ai’s algorithms help you identify all gaps in your personal finance landscape and take immediate corrective action through it’s guided action templates.

We’re excited about what sthana.ai can do for you. Stay tuned for more details in the coming days.

COVID-19 and the genesis of sthana.ai

The idea for sthana.ai has been germinating (!) in our minds for quite some time now – actually, for a few years, due to our personal life experiences. COVID-19 helped nudge this idea towards reality because we saw that the management of personal finances – rather, a lack of it – becomes front and center in these uncertain times.

We’ve been asking ourselves these questions:

  • Do we really know the full-picture of our personal finances?
  • Are our personal finances documented anywhere?
  • Do we know the “gaps” in our personal finances? Missing nominations on personal finance accounts, legacy/paper-based personal finance investments (from an era before!) that have disappeared from view, credit cards and loans which are reported as active on your CIBIL report but which you have no idea about, and more.
  • Have we planned our personal finances for “life resilience”?
  • Have we ensured personal finance continuity for our loved ones should anything unexpected happen to us?

The overwhelming answer is NO. Managing personal finances is always a task for another day that never comes!

From our own experiences as well as from others we posed these questions to.

As founders of sthana.ai and being extremely conversant with personal finances, we haven’t done this ourselves!

COVID-19 has laid this bare. There’s no question that this experience should make us sit up, take notice of our personal finances as it stands today, and start to manage it for the next bad day.

Our vision for sthana.ai is this:

A software-powered personal finance assistant to help you document your personal finances, identify and plug gaps in your personal finance completeness, and ensure personal finance continuity for your loved ones.

We humbly realize that this is a very bold mission statement and there will, no doubt, be many challenges as we execute upon this mission but we truly want to make a difference in everyone’s life by equipping you to manage your personal finances rather that letting it manage you.

Note: In case you’re wondering, sthana means position. And we want you to be in the best possible personal finance position.

Team sthana.ai