Dina Bhudia is the CEO of the P2M Group and an independent financial adviser. She has been in the financial business for over 25 years. Her company was set up in 2002 to provide financial advice on mortgaging, lending and to encourage more British Indians to purchase properties the right way.
iGlobal got in a discussion with the pioneer to talk about her experiences as a woman in the property market and exchange views on mortgages, taxes and more for the iMoney Show at iGlobal Radio.
Here are some highlights from the discussion:
What inspired you to become a financial adviser?
Coming from a traditional orthodox Gujarati family, building properties is in the blood stream. However, language became a bit of a barrier in that generation. There needed to be a medium where I could: translate the financial jargon into basic English, basic Gujarati, Hindi and our native languages.
Traditionally it was male dominated – they did the finances, they were the people who went to speak to the bank managers. I felt that with the evolvement of finance and women going out to work, there was a need for women to understand the financial sector a lot more.
Fortunately, I was based in the heart, Wembley [north London]. That is where my career had taken off because of the demographics and the nature of the people around. They promoted me, they did what our culture does, which is recommend and refer. It was sort of combining my community driven ethics but in the financial world.
People would come to see me to fill their electricity or gas bills because they didn’t know how to do it. It was a two-way process of building confidence in them. I had to give in a lot more than my male colleagues, just to build my name and build a client bank. I think being a woman and Asian, back in the 90s, had to give more anyway in finance.
As far as the property market is concerned, is it the right time to buy? Are property prices stable?
I think the property market is stable. Whether the prices are going down, I don’t think so. I think on the property side, we are going to ride through this quite well.
Whether it’s the right time to buy, I’ll go back to my comment: If it’s the right time for you to buy, it is the right time to buy. When the property prices are stable, I think what you will find is that the interest rates are low. So, the power of your money, if you were to borrow a high sum of money, it’s cheaper borrowing, the monthly instalments are affordable.
On the contrary, when you find the property prices going up, you will find interest rates will go up. It’s a double whammy! The level of money you will have to inject on a monthly basis would be higher. I think there is opportunity and possibility, more opportunity outside of the London area than ever before.