The second month of the year is almost coming to an end. How much have you put aside for the rainy days to come? The idea is to break the monotony of routinely saving. You do realize that as years go by, the economy of Kenya keeps growing and the changes translate into the money in your pocket. That it will be an eternity before your employer thinks of increasing your salary after working your arse off, but the cost of living will not bow down to your peanuts.
For this very reason, you need to restructure your savings plan such that with the little that you have, you are putting away as much as possible so that when the economic waves roar, you will be home and dry, with something to keep you going before you before a bigger and better opportunity comes your way.
Here are clever ways to do it.
1. Have a calendar
Against the days of the month, include the amounts that you should save each day. These amounts should be varying on the higher side but with a bare minimum for those days that are extremely dry. For instance, Ksh 20 should be the least amount. So on Monday, you save Ksh 20, Tuesday save Ksh 40, Thursday save 60 and so on. At the end of the week, you will have saved twice as much than if you stuck to a fixed amount.
Many people save in their heads, but having something tangible that you can keep referring to, helps you keep track. Remember to tick off those days that you have achieved your target.
2. Cut down on unnecessary spending
It’s okay to live like a king once your salary has checked into your account. But let it not be on impulse buying. Although the temptation will always be there, you can defeat this demon by keeping your wallet on a budget. For instance leaving the house with Ksh 500, for fare, lunch and unforeseen events during the day, is less tempting as compared to stashing your wallet with Ksh 2000 as your mind will be wired to thinking that you should blow it away on some fancy clothes on the streets.
3. Stick to your budget
Come rain come sunshine, you must save. At no point should your expenditure knock off the amount you have set aside for savings. A budget helps you allocate your minimal resources to the necessary items that will help in your livelihood. if you are earning, Ksh 20000, you can set aside Ksh 5000 as savings. This money should not be touched, as whatever remains is what you squeeze your endless needs into.
Even with the remaining Ksh 15000, you don’t have to blow it all, you can buy cheap but quality stuff so that whatever balance is left, is channeled into your savings.
These self-help groups have seen, low-income earners start small businesses, take their children to school, and buy pieces of land. Joining a Chama is the best idea if you want your savings to be put into good use. Small scale traders are many chamas, contributing at least Ksh 500 twice a week, so at the end of the day, they focus on making sure they have contributed the amount so that when their turn to receive comes, the accumulated amount is very much worthwhile.
5. Parttime jobs
Thousands of Nairobians are able to survive hard times because they have something else on the side. Something good enough to keep them going. Baking, tutoring, selling clothes, fruits, tailoring are initiatives that keep them busy during the weekend. Other than depending on their income for saving, these jobs contribute immensely to their upkeep.