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Recently, A young enthusiast asked me about the importance of saving. His parents asked him to start saving but he (like most of us during youth) want to enjoy present life and didn’t want to give up on any comforts for the sake of future. Well, to some extent both (in their shoes) are right. Savings is essential but it does not mean that you should sacrifice on each and every thing, otherwise money will become definition of your life. It also does not imply that you start enjoying present without giving thought to future.
There are negative effects to both sides: Savers often end up with ‘regrets’ and spenders with ‘financial problems’ in future. What is required is equilibrium which can be answered by How, When & Where to save.
Let’s take a look –
Does more earning mean more savings? That does not make sense always. Have you ever noticed why some people are very good at saving and others find it difficult to save? It depends upon personal money handling habits. To an extent saving habits depends on your brought-up, cultural factors. However, psychology decides the way you look at money. There are savers and spenders. Spenders love to spend money on current to enjoy life rather than saving it for future. They find their happiness in buying and comfort. Savers on the other hand – don’t enjoy losing money and gets excited when they see their savings grow.
If you are a spender then try to make your transactions in cash or debit card. Keep credit cards usage limited. A few changes like cutting on trips to grocery stores, unnecessary entertainment, Budgeting for expenses, keeping fixed cost low can help a lot in saving money.
Saving at right time is very important. Moving a fixed part of your salary as saving on regular basis can help you save better and automatically put limits on your spending. If we go by thumb rule then 25% of your salary should go to savings but not less than 15%. These days it is often known as ‘Pay to yourself first’. This small step can save and accumulate large sum over long term (compounding).
Saving in right instruments and doing the right purchases could help you save more. Buying in bulk/wholesale for nonperishable products will give you happiness of buying right and saving money. However, there are certain areas where saving money should not be given importance e.g. cheap products for health, food. This will often end up with high expenses towards health and Doctor visits. Health is wealth and therefore where to save is important to understand.
Don’t make savings “goal” of your life but accept it as a part of lifestyle so that it will not be stressful.