Whenever the parents go to the shop to purchase monthly provisions or to a retail textile show room ,to hotels for occasional eating out etc it is good to take the child also into the process of purchase.Encourage the child to total the bills before or immediately before leaving the shop.If any short totaling is found pay the difference amount to the shop owner through the child.This will instill honesty in the child at a very young age.Also if any excess amount is billed and the child finds it out encourage the child to point out the mistake and collect back the excess so charged.Once in home check if all the items as per bill are packed in to your box.Take the help of the child to arrange the items as per the bill and also telling the child about the price of atleast bigger items so that the child is aware of the value of money and your toil for the family.Educate the child to compare prices of the things he/she wants and let the child volunteer to go for an item which the family can afford.If the child still insists to go for a really costlier one make it clear that you are buying it as a onetime concession and the child may not get the same ever time..The children are as worthy as your money and handle both accordingly for a happy money life to you and later to your child.
All of us who use the internet and read blogs browse website etc..have the basic idea of what a bank is though some of us may be students,children and some housewives may not be that familiar with the banking operations.But it can be safely assumed that majority of the households in semi urba,urban and metro cities will surely have at least one bank account and may be other accounts like housing loan,car loan,credit cards etc…Each visit to a bank branch presents with many opportunities to enrich our knowledge, human relations and customer feedbacks etc..Each family should make use of these bank accounts to get maximum benefit out of it. Many a times we see heated arguments between the bank staff and customers which leaves a bad taste.Both sides should understand that they are dealing with two of the most valuable assets on earth…MAN and his MONEY(or women and her money if you like). Many of the customers do engage the services of the less educated,financially weaker people for help in their daily household of business work..may be a domestic help ,a gardener or a driver…
Those of us who employ such people should also introduce them to basic banking by helping them to open a bank account explaining them the benefits of having a bank account.This is not only a help to the individual but an indirect service to that Nation too.
Last week we saw the need for the housewife and children taking the initiative and sit with the other parent to discuss family finance.There is another very important fact which the wife mostly ignores in the name of non interference..I.e the habits of the husband which are capable of burning a hole in the pocket and in the heart as well.Yes I mean the habits of smoking and drinking. In many families the women do not attach much importance to these two vital habits and on the other hand taken it as a given thing for a male.Some others escape by blaming it on the family habits and through the easy escape route. ..that the man will never listen..All these are only half truths and escapism.
No doubt the spouse should respect the individual freedom and should never go for micro management.But there can be no excuse in matters affecting the common interest and peace of the family.More than mutual respect the husband and wife should respect their marriage which has lot of love,respect,happiness etc attached to it.
The health hazard that these habits will pose over a period of time is immense and quite destabilizing.Also nobody can save the affected person at a later stage.
Financially too the loss is very significant.A packet of 20 cigarettes costs anywhere between Rs 110 to 130 and if a person smokes 10 packets in a month and resorts to alcohol even twice a month the family will surely suffer a minimum loss of Rs2500 in a month which cumulatively over a period could be devastating..
Families big or small …income is more or less…the first priority is to seal the holes in the pot failing which no water will in and we will have only an empty pot soon.
As we discussed in the last post the housewife presents a typical example of insufficient financial literacy and it will be a service to the society if some sincere attempt is made in this direction.The reason that most of the housewives keep away from family finance are many. The primary reasons are
1.the male earning partner dominating and snubbing any interest shown by the wife.
2.The wife herself is not interested much and places lot of faith in her partner’s capabilities to manage the financial affairs of the family.
3.both of them are not very educated and the survival itself is very difficult with limited income.
Though the above reasons may appear to be present in many families it does not mean that they can allow things to continue the same way forever.Whatever be the household income and whatever be the education of the members it is very important that both the husband and wife along with the grown up child sit and discuss the family finances regularly without fail. on the salary date the family should sit together and the breadwinner should tell the family what his income is…what are his statutory deductions like provident fund etc and show the wife the balance amount credited in the bank account or hands over as cash to her.This will make the child understand the importance of money, as also a feel of the family conditions.Thereafter the family monthly loan liabilities,recurring expenses etc should be clearly dealt with and a permissible amount is set aside as liquid savings to be held in a bank account for meeting the contingencies.
More about banking and investment next….
As I mentioned in a couple of my earlier posts the topic of money and investments is very special in that it is the most important aspect in one’s life but given the least attention.Earn of course we do.but earn in a honest way,know the rules,be aware of the options and above all be satisfied at some point in time that we have travelled a straight path and there is nothing to hide in our life.There are lot of high end courses,advisors,books,online materials etc most of which no doubt are good and useful but available only to the upper band in the society due to the high cost involved. I honestly believe there is a huge captive group available to know and benefit from all those avenues but unable to do so due to various reasons.For example the teenage students in schools …they are continuously bombarded with inputs about the studies…marks..placements and ofourse a overseas job.i If we take some time out and observe some such youngsters who as a result of all those conditioned inputs and despite handsome salaries are yet to understand the knotty..gritty of money life.so also an average housewife who mostly does not take any active part in the financial decisions in the family.Both these segments deserve a very urgent and holistic administration of honest inputs about money and how we earn it.
I dedicate all my blog posts in www.moneyandmany to all such people with a sincere appeal: start talking about money,,, start thinking about money.. it is not a SIN to do so for money is like water with no color or tastes.It does what the owner intends to do with it…
LET US MEET AGAIN.. A VERY HAPPY DIWALI
Normally when we are in a bank we find some people coming in and ensuring with the people in the front desks about deposit schemes. More sophisticated customers enter the branch managers’ cabin and discuss with him about the savings options. It is also common practice that those of us who want to deposit some surplus cash go to different banks and find out the rate of interest offered by them. This is our first idea about savings.In India banks are the first and safest priority for the common an to keep their hard earned money.The public sector banks are more preferred by the middle and lower middle class customers though the banks in private sector also are equally good.But the first question put up by the customer is : Is this bank a Govt.owned bank or otherwise.This tendency prevails even today though to a lesser extent. This is mainly because of two reasons. The man on the street believes anything connected with Government is secured enough.. be it savings or employment or investment. The second and more important is the lack of awareness about the alternative avenues available to save or invest.At the most the next popular investment options that will crop up is either Gold or real estate.
let us therefore move ahead starting from the most common and popular options to the other available options one at a time.
It is quite some time since I made my last post here and I am happy to be back with you all. I have come to the USA on a personal visit and enjoying the pleasant weather here. In my last blogpost I talked about focusing on not only the money expenses but also on our thoughts and actions so that we focus enough on money matters and other aspects in life and grow happily.This said I honestly believe that I have recorded all that I felt necessary to have a clear idea about money and the wrong notions surrounding money. Now the next most important thing about our family finances is planning..financial planning.But before we embark on that beautiful exercise of planning we should start SAVING. This very important habit called savings should start as soon as we start earning to have a tension free life post our retirement. On the other hand we should as a society which includes parents,teachers,elders and all should do the bit to inculcate the habit of savings to our children from the young age. We teach so many things to children in schools except about money.All of us should put our heads down and seriously think about this and help our children to get at least a structured basic idea about money,savings,investment etc..the sooner the better.
Let us move in to begin financial planning from my next post.
Some time back I wrote about accounting and its importance. Accounting in simple terms means observing.When you write down accounts for your family finance you become aware and start observing what happens to the money you earn. This accounting or observation can and should be applied not only to your money matters but also to your thoughts, words, and deeds as well. When we sit down and decide what is our goal in life it is also our duty to regulate our thoughts to achieving that goal.We normally get so many thoughts in a day and without our knowing we are dragged into those thoughts.All unwanted thoughts which are not in sync with our goal should be nipped in the bud and should not be nurtured.So also the words we speak and the actions we perform.The unified focus of our thoughts ,words, and action only can take us further towards our reaching the goal. So I reiterate that we should not only exercise control over our finances but also on our thoughts and actions to be truly successful in our financial life.
When we talk about earning money the growing tendency is to earn as much as possible and as quickly as possible. Thos of us who embark on such greedy ventures invariably fail miserably and end up on the losing side. The reasons are not far to seek. When we plan sincerely as we have discussed early on and decide how much money we need and when we need then our journey towards the goal is steady and safe.Even if we fail here and there we reach the goal with determination and smart work. But when we tend to deviate and want to become rich in a very impracticable time span then we tend to look out for advice from the so called self- proclaimed experts. We should always remember that what others dish out is their story of success or failure under may be a different set of conditions.In our anxiety to run a faster race, we follow these paid advise very religiously and incur huge losses. Financial decisions should be based on our conditions, capacities and needbased.
I have been talking to you about money, savings , and planning in my previous posts. Now earning is a very important part and the earlier it starts in our life the smoother, easier will our life sail through as we progress. Now earning money is not that difficult as it is imagined by many of us.With the services sector growing much faster than the labor intensive areas like agriculture , textiles and other industries there are plenty of opportunities to make money even at an early stage. But there is a stumbling block which prevents us from venturing into any activity which can bring money into our life. Every one irrespective of our education, capability want white collar 10-5 jobs and feel inferior if we have to do something less than that though many a time those ordinary small time ventures fetch you much more money than your salary and over a period of time they become crorepatis whereas you the salary earner struggle to become even a millionaire.In the area where I live there are about a dozen housing projects coming up within a radius of 2 kilometers. There are at least a dozen workers in each of these building sites. I notice a boy supplies tea both in the morning and evening to all these sites.gradually he has expanded his supply to include morning breakfast and evening snacks.All these are supplied at a very competitive price which the workforce can afford.No wonder that this boy must be making a decent profit to take care of his livelihood. The most important point is that the seed of entrepreneurship has been sown in him and who knows he may grow into a very large hotelier in the future providing employment to much more. Many of us have domestic help in our houses.These poor ladies come to work may be there is no menfolk to take care of them or those available while away their time. We can take the initiative to call these people , tell them about what is happening in the outside world and ignite a spark which will catch up and make them useful earning members.If need be we can also contribute a small starting capital which we can get back in small installments once they catch up.LET US BE THE CATALYST in lighting a small lamp in the society.