Saving Money is Difficult

Saving Money is Difficult

Saving Money is Difficult. We know that. In this article, we share with you reasons why you are not saving any money every month and what you can do to change that

Everyone wants to save money…..every single day. Then why are you not saving money and why does it feel so difficult to save a little daily!! Even we, (financial literacy practitioners at Sanchayan Society) find it difficult to save money every month on month. This kept bothering us and we finally sat down and discussed this to find the root causes of “non-savings” or “why we fail to save”? Some of the root causes for “non-savings” according to us are:

  • CAUSE 1 – At the end of the month, we save whatever we have left after our expenses and personal and household desires have been fulfilled.
  • CAUSE 2 – We don’t take savings seriously because we know that we will earn salary again next month, so we will save next month. Why bother too much now?
  • CAUSE 3 – As a couple, we don’t talk about savings as much as we should. We talk more about expenses and our needs.
  • CAUSE 4 – We push savings to the end of the month. Money if finite and finishes every month, before we reach the decision on how much we have to save this month.
  • CAUSE 5 – Unforeseen expenses like repairs & maintenance or buying a air conditioner or some kitchen appliance takes up the balance, leaving nothing.
  • Other personal or psychological factors

So, after analyzing the root behavioural causes why we don’t save every month, what can we do practically so that we actually start saving money?

Below we list some easy ways for you to start saving money every month:

  1. Transfer Savings on Salary Day – Decide and immediately transfer a percentage of your salary to a separate bank account on the day that you receive your salary. This percentage can be 10% or 20% or more. You decide. But do it. Don’t debate it.
  2. Make Savings a Habit – Don’t postpone savings to next month…or next month….start this month. Make it a Good Habit and create a culture of savings among your children and family members.
  3. Talk about Savings – Take out time to talk about savings. Make savings a dining table discussion just like families talk about foreign holidays or buying property or gold while having their dinner.
  4. Save Daily – Save in a “gullak” a piggy bank that you can keep in your bedroom on the dressing table or bedside table. This age-old technique works wonders and before you can count, your piggy bank becomes heavy and full. Ready to go to the bank!!
  5. Teach Your Kids – It’s not easy to save money! We won’t lie to you. As a couple who teaches and preaches financial literacy, we find it difficult to save every month. But we have started now, with a little every month. Teach this to your kids. Leave a Legacy.
  6. Create an Emergency Budget – Yes, create a small emergency budget every month (even if you don’t use it) and keep that money away in a separate account. You can use this budget to buy kitchen appliances or household items when you need them so that you have manage to save even in that month. You can use this budget to fulfill your desires too, like buying a mobile or bike, car, etc.
  7. Plan your Budget – Last and most importantly, plan your budget with a 10% plus or minus variance. So, your budget should not change by more than 10% every month. Identify, write down and spend as per budget and stick to that.

That’s all for now. We will keep posting simple articles on savings, personal finance, money management, expenses, holiday planning, travel, cash management, banking, insurance, and other personal finance concepts.

In our next article, we share 10 simple tips how you can save money every month.

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Credit Card Tips & Tricks

Credit Card Tips & Tricks

In this article we share with you some Tips & Tricks to use your credit card smartly

Almost all credit cards charge interest rate more than 40% if you fail to pay the amount due after the credit period which is around 1 month! How do you feel about using credit cards after knowing this fact – that credit cards charge interest rates of more than 40% !! Well, we feel the same way about credit cards. We don’t hate credit cards but you will agree that:

“A credit card should be the last option for you. You should only use your credit card only in case you face a severe emergency”

So, what are some easy to remember Tips & Tricks if you have to use a credit card and there is no other option. We share some easy tips for you to remember next time you use your credit card:

  • Don’t Overspend – We have a tendency to overspend when paying by a credit card.

  • Never store your card details – It can be misused. If you forget to uncheck the “auto-renewal” option, many companies charge your card for recurring payments when it becomes due, without your permission.

  • Never go for shopping with your credit card – We believe that “what you can afford to buy, you can afford to pay.” Use your debt card when shopping. Or wait till next month when you get your salary.

10 Tips to Save Money

10 Tips to Save Money

In this article, we will share 10 Tips to save money and how you can start saving every month

Everyone finds it difficult to save money…but everyone does want to save. All of us have different incomes. Some people earn more and some earn less. You should decide what percentage of your income you want to save every month, say 25% of your salary, and use the tips give below to achieve this goal.

Here we show you 10 Tips to Save Money every month:

  1. Reduce your Boradband Wifi plan – Towards the end of the billing cycle, observe how much wifi / broadband you have consumed this month. We found that we had subscribed to a 100GB broadband plan but we only using half of that, so we changed our plan and took a lower plan. We managed to save Rs. 800 every month. That becomes Rs. 10,000/- every year!
  2. Use cab sharing like Shuttl or Ola share or Uber pool – Make use of cab and bus-sharing services like Shuttl or Ola share or Uber pool that can help you to travel comfortably and also save money.
  3. Less eating out – Ordering food and drinks every alternate day is one of out biggest expenses as we are lazy to cook food. But now, we are learning to cook easy items and cut down on eating out. Outside food is also bad for health.
  4. Reduce your electricity Bill – Cut down on all extra lights and air conditioning when not required. This is age old advice but it works. We have tried this and saved money month on month.
  5. Change your Mobile plan – Switch your telecom provider if required and cut down on your mobile bills. We Indians are used to overpaying for basic communication service.
  6. Book Flight tickets in Advance – Yes, last minute flight tickets are costly, we all know that. Sometimes when you know your travel dates, always book your flight tickets in advance. We prefer low cost budget carriers like Indigo, spicejet, goair, air asia.
  7. Disconnect your Laptop adapter – As soon as your battery is 100% charged, disconnect that laptop adapter and start saving on electricity bill every month.
  8. Watch movies on weekdays evenings – Instead of watching movies on weekends when movie tickets are expensive, you can plan and watch movies on Wednesday or Thursday evenings when tickets are cheaper and theaters are less crowded.
  9. Buy Veggies on Weekends – For salaried professionals it is difficult to take out time in the evenings and generally we are tired after a hard day at work. But buying veggies on weekdays from wholesale markets or ‘mandis’ can help you save thousands every month.
  10. Plan your expenses – Easier said than done, but planning your expenses and keeping track of them is the way to go. We use a free mobile app called Walnut that automatically records our debit & credit card expenses and net banking transactions by reading the bank sms.

These 10 tips are easy and simple and won’t cost you too much time or money. Start using some of them and tell us what you think. Happy Saving!!

RBI Financial Literacy Guide

RBI Financial Literacy Guide

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has been making lots of efforts, initiatives & campaigns to promote financial inclusion and financial literacy in India. The Reserve Bank of India has created the “Raju” series of comics books to educate the youth and common people about banking and savings. This can be found online at:

http://www.rbi.org.in/financialeducation/

Under the direct guidance of Dr. K.C. Chakrabarty the RBI has continued the financial education series. Recently the RBI engaged NGOs, banks and organizations working in financial inclusion and financial literacy to develop comics stories relating to the following topics:

  • Why should one save?
  • Why save regularly and consistently?
  • Why save with banks?
  • Why start saving early?
  • Why open a bank account?
  • What is the difference between money and credit?
  • Why borrow responsibly?
  • Why borrow for income generating purposes?
  • Why repay loans in time? Repayment ethics
  • Why do you need insurance?
  • What are the benefits of being part of payment and settlement system?
  • Why you will need regular stream of income post working life – pension?
  • Why you should keep money aside regularly and consistently during your earning life for pension and old age?
  • What is interest? How moneylenders charge very high interest rates?

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) recently released the final version fo the booklets, guides and posters, acknowledging Sanchayan’s contribution. This can be downloaded here:

http://www.rbi.org.in/financialeducation/FinancialLiteracyGuide.aspx