Sunday, December 30, 2007

Saving Money High on New Year's Resolution List in 2008

LONDON (Reuters) - Saving money tops the list of 2008 resolutions for young people, taking priority over more common vows like dieting and exercising, research shows.

Some 54 percent of 18 to 24-year-olds say they want to put more money away for a rainy day next year while 44 percent resolve to exercise more and 31 percent to go on a diet, according to a poll by ICICI Bank.

It said this showed that the credit crunch was making people think about their financial future and rein in their spending.

Overall, one third of 2,100 adults surveyed said they would resolve to make savings high on their agenda for 2008.

That was beaten only by the intention to exercise and diet (44 percent and 38 percent respectively).

Some 18 percent said they would make being "green" a New Year's resolution, 8 percent plan to give up smoking and 2 percent want to give up alcohol.


With this startling statistic, this only shows that more and more people are realizing the value of savings.

Saving for your future is every persons dream. But for it to become a reality. We must carry the right philosophy in money "It's not how much money you make but how much money you save."

We have to be consistent in disciplining and controlling our spending habits.

Here are some practical ways on how we can save for 2008:
1. Quit smoking.
If you spend P30 pesos a day for smoking, that will be an equivalent of P900 a month and a total of P10,800 a year.

2. Quit buying coffee from expensive coffee shops.
One cup of coffee will cost you P80 a day, that will be an equivalent of P1,600 for 20 days and a total of P19,200 per year.

3. Control your mobile phone bill expenses.
If you can save at least P500 per month that will be a total savings of P6,000 per year.

4. Quit using your credit cards.
Statistics shows that you increase your spending by 30% if you use your credit cards for purchases. As much as possible use cash. If you need to use your credit card for convenience. Make sure you pay the following week to avoid penalty charges.

5. Eat at home.
Eat out less often. If you and your spouse will spend at least P500 for every meal for just even once a week. That will be a total of P2,000 a month and a grand total of P24,000 a year.

From this 5 tips alone you can save around P50,000 a year.
There are many more things you can cut down in order for you
to start a new life this 2008.
So start the year right and you will experience a fruitful and a
debt free year of 2008.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Will Your Parents Have Enough When They Retire?

To all parents,

You sacrificed a lot to raise your family, sent your children to school, and provided to the best of, and at times even beyond, your abilities. But once your children graduate from college, I think it’s time for them to start earning and become responsible individuals. That’s the ultimate goal of every parent ⎯ to train and teach their children to become independent adults.

Sad to say, I have seen young adults in their 30s still living with their parents and dependent for allowances. Some even have started their own families but still living with their parents under one roof. This will put so much strain in the financial resources on any family. Everyone is just dependent on one breadwinner.

Parents, it is time for you to let go. You have done your part. Now is the time for you to think about yourselves. Once you reach your golden year of retirement, the only people who will be next to you will definitely be your spouse. Regardless of your age, sex, or marital status, you need to know a few things about your and/or your spouse’s retirement plan. When setting your retirement goals, you shouldnot leave anything to chance. Getting the answers to these questions can eliminate future surprises.

These are the questions we need to ask ourselves before we retire.
1. How much money do you have in your savings before you retire?
2. Do you have a pension retirement plan already in place?
3. What will be your expenses when you retire? List everything down.
4. Just in case you lose your capacity to earn, will you still be able to pay for all your bills even if you don’t have to work for another day in your life?
5. What are your passive sources of income once you retire? Will this be enough to cover for all your expenses?

If we don’t handle our finances well while we’re still young, we will definitely experience hard times once we retire.

In life, “if you fail to plan, you plan to fail.”

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Money Behind 80% of Separations

Fifty percent of all marriages fail, and financial problems are the leading cause of separation by a factor of 4:1 or 80% of all causes. Isn’t that alarming? Yet, it is true that the number one cause of marital problems are arguments on money. This is one sad fact about money, but this is the reality.

I don’t know if you have experienced this, but financial problems usually do not even emanate from either you or your spouse. It can be because of a third party. Do you get what I mean by third party? Well, as Filipinos, we are clannish. There is always that probability that one side of the family, say your immediate relatives, needs money.

I would like to share with you some practical tips on what my wife and I have agreed on how to avoid conflicts with regards to money.

Tip No. 1: Open Only a Joint Account

Never keep a separate or secret account from your spouse. Friends and relatives will usually come to the wife or the bride-to-be and offer unsolicited advice, such as “If I were you, I will open another bank account. You do not know what will happen in the future. You know what I mean, just in case.” If you open another account and listen to the advice, unconsciously you have opened the idea of a possibility that your husband will cheat on you someday. You have already allowed the negative idea that your husband will not remain faithful in your marriage. The foundation of all marriages is trust. Trust must be preserved right from the first day of marriage.

Tip No. 2: Keep Your Personal Income Private

Never allow any of your immediate relatives to know how much money you are making in a month and how much money you have in the bank. Why? Let’s say your brother knows that you have saved P100,000 in the bank. The money is intended for the tuition of your children. All of a sudden he needs P30,000 for personal reasons. Who do you think your brother will call for help? Ghostbusters! I don’t think so. The first person he would think of and call will be you. Even if you explain that the money is for the tuition of your kids, he may still feel sad that you weren’t there for him when he needed you most.
What if your immediate relatives ask how much you are making in a month? My wife and I have agreed on a standard answer, “Just enough!” If they insist on asking how much specifically, we just tell them that we are making just enough to meet our needs.
These issues, if left unresolved, will cause strain as well as a tense environment in the relationship as husband and wife. So discuss, disclose, and agree as a couple on what are the limits you want to set in terms of extending help and support to your immediate family. This will help avoid miscommunications, disagreements, and stress in your relationship. In reality, money will be a constant concern in our lives.