Cultivating the habit of savings is a very important one; this habit can help you in many aspects of life. A good saver can save out funds for business, a good saver is debt free, a good saver has already made a right and bold step to financial freedom, a good saver can reach certain goals that can’t be ordinarily attained with the limited revenues he gets.
Cultivating a savings culture is always ideal, but is never easy. Savings entails starving yourself off certain wants and pleasures, and that takes a lot of discipline. Many people want to save, many people wish they could save, but just few save at the end of the day.
There are certain ways you can cultivate a savings culture.
1. ASSESS YOUR FINANCIAL HEALTH
The first major step to savings is assessing your financial health; this would help you know the direction you’re headed and how to get there. You need to have a clear picture of your income and expenses, you need to know what takes the bulk of your money, and also try to ascertain whether you’re spending more than you earn. When you have this figured out then you can move to the next step.
2. HAVE A BUDGET
Having a budget would help guide you on what you ought to spend your money on and what you shouldn’t. With a budget, you would know your needs and wants and have a clear picture of how to cut down on spending on your wants. Wanting to satisfy your wants would make you unable to save. A budget would help you plan better, save better and cut down unnecessary expenses.
3. KEEP TRACK OF YOUR SPENDING
Your spending habits would determine if you would be a successful saver or not. Keep track of your daily lifestyle and what you spend your money on. After assessing where your money goes, look for ways you can minimise how much you spend.
4. HAVE A TARGET
The best way to save is having a target; saving without a target might not keep you motivated, but saving for a target keeps you motivated and focused. Have a realistic goal and save towards it.
5. BE DEBT FREE
Try as much as possible to live a life free of debts. Manage your finances judiciously and avoid having to collect loans; live according to your budget, this would help you in the long run.
6. SAVE FOR EMERGENCIES
Emergencies happen all the time; this is something we have no control over, and the best way to handle emergency is to save, so you won’t be left out of the dark. Set about 5% of your income monthly to save for emergencies, so you wouldn’t be left in the dark when the situation arises. Your emergency savings should be different from your normal savings.
7. PRETEND YOU’RE PAYING OFF A LOAN
The best way to frame your mind-set towards savings is to pretend you’re paying off a debt. Continue making the monthly payments into your savings account. Even after you reach your set goal, never stop this habit.
8. SET YOUR MIND TOWARDS SAVING
Having your mind geared towards saving would help you save better. Also, if you notice you still have money left at the end of the month, rather than spend it unwisely, the best bet is to save it. This would help you reach your goal faster.
9. SET A FIXED PERCENTAGE
The best way to save is by setting a fixed percentage to be saved monthly. This way, when your income increases, your savings would increase as well.
10. TRY TO AVOID GATHERINGS AND FRIENDS THAT WOULD GIVE YOUR SAVINGS A SETBACK
Friends are important, but when you have friends that won’t let you save, it’s best to minimise the way you see them. Gatherings and friends that prompt you to spend money won’t only kill your savings but might even push you to spend above your earnings.
These tips would help you imbibe a savings culture, and you cannot overemphasize the power of savings.
Culled from El Crema