1) Set up an emergency fund
- As life is unpredictable, you may want to have an emergency fund to meet sudden events such as to pay for medical bills, house repair or vehicle breakdown. In order to meet any life crises and avoid getting into debt, your emergency fund should be a sum of 4 to 6 months of your household budget.
2) Make a shopping list
- Have a shopping list when you shop to make sure you only buy the things that you need. Watch out for impulse shopping as this can affect your budget and cause your savings to leak. Adopt a “cooling-off period” when you consider buying expensive items. You may find that you do not need the item after thinking through.
3) Pay your bills on time
- Practise the good habit of paying your bills on time or as soon as you get them. This is to avoid any oversight, penalty charges and the possibility of using the money set aside for the bill payments for other purposes.
4) Stay focus on your savings plan
- Work out the amount of money that you would like to save each month and keep to the plan. Sign up for an automatic debit arrangement with your bank to deduct your salary into your savings account. Start to save early to benefit from the effect of compound interest where you will get interest on your original savings and the interest earned.
5) Spend less than you earn
- To grow your wealth and achieve your financial goals, you need to spend less than you earn. This is true even if you have earned a lot. Regularly, check your spending and assess if you spend on things which you can do without. A “Ringgit” saved is a “Ringgit” earned.
6) Household planning is a family affair
- Involve your family in drawing up the household budget together. This will make it easier to keep to the household budget since the entire family has agreed and accepted it. Besides, your children will also learn the benefits and value of having a household budget and the difference between needs and wants.
7) Achieve your goals with financial planning
- If you want to achieve your financial dreams, you should put them down in writing together with your plans on how you intend to achieve them. Besides giving you a clearer idea of what you want, a written plan will allow you to track your progress and take any corrective steps needed for you to reach your goals.