Let’s rewind to our parent’s or grandparent’s generation (depending on how grumpy you felt on reading this title). Simple meal twice a day, clothes bought mostly once a year, simple modes of transport, and hence a considerable build-up of prime property and gold. Cut back to today, the age of Amazon Prime and Zomato Gold. Where Apps and Brands are bargaining tough throughout for your few second’s attention. And there constant implicit pressure from Social Media geckos to suit up and savour and travel and move. But all that definitely takes a toil on your pockets, why won’t it? We could hardly get past 20th forget about saving. How are you supposed to plan what happens 40 years from now when you can’t control your urge to buy that 7th pair of shoes this year?
First and foremost, let’s admit it outrightly, you ain’t capable of saving after spending for an entire month. The temptations are just too hungry to be silenced. So get those few thousands round and out the second your salary gets credited. That’s the only way you are going to beat the heat and cut to the chase. In order to roost the chicken, you must keep the eggs safe.
Now that we got the hardest part out of the way, let me tell you it ain’t so easy yet. The money you keep aside will now be in a constant race with inflation rate. Remember the times your Nani used to say they bought so many things with just one rupee? Well, that one rupee didn’t dampen, inflation happened! Your thousand rupees would be worth much less thirty years from now. The standard annual rate of inflation is 3% but who knows it can be much more than that. Especially in a rapidly developing economy like India.
Fixed Deposits are considered to be the safest route for that. You might just be able to nudge ahead and do well with peaceful sleep during nights. You will have to just worry about renewing them once the term gets over, choosing auto-renewal would only require you to remember that they exist somewhere. But here safety precedes risks and hence even benefits.
Gold as a jewellery or wedding gift or even just a simple investment predates even many ancient traditions. It lasts longer than many generations. But ensurity of return doesn’t often form the most promising of case. And never accept an insurance as an act of investment as well, it’s highly appealing as backbone support and backup case, but shouldn’t be anything more than that.
Real Estate, the house of dreams is more of an emotional issue than a financial case, but please keep it only limited to that. The markets are too volatile to feel attached, plus the cheeky builders and brokers can push you down any drain and rental outcomes might be too small a cog for all the rain.
So what do you do after all that tiny bit of money you saved? Well, if you can afford a small leap to reap huge returns, stock markets might be your option. But Alas! Do you know anything about them? Have you studied even a little bit or know anything more than the fact that Mukesh Ambani is the richest man and Reliance is his company’s name? Sit back and Relax, experts can take care of that! Mutual Funds is the name of the game.
You can sink in and dive in two ways. Either keep invest it all away together in a Lump Sum or go slowly every month with a SIP. In any way, the interest will keep on adding depending on the market and the segment you invested in, but it will mostly be positive and easily beat inflation over the long haul. It will surely give a handsome return for your grandkids or the world tour you wanted to go on after retirement, stay assured about that.
Lastly, probably the most riskiest but also the most fruitful of options, open up your own business! Maybe a side story you may build up upon later on or in a full-fledged gear that someone near and dear to you can take care. Open that coaching class, cafe, publishing house, app, or grocery store, you always knew you could leverage upon. It may take hours of extra work every day and years to steadily built ahead, but in the end, might well be worth every dime of progress.
In today’s consumerist society, it’s more than easy to be a hedonist. There’s nothing special about being careless. It takes courage and character to care. Take care of your hard-earned, fully deserved, and topmost priority, aka money. And in a sweet dreamland after 60, when your kids would demand appointments to meet and body won’t be too much sporty, the money you cared enough to save at 20 will take care of you as well. Let it grow and it will let you flourish as well.