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  • Top 7 Smart Money Saving Tips

    Let's face it. Being frazzled out over money and savings can be stressful. But taking charge of your spending ways and saving even just a few wads of Gandhi's can certainly assuage some of the worry. When you look for ways to save money every month, more often than not, they result in saving here and there while losing out on big. This is not to say that saving small amount is insignificant, but the smart thing to do is to see ways to save huge. You will save thousands of rupees and get much ahead with your savings and investment. Whether you wish to be a crorepati (so badly) or simply wish to cease splurging your salary before it is even credited, there are some remarkably easy ways to keep aside some money.

    From some smart banking and budgeting tips, you have several ways here to spend less and save more.

    i. Choose a bank that gives back and gives back plenty

    India has no dearth of banks and finance firms, public or private sector ones. Look for one that makes the most sense for you. How are you planning to save? Are you going to open a savings account, going for term insurance plans or mutual fund investment or start a fixed deposit? Almost all banks offer these. But the rates could vary for each product slightly or drastically. For instance if one bank gives more returns and offers on savings account, the other might offer a better rate for home loans. Also look for benefits such as nominal or zero ATM or overdraft charges. Don’t hesitate to contact the bank and ask specifically about all these.

    ii. Ideal distribution of your salary

    Ask the human resources department at the organization you work at to divide each of salary amount between your checking and savings accounts. If you keep a definite percentage to routinely deposit into your savings so you are not likely to touch that while out shopping or pubbing. Another perk here is that interest rates are normally more for savings accounts than they are for others.

    iii. Set targets with a budget-tracking app

    Set a goals for your monthly income. The first thing to do would be clearing away all the dues and bills. The credit card bill is usually the most anxiety-inducing one. Once that is done, coming up with a doable and realistic plan for the monthly expenses and savings will be a tad hassle-free. Of course sticking to the plan is totally on you. There are plenty of spend-tracking apps like Mint and Budget to assist you with this.

    iv. Check on your account from time to time

    Sometimes certain receipts and not-all-there-looking charges can give you the shock of your life and hence it is important to keep checking your account every now and then. We may be living in an age of electronic banking, but that doesn’t mean the system is error-free or flawless. Keep all your account sips and bills at least for a week. This way you can keep track as well as cut back on unnecessary spending (like more dine outs than healthy).

    v. Sparing use of ATMs transactions

    ATM transactions being easy doesn’t mean that you should go there to withdraw every time you need cash. The ideal thing to do is to take out a set amount every week and limit your spending within that. This way, you won't be compelled to hit up ATMs of other banks and get smashed by ATM charges. To be systematized, you can divide money into envelopes and mark bills, food and groceries, leisure etc. Paying with cash rather than plastic at stores will keep you more grounded.

    vi. Plan cash withdrawals

    If you end up using ATMs more often, plan each visit sensibly to evade usage fees. The first few times, you are allowed free transactions, after which it will be charged INR 20 per transaction and INR 10 per enquiry. Stick to your own bank’s ATM as much as you can. When it is time to take out cash, see if you can swipe your card.

    vii. Settle outstanding credit card dues

    Disbursing your credit cards bills and even keeping one (for emergency) rather than a host of them is one way to save lots. Most credit cards have yearly fees and higher interest rates. So unless you are using one regularly, it is just a money-sucking piece of plastic.

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