Diwali, or the most marketed Indian festival, ever, is a time of great offers, lots of spam mails giving you amazingly creative reasons to spend, and advertisements that always begin with either “this Diwali” or this “festive season”.
For you, however, this festival is about joy, family, friends, gifts, and most importantly, sweets. On one hand, Diwali is a lot about money; mostly the spending bit. On the other hand, the festival is also about trying to appease the goddess of wealth.
This Diwali, let’s do more about the “inviting wealth into our homes” part. Here are four promises you should make to yourself during the festival that will help you realise your financial goals by Diwali, 2017.
Promise #1: “I will save at least 20% of my earnings by next Diwali”
If you haven’t started saving, there isn’t a better time than this Diwali. Saving is the cornerstone of any wealth creation plan. The more you save, the more you can invest and greater will be the wealth you invite into your home.
Ideally, you should save around 30%-40% of your take home earnings but 20% is a great place to start. If your take home earnings are about 6 lakhs a year then by next Diwali you should have at least 1.2 lakhs saved, and preferably invested.
Promise #2: “I will have a financial plan in place by next Diwali”
How you invest your savings is vital to becoming wealthy. The wealthy got where they are because, most of them had a plan to invest what they saved. Educate yourself about personal finance and find out which financial tools would be best, based on your financial goals and the time you have available, in terms of your investment horizon.
You should create, at the very least, a basic financial plan which tells you what are your main financial goals, how much time you have to achieve them, what are your cash inflows, existing investments, and finally where you might need to invest more.
Promise #3: “I will meet at least one financial goal by next Diwali or by Diwali 20XX”
If you want something done, set a target first. A financial goal, be it setting up an emergency reserve or buying a car, requires setting targets. Unless you have a target in mind, you will only find excuses for not being able to meet your financial goals.
If your goal is to buy your first car, which might cost about 5 lakhs, then saving up that 5 lakhs is your first goal. Now you can split that goal into smaller achievable goals and plan to meet them.
Promise #4: “I will start investing for retirement”
Most of us in our late 20s or early thirties rarely think about retirement. We are mostly focused on our careers and that’s a good thing. What is not such a good thing is the fact that retirement planning needs to begin as early in your career as possible – and we don’t even think about it.
Have you thought about the time when you won’t be able to work? How will you maintain your current lifestyle then? This Diwali is a good time to start thinking about these questions if you haven’t already. Don’t just stop with thinking, start investing as well. Here is a post to get you started.