While growing up my grandmother (God bless her departed soul) bought me my first mini ‘bank’ – clay Money Pot. I was probably in Primary 2 or so then. I was made to put all the money that was given to me by visitors or uncles and aunties we visited in that pot. By the time I got to JSS 2, I was made to open a bank account with the old Afribank then and I have since maintained that account till date. I used to go to the bank with my parents to put my little money in the savings account. It was a fascinating experience for me as a kid.
I have given this background just so you can understand that savings is one habit that you have to cultivate and nurture. The financial ‘education’ given to me then has really helped me in understanding how money and saving work. So how do you develop the habit of saving?
1. Set a Goal – what do you want?
– Do want to buy that game?
– Do you want to buy a bicycle
– Do you need a particular thing?
– Or you just want to be financially independent?
A goal would help you in saving towards your desired target.
2. Set a deadline – put a timeline to when you want to buy or own whatever your target is. Write both the goal and the deadline somewhere you can always see it such that it reminds you of the task ahead.
3. Open A Savings Account – visit a bank near you and open a student or target savings account. Interestingly all the banks now have such accounts. Don’t be tempted to withdrawal your savings.
4. Pay Yourself First – ensure that the first bill you pay whenever you get income before you start spending is the one that goes into your saving account.
5. Earn More Save More – the more you earn the more you should save, so set a fixed percentage of your income to be saved. This way when your income increases the portion you save will also increase.
6. Always Save Left Over – don’t spend what is left after buying whatever you want to buy. Save the remnant however small – do not spend just for the sake of spending. Ensure there is a genuine need for what you’re buying, ALWAYS.
7. Keep Friends of Like Minds – if you want to build the habit of saving money, surround yourself with people who save money.
There is a quote I found very interesting that has really help me a lot: If I don’t save now, I will never have money. No matter how much I earn. Write this down somewhere you can ALWAYS see it and constantly read it to yourself every day.