Pinoys love spending, but it’s uncertain if we also love saving. If you want a more secure financial arrangement for the future, you should definitely start saving now. If you don’t know how, here are a few tips to help you get started:
Admit that you need to save
First things first: acknowledge the fact that you’re spending more than what you’re supposed to and throwing your hard-earned money at things you don’t need. Once you’ve accepted the fact that your spending habits are eventually going to lead you into a downward spiral of debt or bankruptcy, and that you should do everything in your power to stop it, then you’re taking a step in the right financial direction.
Forget the rich and famous
It’s not a bad thing to have famous people you look up to. Unfortunately, stalking their Instagram feeds and seeing how they shop and party may have a negative influence your buying decisions.
Recognize that celebrities don’t earn like the average Juan does and that the products they talk about on social media are often paid for by brands. It’s tempting to buy the same clothes they wear or tweet with the same sexy new smartphone they’re using. But the hard truth is that you can’t afford to spend like a celebrity.
If you’re determined to save money, you have to live within, and below your means. You’ll find yourself a little bit happier without the pressure of always having to fit in by having the right gadget or brand or car.
Think long term
It’s easy to live in the moment and reward yourself with material things. But you’ve got to think of the future. This means you need to think ahead and plan for situations that can potentially impact your finances. What if you suddenly lose your job? What if a member of your family gets sick? Having an emergency fund will ease the burden of these unfortunate situations.
Money experts recommend setting aside 3 months of your monthly expenditures to keep your basic needs covered while dealing with emergencies. Three months should be enough time for you to find a new source of income or to weather the storm of your new circumstances.
Use public transportation – or share a ride
It’s tempting to use a car or take a cab in order to avoid getting jostled in a crowded train or bus. But discomfort is a small price to pay if leaving the car in the garage can save you a few hundreds each week. Add up how much you need to pay for gas and parking during your commute to work, and compare how much cheaper it would be to travel by public transport. The money you could have paid for a more comfortable ride to work can go to your emergency fund or invested in your long-term goals.
If you really can’t stand getting pushed around in a public vehicle, cut down on costs by carpooling with friends or officemates who live close to you, and ask them to contribute to parking and gas.
Remember that the best things in life are for free
We Pinoys are a social bunch – we love going out with friends and family. But making a habit to go to the mall encourages a lot of unnecessary spending on food, snacks, and other little things that add up. Great memories can be shared with our loved ones without spending so much. Try cooking a meal at home instead of having lunch at a restaurant. If you want a change of scenery, go for a drive to the beach, park, or any place you can spend time outdoors. You’ll find that the experiences you’ve had with your family are more meaningful than the food you ate or the things you bought.
Know a savings tip we missed? Share your advice with us in the comment section below.
This post was originally posted in Moneymax.ph
Kyle Kam is a Digital Marketing Specialist of MoneyMax.ph, a financial comparison website aiming to help Filipinos save money through diligent comparisons of financial products.