Go back in time to learn how to manage money!

By abithadeepak | February 22, 2010

Ever heard of your dad or grand dad take a loan for a vacation or for that matter for a festive and high spending involved occasion like a wedding? Do you recall them buying clothes because retail therapy helped their blues every other month? They always preferred quality over quantity on anything purchased be it the furniture, utensils, clothes or home accessories.

We are a transition generation trying to find a balance between retaining our traditional values and also finding a way to ape the west in terms of lifestyle changes. Well, one of the areas that seems to face marked change due to this shift is that of personal finance. Managing money has been a constant challenge for today’s young generation who have upped the antennae on the spending. They are more brand conscious than any generation before has ever been, the wardrobe has 10 or more different styles of attire for every occasion, vacations abroad are common, buying a house and a car by availing loans is also common. Educational loans and Personal loan for vacation are also on the rise.

CONSERVATIVE WITH LOANS AND EXPENDITURE

Ever heard of your dad or grand dad take a loan for a vacation or for that matter for a festive and high spending involved occasion like a wedding? Do you recall them buying clothes because retail therapy helped their blues every other month? In fact the average person belonging to the previous generation would spend money on clothes for festivals, weddings or periodically once or twice a year. They always preferred quality over quantity on anything purchased be it the furniture, utensils, clothes or home accessories.

LIVING LIFE KING SIZE!

This is not the case in today’s generation. They like living life to the full. What is the point in hoarding away money for a future which is as unpredictable as the weather! They would rather enjoy themselves to the hilt, while the party lasts! Stress is a huge factor that contribute to these drastic lifestyle changes one is a witness of now. Today’s generation work very hard and play very hard. They want to experience everything in a short span of time. They are impatient for goals to be reached and in the hurry to reach their destinations they forget to savour the simple pleasures of life that our parents and grandparents had all the time for. They lived within the incomes they received and saved as much as they could. Their income expense statements showed more cash inflows rather than outflows.

However, the younger generation argues on this aspect. We have but one life and it is too short, so we need to pack all the action in before old age sets in. What’s the point in trying to spend on entertainment, travel, food, looks and grooming with creaky joints and false teeth.

SLAVING AND SAVING LIKE ANTS!

There sure is a point there. Our dads and grand dads lived like an ant generation. Slaving away day after day in the same environment, in the same job for years together, stowing away finances in different debt instruments to accumulate and serve their purpose, when they are old. Of course some invested it in land, stocks, gold etc. as well, which was left to their discretion and knowledge in such matters. The point then is to step back and look at both the lifestyles. Take the good out of both and ensure that our life is to the fullest, with the best of both worlds.

TAKING A FEW LEAVES FROM THE BOOKS OF OUR PARENTS AND GRANDPARENTS:

1. Ensure that there is an emergency fund stowed away for a rainy day. A job loss, recession, illness etc. could prove to be a temporary setback for which you may incur additional expenses best managed with this emergency fund.

2. Keep impulse purchases to a minimum. Indulging in branded items for certain purchase choices like consumer durables and other long lasting products is fine. However, it does not mean that you should go overboard with being brand conscious all the time. In case of clothes, look out for the sales season where you avail discounts, shop for quality over quantity, which is any day better. However, if you are the kind who loves a lot of variety and like to outgrow your liking for the same kind of clothes over a period of time, indulge in less expensive clothes with a comparatively lesser shelf life, which can be discarded and refilled with other choices.

3. Don’t live life king size all the time, try and bring it down a few notches most of the time. For eg. Instead of planning a vacation that is out of the continent, you could try a vacation spot in Asia or India, which will bring the same benefits in terms of relaxation and fun and yet be less cumbersome on your purse strings.

4. When there is a boom, there is bound to be crash around the corner. So hold your horses and don’t overindulge in luxuries, tomorrow may not work out as planned, nevertheless it is wise to be prepared for it, even if it is bound to take you by surprise. A little foresight could save you from a load of trouble.

5. Take care to have a mixed portfolio with investments in debts and equities apart from an emergency fund and other savings.

6.Debt counsellors advise 60% of your income should be set aside for savings and investments and 40% should be able to cover your living expenses as well as any debt expenses you might have incurred.

7. Use your credit card judiciously or don’t use it at all and keep a tab of your debts to ensure they are safely manageable. In fact do not take a loan unless it fits it well with the rest of your financial goals and you can safely repay it without any stress to your budget.

By all means enjoy life, but in moderation. Balance is the key element to have the best of both worlds. A little bit of this and a little bit of that make for a wholesome, balanced life sprinkled with variety.

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About Abitha Deepak

Abitha was formerly part of the Content team at BankBazaar.com. She has a Master’s degree in Mass Communication and has 14 years of experience in Journalism and Creative Writing. Armed with strong writing and conceptualisation skills, Abitha has written on Loans, Credit Cards and Money Management.

18 thoughts on “Go back in time to learn how to manage money!

  1. t.r. dutta

    Thanks for such a thought provoking & timely article.

    Reply
    1. Santosh Rege

      Truly timely article. The youngsters ,and working individuals must read this. Thought provoking

      Reply
  2. anil

    Really we should follow our philosophy of dad & grand dad , in turn our life will be simple & peaceful-really wonderful article to follow for all of us in this global recession time , even in India , we are fortunate that we have learnt from mistakes of west>> now our younger generation think to save , save & save…

    Reply
  3. Alim

    Fantastic article , no matter how times changes , things boom and then crash , but a philosophy like this is always necessary . we need this to pass this guidance to our next generations .

    Reply
  4. Sumit

    We need to learn to be content with life and not to run madly after the materials of the world…

    Reply
  5. khajan

    this is a superb article which truely reflects the lives of this transition generation which is perfectly imbalanced towards the unnecessary worldy things. this article will be kept in mind.

    Reply
  6. kishor pokhareyal

    really good lession for new generation.It touches the ground honesty of every one.

    Reply
  7. khan

    Youngsters need to take a leaf out of this article and think in this direction …."Better late than never" …Abhi bhi waqt hai sudhar jao !

    Reply
  8. thresiamma says:Sep

    To be published in Newspapers also so that more youngsters can be enlightened!!!

    Reply
  9. Hemendra

    Our parents knew well – " mind your paise, it will take care of your rupee".

    When there is no emergency, my dad will walk a KM , avoid Bus, save 10 to 15 paise and that kept him fit for 90 years, no expenses on health and saved to make his child study engineering.

    Simple but easy way to leave peaceful life with limited resouces kept our old people happy.

    Reply
  10. Bhuvana

    I agree wholesomely, while our parents never really enjoyed life, more worrying about tommorow, they could not enjoy the fruits of all the hard work due to health and other issues at retirement. Saving while spending judiciously is the key. Enjoy today, while your savings take care of tommorow.

    Reply
  11. Ennaye

    It is a very good article.

    Gandhiji believed and preached 'SIMPLE LIVING AND HIGH THINKING'.

    Alas today's gennext is deficient in both. And today's parents do not have the courage to teach their kids the advantages of both simple living and high thinking.

    Reply
  12. Hari

    Really a great advice. Entertainments are increasing rather than the income. Banks are taking advantages from today's circumstances.

    Reply
  13. Aman

    This article is indeed Need of the hour. Savings, Investments are a MUST in todays life more so when mixed economy has transitioned to a private economy . Proud to be a part of growth story -INDIA, but neverthless shouldn't forget essence of saving for tommorrow. I-live-to-enjoy-Weekend culture should self-restrained by ALL- I feel this is very important to reduce on piling up stress for oneself in long run.

    Reply
  14. avdhesh garg

    its a perfect article to open the eyes of younger generation and they have to take it seriously !

    Reply
  15. anand omprakash

    it made an interesting reading.such clinical observations and lessons given will certainly help us in managing our finances

    Reply

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