As an educated and independent woman, being a rockstar at work is just half the battle won. The other half is in being smart and prudent about your hard-earned money. However, we’re not saying that you need to give up everything you love and save up for the future.
No. There’s a way to have your (sugar-free) cake and eat it too!
Small but sensible steps can help you grow your money, achieve your financial goals, and retire like a queen, while still indulging in the occasional shopping spree or international holiday or whatever else you may fancy.
Here are some tips that can help you accomplish all this and more:
- Allocate a budget
Based on your monthly/annual income, draw up a personalized budget based on your goals and the time frames within which you want to achieve them. A good way to start is by following the 50-30-20 rule. On receiving your paycheck every month, allocate 50% to sustenance expenses, 30% to savings and investments, and the final 20% to living life queen-size.
- Take charge of fixed expenses
As the term suggests, your fixed expenses aren’t likely to change anytime soon. These include rent/EMI, insurance, etc. Prioritize expenses based on their importance and set a limit in stone. Fixed expenses will eat into the bulk of the funds you allocate for expenses. Prepaying a loan or moving to a relatively cheaper house can help you limit your fixed expenses.
- Restrict variable expenses
This is where you really need to rein it in. From the unavoidable travel, phone, and internet services to an impulse shopping spree or a night out with the girls, failing to track variable expenses could lead you into a financial abyss. You don’t have to miss out on all the fun, but if you have long-term goals such as buying a house or starting your own business, you must consider being more judicious with your money.
- Put technology to use
You name it and there’s probably an app for it – budgeting apps that keep you on point, apps that help you dial down on debt, apps that bring all your investments in place, even apps that invest the spare change left over from your shopping expeditions.
- Optimise investments
Jut saving money isn’t enough. You need to make smart investment choices as well. Your investment portfolio must not only beat inflation but also generate enough wealth to allow you to be financially free as early as possible.
With HDFC Bank’s comprehensive banking and investment ‘Savings Max’ account, you can choose the best investment option based on your risk profile. With just a click of a button, you can create a Systematic Investment Plan (SIP).
With HDFC Bank ‘Money Maximizer Facility’, you can convert your surplus money into a Fixed Deposit, where you can get the best of a Savings Account liquidity and the benefit of a higher interest rate, through the sweep out feature. In the event your Savings Account runs low on funds, the shortfall can be address through the sweep-in of funds from Fixed Deposits booked through sweep-out. You also get free ATM transactions, cashback, exclusive loan offers, and insurance benefits worth in excess of a crore!
In today’s age, money is power, independence, and freedom. You just need the right financial partner to help you achieve it.
- Plan your tax outgo
Let’s be honest. No one likes paying taxes, but rather than leaving everything to the chartered accountant, it is wise to be more proactive and smart while paying your dues to the taxman.
Ensure that you maximise benefits from all investment and tax-saving options available to you. You can save up to Rs 1.5 lakh with these tax-saving options. From Public Provident Fund to Equity Linked Savings Scheme, there’s a product for everyone.
If you are already a home owner, you can claim additional deductions.
If you are an entrepreneur, remember to save all your meal, travel, and accommodation bills, which you can claim as expenses and reduce your tax liability.
- Retire like a queen!
Traditionally, women have had shorter working tenures compared to men, with longer life expectancies. Add to that the pay gap bias – and you have a triple whammy!
First of all, ensure that you have a health insurance policy in place so you don’t end up financially crippled in case of a health emergency.
Then do a back-calculation on how much money you would need after retirement, after accounting for inflation and taxes. Your investments and tax planning options should focus on achieving these figures.
At work, don’t hesitate to fight against the pay gap. Make career decisions that put you first.
Finally, age is just a number. You can even plan for a post-retirement career if you love working, and enjoy the increased financial independence it affords you in your golden years.
With HDFC Bank Investment Products, you can enjoy all the financial independence and be your own boss.
So take charge of your financial wellbeing and stay on top of every situation. After all, you are your own knight in shining armour!