Follow These 9 Simple Steps And You’ll Never Have To Worry About Being Broke Again
1. Hide away a fixed portion of your income every month
Okay hear us out before you freak out! Taking 10% - 20% out of your salary every month may seem like you’re losing a lot right now but trust us when we tell you that it’s incredibly important to start saving up from a young age. Your future self will thank you when you’re able to pay off your loans and still have enough to #treatyourself without breaking a sweat.
PRO TIP: Try enforcing a rule on yourself as a sort of forced savings plan. Something like not spending any RM5 notes in your wallet and setting them aside instead for example.
2. Don't try to live alone ASAP
You may think that you're ready for the berdikari life but chances are that your savings aren't just yet. Can you really afford to pay for your rent/housing loan, electricity bill, water bill, gas bill, internet bill, ASTRO bill and weekly supply of groceries ALL BY YOURSELF? Yeah, we didn't think so. Living with your parents at home or sharing a place with some housemates may not sound like an ideal living situation but it'll go a long way in helping you save up.
PRO TIP: Split all the household bills equally between everyone instead of having each person champion a specific bill to save more and avoid arguments.
3. Choose the right neighborhood to live in
So you're finally financially stable enough to live on your own but do you know what to look out for? Don't get caught up in the excitement and end up with a place that's way more than you can afford. Do some thorough research, keep your options open and remember that certain neighborhoods cost way more than others.
PRO TIP: Write out a list of all the things you're looking for in a home and number them by importance. Carry this list around with you during your search to remind you of your priorities so that you don't get distracted by cool bonuses or interesting perks.
4. Don’t let your money just chill out and lepak
So you’ve managed to save up quite a bit and are feeling all secure in your future huh? Well, you shouldn’t be. Just letting your savings sit in a bank account is practically useless to your financial stability. It may seem scary to think about risking your savings in investments but it’ll pay off in the long run. Read more about investment ideas for young Malaysians here.
5. Take charge of your social calendar
You're probably rightfully always "too busy lah sorry" to go out with your friends. After a while, guilt + FOMO = going along with whatever they have planned when you do eventually manage to wrangle some free time in your schedule. Don't let others dictate what you do on your nights out, only you know how much you can spend. It's perfectly okay to suggest alternative plans if you think the group plans will end up costing too much.
PRO TIP: Having a potluck gathering is always a great way to spend some quality time together without burning a hole in your wallet.
6. Learn the ways of the financially savvy
Dang it, we totally regret not paying attention/sleeping though our ekonomi asas and perdagangan classes now because they actually had some pretty sound financial advice in them. But it's never too late to learn! Books, blogs and even actual financial training classes, there are endless learning opportunities out there so there's no excuse for you not to keep yourself informed on how to manage your money.
7. Set up a budget and stick to it like super glue
The most important thing to do when budgeting is to keep in mind that money for monthly expenses like rent, petrol and food VS money for miscellaneous expenses are two completely different things. Your budget is likely to fail if you just set yourself a lump sum limit of how much you can spend per month so make sure that you’re accurately listing out just how much each expense will cost.
PRO TIP: The envelope system (putting set amounts of money in separate envelopes for each expense) is a good way to keep your spending on track.
8. Equip yourself with the best possible protection
You can "choi" or "touch wood" as much as you want but that doesn't change the fact that anything could happen to you at any time. Stay protected by getting good insurance policies that provide as much coverage as possible (like these ones from Zurich for example) so that you and your loved ones won't have to worry when
Hydra emergencies strike.
9. Make the most of your skills
If there's any way you could make a little extra on the side in addition to your monthly salary then DO IT! Eh, we're talking about legal stuff ah, don't be going to extremes now. Maybe you've got a hobby you could monetize. Or you could offer your services as an Uber driver/GoGetter. Get creative and think up ideas of how you can earn as much as possible.
Once you have financial security, you’ll be able to do ANYTHING! Especially when it comes to taking care of your loved ones.
Case in point: this adorable and loving mother-daughter pair who understand that that financial security and being able to effectively care for others go hand in hand.
BTW, Zurich is giving you the chance to win some amazing prizes with their #JourneyToWellness contest!
Grand Prize: 1 x travel voucher worth RM4,000 + RM1,000 cash allowance
2nd Place: 2 x iPhone 6s 16GB + armband
3rd Place: 2 x Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge + armband
4th Place: 3 x Fitbit Charge HR Wristband
Consolation Prize: 10 x RM300 cash prize
And all you have to do to stand a chance at winning those cool stuff is play a fun little game. Head on over to their Facebook page and click on the #JourneyToWellness game tab for more details on how to play and win. Don't forget to 'like' the page first. Good luck!