New Year is around the corner. While you might be busy changing calendars, have you thought about having a financial calendar?
Every year has a calendar which shows the months, days and dates and you plan your affairs around that calendar. What about a financial calendar? Do you plan your finances around one?
Many of you might not have heard about a financial calendar. A financial calendar is one which is useful for your financial planning. It guides you on how to save and spend your income in different weeks of the month. If you create your calendar and follow it, you could utilize your income in the best possible way, both in terms of meeting your expenses and creating investments. Do you have any idea on making a financial calendar?
Making a financial calendar is simple. You just have to plan your finances around key financial events at the right time. Let’s see how–
Following is a quarter-wise financial calendar for your financial planning -
• April to June – In the new financial year, it is time to take stock of your investments and plan for new ones. First, invest in insurance plans. Besides creating an emergency fund you can also save tax on your next tax return. If you have loans continue servicing them. Also, figure your tentative taxable income and plan for tax-saving investments.
• July to September – Continue with your investments. If you plan on taking a vacation in the next quarter you should start saving for it. This would ensure that your vacation does not eat into your budget as you would be prepared.
• October to December – This is the quarter which is filled with festivities. Festivities entail new purchases and gifts. You should create funds for any big-ticket purchases which you intend to make in Diwali or New Year. Also, a fund is required for New Year celebrations. Towards the end of the year you should start planning for investing in tax-saving instruments.
• January to March – This is the first quarter of the New Year and the last quarter of the financial year. Tax planning takes centre-stage in this quarter. Analyse your income earned in the last nine months and also forecast the income for the quarter. Invest in Section 80C instruments to save tax on up to Rs.2 lakh of your income. Buy health insurance plans if you haven’t bought one and save tax under Section 80D. (To know more tax-saving options, click here)
Planning for each month
After you have planned for the different quarters, you can plan for each week of a month in the following way -
• First week of the month
Follow the Warren Buffet principle - Save first, spend later. As soon as you get your income, invest at least 30% of it in different avenues. Of this investment, 10% should be put aside in an emergency fund. After having saved, meet the urgent expenses. Pay off your household expenses and set aside lump sum money for daily lifestyle expenses.
• Second week of the month
Once you have met your household expenses, the next 30% of your income should be used for paying off your debts. Pay the EMIs scheduled and make sure there is no default. Your child’s education fees should also be met in this week.
• Third week of the month
Pay your bills for credit card, mobile and other utility bills. If you plan on making big-ticket purchases, schedule it for the last week and make provisions for them.
• Fourth week of the month
Assess the remaining income in your hand. If all your goals are invested in, try and prepay your loans. If you are thinking of making a big purchase in the coming months, create a fund for the purchase.
Points to keep in mind
- Big budget purchases should be planned in advance
- Tax saving should be done in regular investments throughout the year. Don’t plan your taxes only in March. When investing, choose tax-saving instruments and your tax planning would be taken care of.
- Plan for vacations and unforeseen bigger expenses too (like gifting, buying a luxury, etc.)
- Automate your savings through ECS facility
- Factor in inflation in your budgetary planning
Create a financial calendar and you would know how to utilize your income in the best possible way. Don’t ignore tax planning though. Your investments should be in tax-saving avenues which reduce your taxable income. So, use the above-mentioned knowledge and plan your calendar.
Investment in securities market / Mutual Funds are subject to market risks, read all the related documents carefully before investing.
Save first, spend later
Save first, spend later“Don’t save what is left after spending; spend what is left after saving.” The founder of Berkshire Hathaway, Warren Buffet, once said. He isn’t known as the Oracle of Omaha for nothing. He certainly knows a thing or two more than a layman would, and as is evident from the ay he lives his life, investments and financial growth over the years, it would be a good idea to learn from one of the most financially successful entrepreneurs of our time. And he certainly does know about the importance of saving. Even this article’s thrust is about the importance of saving, useful investment tips, and how you need to save before you spend. The benefits of implementing basic financial planning tips are manifold. Some of them are: Why save first, spend later?• It prevents overspending Instant gratification has become a trend in today’s age. A lot of people tend to overspend their hard-earned money on unnecessary things. As a result, you are left with little or no money to plan your investments. But you can curb this bad habit by saving first and then spending. These personal financial planning tips can allow you to invest more money and, consequently, reach your goals faster. • You can plan your goals wellYou may want to buy a house, a car, take an overseas trip and fund your child’s education. But if you can’t save enough, you’ll never be able to fulfil them. On the other hand, by saving first, you’ll have enough money to invest towards each life goal. This way, you won’t have to pick and choose your life goals. • You can create an emergency fund An emergency fund can take care of unplanned financial blows. But this fund is compromised if you spend before you save. Your expenses might blind you to the need of an emergency fund. But, such myopic vision can be corrected. If you save first, you have sufficient funds to build an emergency kitty. In fact, by the end of the year, you can build more than a month’s income by saving just 10% every month. For example, say your income is Rs 10, 000 per month and you save 10% of your income every month. This means you save Rs 1,000 every month and by the end of the year, you will have Rs 12,000 in your emergency fund. Hence, the amount will be more than your monthly salary. • You can enjoy a longer investment tenureSaving regularly for investing can also give you the benefit of compounding. For instance, if you invest Rs 1,000 every month at an interest rate of 10% for 30 years, you will receive Rs 22.6 lakh. This despite the fact that you saved Rs 3.6 lakh only. So, if you want to build your wealth, keep saving for a longer tenure. The higher the amount you save for investing, the higher the amount you’ll receive in the end. However, you can only achieve this if you save first and spend later.To sum up Warren Buffet was not born rich. He made his wealth by following the simple mantras of life, consistently and without fail, one of them being the golden rule of saving first and spending later. So, if you want to be like the Oracle himself, follow his principles. You wouldn’t need a financial advisor with these helpful family financial planning tips. What next?Once you start saving, you will have to make a financial calendar for yourself. That’s because every quarter has its own significance.DisclaimerInvestment in securities market / Mutual Funds are subject to market risks, read all the related documents carefully before investing.
Where to Invest: Short term Vs Long term investments: How do they differ
There are many investments options to choose from, however investment options can be classified under two broad heads: short-term investments and long-term investments. To decide between the two types of long term investments, you need to begin by knowing the difference between these two and the purpose they are designed to fulfil. Let’s dig deeper to find out the essential differences between short- and long-term investment options. Time frame The first and foremost difference between short term and long term investments is with regards to the timeframe that they are held for. Short-term investments are typically held for less than 12 months. Long-term investments, as the name implies, can be held for several years, typically, 10 years or more. Risk and return expectationsAll financial instruments carry some element of risk and the ability to provide returns. The difference between short-term and long-term investments can also be determined in terms of risk and return expectations. For instance, equity investments are short term investments with high returns that can be held for a short but can be subject to a high rate of fluctuation. However, if you have different expectations of your investments and are essentially investing for principal protection, a short-term investment in a debt-oriented instrument will suit your purpose just fine. Expectations can be radically different when you are investing for the long term. In such a case, you do expect higher returns along with capital appreciation and minimum risks. Investing in equity in the long-term can be considered a relatively risk averse strategy. This is because over the long-term, the impact of volatility is lessened considerably. Additionally, equity as an asset class provides the best inflation-adjusted returns over the long term. Those with a medium- to high-risk profile can thus consider equity investments to build a decent corpus for retirement. In conclusion, it may be fair to say that as an investor it is likely that you will need to invest in a mix of both long- and short-term investments to meet different financial goals. A good idea about the essential difference between the two will help you make a prudent choice. When it comes to creating an investment strategy, it is crucial to find the exact balance based on your individual circumstances. Prior to beginning an investment plan of action, whether short or long-term investing, you may want to list down a set of clear goals for investing. Even though short-term investments may appear to be a better option, because it offers better liquidity, you may want to lay aside a component of your money to invest for the long term. This is because long-term investments have better protection ability if you were to fall back on some of your money due to an unexpected fall or a bad investment. One crucial tool towards building wealth is to invest without worrying about the future or avoiding it.To help you understand your financial foals clearly and risk tolerance, you may want to consider using a financial advisor. An advisor can guide you in building an investment portfolio that focuses on your goals. You can receive the best course of action for your investments based on your financial goals as the financial advisor can help you determine the amount of growth and money you would require in a specific period. DisclaimerInvestment in securities market / Mutual Funds are subject to market risks, read all the related documents carefully before investing.
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