Ramit Sethi’s 85% Solution to take quick financial decisions

2 min readJan 15, 2022
Photo by Hans-Peter Gauster on Unsplash

Getting started is more important than becoming an expert. I’d rather act and get it 85 percent right than do nothing.

-Ramit Sethi

I was reminded of this when a friend, after reading my yesterday’s article on fee-based planners, commented that fee-based planners may also be getting commission from the financial institutions.

I agree that this is possible in some cases.

Yet, this effort to look for a foolproof solution usually leads to “analysis paralysis”.

I have seen this happening with many friends. They spent considerable time, searching for the “best” mutual fund scheme, or health insurance plan or a life insurance plan. They never found one.

Ramit Sethi’s “85% Solution”

it is better to take an imperfect decision within a reasonable period rather than wait forever looking for a perfect decision.

  • There are no perfect solutions.
  • Postponing a financial decision can be costly. The 85% solution forces you to decide. While delaying an investment decision can cost money, delaying an insurance decision can cost lives.

How to take quick financial decisions, Ramit Sethi style!

  • Set a pre-defined period to learn the basics. Two to three days are enough to learn the basics. You are unlikely to learn anything new after that. Choose a product based on your learnings. Again, you should have a timeframe for taking the decision. A few hours are enough to compare and decide on the products.
  • Alternatively, outsource the decision by hiring a fee-based planner. As for my friend’s concern about the impartiality of fee-based planners, you can use a simple test. If a fee-based planner ever refers you to a broker rather than advising you to use online channels, you should run away.

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Driven to Learn. Driven to Improve. Driven to Share. Excel and Personal Finance enthusiast.