Kicking your bad money habits
When it comes to money, habits and behavior are the culprits.
Nov 17, 2011 12:00 pm
The way you handle and spend money reflects a lot about your priorities and values. More than being frugal, being a conscious spender will give you more control about how money factors into your life as well as give you the more satisfaction when you do decide to spend on things you care about.
At The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf’s brunch series- Small Talks for Big Changes, Randell Tiongson, financial consultant and director of Registered Financial Planners of the Philippines, talked about typical Filipino habits on money and how to improve saving habits.
“If you ask a lot of people right now, their level of savings in not that ideal,” shares Randell. “There’s a study that in the Philippines, we only save about 18-20 percent of our income. When you compare that figure to other countries like China, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, their savings are at about 30 percent. Knowing that ours does not even reach 20 percent makes us realize that we are going to have a problem in the future.”
He adds, “There’s a magic number for saving and spending- if you save about 30 percent of your income, you’re going to be financially stable. In fact, you could be rich.” He also recommends having an emergency fund amounting to three to six months of your monthly expenses in near cash like special deposit accounts. Don’t keep an emergency fund worth more than six months of expenses because you will lose out on low interest rates since it will be kept in near cash.
Entreprenuer.com.ph asked Randell what are the common money pitfalls that Filipinos succumb to? He cited two factors: consumer debt and not saving. He says Filipinos tend to borrow money as an easy way out without thinking about how they will be able to pay the debt and because of this they are not able to save any money.
He explains, “You cannot track your saving if your do not track your spending.” Habits and behavior are the problem he says adding that forced savings is also good habit to foster. Once you build up your savings, you can learn to diversify your investments and let it grow over time.
The next installment of The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf's brunch series will be held at Shangri-la Mall on November 19 with Preview Magazine's Associate Editor, Eunice Lucero leading a fashion talk and a make-over session. To RSVP, email firstname.lastname@example.org.