Monday, November 28, 2011

Penny Wise, Pound wiser!

Confession....Im a chartered accountant, Im supposed to be doling out financial advice by the kilo everyday, but this is the first time Im actually doing it.

Disclaimer.. The advice in this post is not going to make you a millionaire. (It may however help you take an unplanned vacation)

Listed below are everyday tips, little snippets of advice to make your money work harder for you.

1) Say NO to plastic: This advice is as good for you as it is for the planet. As convenient and comfortable as it is, credit cards are the invisible monster under the bed. Majority of us shy away from taking loans (bank or otherwise) but dont mind paying an interest of almost 36% on our credit card outstanding balance. Make it a rule to use it only in an absolute emergency...And no, "I will absolutely die if I dont have those Aldo heels" is not an emergency.

2)Save first: When I was battling with sky high rent and cost of living and partying in Mumbai I learnt a valuable lesson. As soon as your salary is credited into your account, put some away. The best way to do it is a recurring deposit. Same amount every month.Pre- decide what you can save and stick to it, so that you are not tricked by the gleam of that Tissot watch. Another way to do it is to hike up your contribution to PF, do it, so when your salary comes to you itself you have saved. Its all sitting quietly in a corner earning away interest @ 9%.

3)Cash and carry: Especially when you are going out with a huge group and its likely to be a Dutch affair, carry cash. As much as you think you will need to clear your share of the bill. In the alcohol and friendship induced stupor you clear the bill with your plastic and tell yourself you will collect from others,but its a huge pain for your sober self to do and very often doesnt yield the required results.

4) Shop smart: This is a rule I cant follow myself. Silly as it sounds shopping for food is what makes me broke sometimes. More so when I walk into a store with the colourful peppers, the imported chocolate and cheese and fruit preserves and pasta sauces and balsamic vinegars, I just cant seem to stop. If food is my weakness, shoes or watches or clothes maybe yours.What I have decided to do is make a list of what I want, never shop when Im hungry/ emotionally unstable (the former can induce the latter for me though) and allow myself one thing thats not on my list.

5) Waste not: Often we spend on things that we dont have to or even want to, like paying bills late,unused club/ gym memberships, delaying the maintenance on your vehicle, letting your insurance lapse. Organise your monthly/ anuual payments by setting reminders for yourself. Keeping things up to date will ensure you dont spend on late payment fees and that you dont find yourself vulnerable in an emergency!


Srinidhi said...

now i desperately need saving advice. I feel guilty month after month, having no clue where my money went. :\

I have decided to get a RD done next month. And I will save. Hopefully much more than I do now. :)

My biggest problem is not knowing where I spent it. Keeping track helps i assume. :D

Super post. Needed for people like me. :D

Towards Harmony said...

Brilliantly written D!

Simple, Practical tips that are intelligently conveyed!


Psych Babbler™ said...

Great tips...I must admit I am guilty of using my credit card but I do my best to pay it off within 55 days (because I get charged interest after that!) Fortunately I get paid fortnightly so it's a bit easier to save than being paid monthly and saving!

Between life's doings said...

totally love how crisp and practical this post is! I love the pun on plastic :-) I spend like a hippie and I am not too guilty about it, but there are times when I wish I had some savings to do some big stuff, I need to "settle down" and be more responsible but I have a hubby doing that for me so for now its hippie time! :-)

D!! said...

Srinidhi: Get that RD started..u will love how u have a huge chunk of money to buy a kick ass camera within months.

P: thanks!!

Psych Babbler: Welcome to my blog. I wish i got paid much easier to paln and spend.

A: Good for you! Maybe this blog post was for ur hubby then! ;)

Kushang Moorthy said...

You should have just named it 'Kushang' :P but a great post (had to be as its about me) ;)

♫♪♥PhilO♥♪♫ said...

It's not easy to follow these advices :P Especially when us girls, are such big shopping freaks who want to buy anything and everything :P

D!! said...

Kush.. its not about you..its just inspired from an event in your life :P

PhilO: Thanks for reading! Yeah it is difficult but its for us women who love to shop that it is important we have the money to indulge no?

shuuuu said...

I just started an RD.. and I feel responsible already :P ... Completely agree with cash and carry.. especially in a place like Delhi where everyone is just waiting to find an Idiot to pay for them... About the Shooping :P:P I'm not going to say much*quickly hides*...
Waste Not.... that is something I am still learning.. everything seems so appealing when you look at it in a store..
Lovedd this post... absolutely loved it..