When we were children, for most Africans, we loved superheroes and Barbie dolls. Growing up, we were taught to learn and get good grades to enter good schools. When we got to the university, we were taught to pass well and get good jobs. There is nothing wrong with any of these, do not get me wrong: the issue is that no one taught us there is more to life than just going to school and getting good paying jobs. There are lots of people who have very good paying jobs yet are not financially stable. This got me curious so I started doing my research and I came across this man every one called the Smart Money Man. To satisfy my curiosity, I went to look for him to discover how he came by his name.
These are but a few of the secrets he shared with me…
It is never too early to teach your children the importance and need for budgeting. Budgeting is an essential part of money. This will give you a clear idea of your daily and monthly expenses, which will give you the power to know what you spend most of your money on. If you have found it difficult to stick to a budget in the past, it will not be any easier now, however, you can take conscious baby steps and with time, you will become an expert.
Be financially literate. It is unfortunate that in school, we were thought English since we will need it everyday, but we are not thought about our finances. We use money every single day, consciously or unconsciously. Financial literacy is not only for the analyst and economist; it is for everyone. You need to educate yourself on your economy. This knowledge will give you an insight into when to make some purchases and when to invest your money. For example, when your economy is not doing too well, that is not the time to buy a luxury car or an expensive one. If you really have to, go for a cheaper model. Invest the rest of the money and let that grow.
Know the difference between a need and a want. Before you spend your money on anything ask yourself this, can I live without it? Of what benefit is this purchase to my life? You are going for a classy event, you can pick a couple of your classy attire and select the best one, there is no need to buy a new dress.
We need to be careful who we seek advice from on our money and who is telling us what to do with our money. Seek advice from experts; people who know how to make money and have evidence on how they made it. You cannot ask someone who has not yet given birth about the pains of giving birth. That is not to say such a person cannot give you good advice, far from it. The person could but the question is between Warren Buffett or Brain Tracy and your next door neighbour who will you trust more to give you better advice on your finances?
These are a few of the secrets he shared with me. Everyone can become a smart moneyman. It is a skill we all need to develop and be committed to every day.
Written By: Nana Akosua Agyepong Associate at max international