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How to manage finances during COVID-19

The present pandemic has thrown up many challenges including how best to manage finances given that many have had to take salary cuts. Here’s what one can do

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Family members discussing how to manage the finances during the pandemic
Source: University of Alberta

One of the first things to remember is that even the slightest of things and simple decisions can make a difference when it comes to finances. This is because financial stability is necessary to avoid stress. It also gives security that one is set. To achieve this, here’s what one can do.

Spend less than you earn

The COVID-19 has thrown up many challenges and hence it is important to track how and where one spends the money. It is always easy to get swayed by the lure of the glamour around you and buy things on credit cards. But remember, this amount spent has to be repaid.

If the full amount is not paid, you will end up paying a high rate of interest putting a great strain on the monthly budget. The mantra to follow: Spend less than what you earn. Save!

Money management

To manage finances, it is necessary to sit down and make a list of the expenditures. This will help cut down unnecessary expenditure and ease financial burden especially if one has taken a salary cut. One can even save up for a rainy day. Scrutinise the expenditure and separate the needs and the wants. All the family members should be part of this exercise.

They should know that they too need to contribute and do their bit in these testing times. Some fixed expenses could be Mortgage repayments/rent, school/tuition fees, transport costs, taxes and utilities like gas, insurance, electricity, water, phone and or Internet. Then there are other costs like food bills, household goods, school books and stationery, medical fees to name a few. You have to consider these expenditures as they relate to the family’s lifestyle.

Managing money will help you to avoid falling into debt. If you have existing debt, debt settlement vs debt consolidation strategies to help manage finances. Consult debt management companies that have experience in dealing with such problems.

Create a solid savings plan

An important thing to keep in mind while managing finances is to have a savings plan. Always have a solid saving plan. You can tell whether you are spending more or less than what the earning is with good planning. You can review spending habits and plan accordingly. You should have a saving buffer for emergency purposes that has nothing to do with savings plans and financial goals.

While this exercise may appear to be old, the whole idea of spending money according to what you earn is archaic but this is a good way to avoid any debts and learn to live well within your means. This way, you can ensure that there are no financial strains and one can enjoy the money earned, however much it may be. It is simple.

Spend your money only on the items that you need and not on what you want. If you want to have a specific item and the earnings do not allow you to purchase it immediately, start a little saving planning on the side and buy it when you have the money.

Now, the important question is how to invest money so that you can earn a reward on the earnings on the deposit made in any investment.

Refer to our article: https://sillycorners.com/want-to-invest-in-sip-heres-what-you-should-know.

Here are other things that you need to know

There are many ways to invest your money. Though there is a risk when it comes to investing if properly invested, it can yield benefits. Below are five reasons why investing is beneficial.

High returns

When you invest, there are always risks involved. But you will almost always receive at least some return on any money deposited. However, don’t take a big risk. Take a risk that your finances will allow. You can make as much as 15% on investment if you play the right risks. This is not an exact percentage. A lot depends on the market and where the money has been invested.

Reach financial stability

Since you get a certain percentage on investment, slowly one can reach financial stability that you always wanted for the family. You can save the money that you earned from this investment for a new car or even put a down payment on a house.

Or you can save it for your child’s higher education. You can put this in your retirement savings programme and earn even more on this money at the end. This money will free you from stress and you will be assured that you will be financially independent in your old age.

Conquer inflation

Another important reason to consider investing is that you can conquer inflation. Today, the economy is not doing too well. When you invest, you get a certain percentage more than the capital that you put down. In other words, you have more money in the end. This extra money will help to cover the costs that are associated with inflation. You may even end up with a little extra. This will help cover any inflation that you may have incurred.

Save on taxes

We all have to pay taxes whether we have a business, government job, or work in the private sector. Each of us needs to know how much tax must be paid at the end of the financial year. If you invest, you can receive a large number of tax benefits and rebates from the Government, reducing how much tax you pay in the end. You will not have to use the returns that you have received from your investments to pay tax when the time comes.

Own a small part of a company

Here is the best reason why one should invest – you end up owning a small part of the company. This may be less than a percentage, yet you own it. As an investor in that company, you are entitled to any profit that the business makes. In fact, the money you invest in a company helps it to grow. You are literally helping someone’s dreams to become a reality.

This will lead to success for you as well. As the company grows your investment grows and leads to your family’s financial stability. As an investor, you can teach your children how helping others benefits everyone as well. There is a sense of accomplishment here. You may, yourself not be a business owner but you can indirectly be one and contribute to the country’s economy.

But this needs careful planning. Do your research; find appropriate investment instruments. See what works for you and your family. Make your own investment portfolio, don’t copy others. This is a common trait amongst Indians. We follow what the other person has done.

This is a strict no-no. Each person has different financial goals. Do not do what the other person has done. Of course, one can take advice from family and friends.

But do what you need to do for your financial security in the long run. What you want and need may not be what the other person is aiming for. If you have never invested before, don’t wait. Start today. It can set you and your family up for the financial security that you are looking for.

PS: Mutual fund investments are subject to market risks. Read all scheme related documents carefully.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Depreks

    14 September 2021 at 3:02 AM

    Greetings! This is my 1st comment here so I just wanted to give a quick shout out and say I truly enjoy reading through your articles. Can you suggest any other blogs/websites/forums that deal with the same subjects? Thank you so much!

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Lifestyle

5 Tips to Motivate Students For Ongoing Board Exams

Exams are one of the important milestones in a student’s life. Students need motivation for board exams to pump their confidence and vanish exam fear.

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board exam motivation
Source: India.com

Lakhs of students are appearing for class X and XII Board exams in India every year. These exams are one of the most important milestones in a student’s academic life. Along with this students needs board exam motivation to pump their confidence and vanish the exam fear. This is why the stress caused during these exams is best addressed than avoided.

The urge to pass these exams with a good percentage can sometimes impact the mental health of the students. They might end up worrying about the exam when they should be focusing all their efforts on revisions.

Exam stress can reduce their self-confidence levels, leading to poor performance and outcomes. Hence, it is very crucial for teachers to boost the morale of the students.

Here is what a teacher has come up with some key tips to motivate the  students right before exams:

Understand Students’ Interests

It is a good practice for teachers to know the strengths and weaknesses of the students. Teachers can know their students better by conducting unique sessions centred around “get to know you” discussions. These kinds of sessions can be held on a monthly basis. Activities like clubbing students with similar interests into groups, and assigning writing or speaking tasks can help in increasing students’ enthusiasm for the subject.

Important To Give Feedback

One-to-one mentoring can be of great help for students to gear up before the exams. This can be an opportunity for the students to clarify all their individual doubts and understand the concepts better. They could also open up about the challenges in studies during these interactions. By providing personalised feedback, teachers can better understand each student’s capability. However, the onus remains on the teachers to encourage the young learners to speak during personal mentoring sessions.

Encourage Collaboration and Competition

Be in touch with students. Teachers should encourage the idea of collaboration and competition by pairing up students. They should be encouraged to justify their ideas or articulate an answer while working in pairs. This fosters peer correction and effective analysis of their own progression. Teachers can promote teamwork and this will help the students to learn from each other. Such activities will also expose them to a diverse set of ideas.

Schedule Regular Breaks

Exhaustion remains one of the biggest reasons for students’ demotivation right before any exam. The ability to think rationally is impaired on a greater scale when a person is tired and studies for long hours without taking timely breaks. It is advisable to have regular breaks during study sessions to strike the right balance between studies and recreation. Hence, teachers should help students prepare study timetables which have regular intervals in between.

Exercise a Little

Stress can be a major contributor to underperformance during exams. It is a proven fact that regular exercise keeps both the mind and body healthy. Practising simpler exercises like meditation or yoga can make the students’ minds feel more relaxed. This will help them to stay composed and concentrate better.

Keeping students’ board exam motivation peaked during Board exams is of utmost paramount. It is easy to motivate them if they have achievable goals, take regular breaks, revise concepts in advance and perform exercises.

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Lifestyle

6 indoor plants and their upkeep

While almost all green plants can be kept indoors, some plants need more attention than others. Here best indoor plants for home in India.

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best indoor plants for home in india
Source: @Safer Brand

While almost all green plants can be kept indoors, some plants need more attention than others which can be cumbersome if you have a busy schedule. But that doesn’t mean you can’t surround yourself with greenery. Let’s look at some best indoor plants for a home in India.

Rubber tree plant

It is fairly easy to maintain but is fussy when it comes to the amount of water it needs. Here is what you need to know if you have this plant. Rubber plants are rainforest specimens. While they need consistent moistness, they don’t want it to be soggy. Ensure that the pot the plant is in has adequate draining holes.

Use a dish under the pot lined with pebbles to catch extra water. This will keep the roots from sitting in water but provide the humidity as the water evaporates.

Croton plant

Its beautifully patterned leaves can brighten any space. Now that the rains are here in full force, it is important to ensure that you take care of all your plants. Overwatering can lead to root rot. An important thing to keep in mind is that the pot is well-drained. There is moisture in the air, overwatering will harm the plant. Croton also needs at least six to seven hours of sunshine but excess heat will damage its leaves. Try and keep the plant either East or West facing to make sure that the leaves don’t lose their colour.

English Ivy

It looks pretty and while it may look like it is an easy plant to look after, it is not the case. Like any other plant, this plant too will rot and its leaves will turn brown if you overwater them. Before you water it, check the soil. If it is moist, don’t water it. Make sure that the soil is loose and is kept in a well-drained pot. The plant grows in bright light but it is away from direct sunlight. It is a beautiful plan that can be kept inside the home; potting it in a hanging basket is an excellent way to enjoy the beauty of this plant.

Fern

The delicate curled leaves that unfurl into long, lacy fronds look pretty. Go into the forest and you will find ferns carpeting the floor. They also make a great houseplant. They can grow in any kind of pot — clay to hanging baskets to ceramic and don’t require full sun to thrive.

But Indian weather is different. A plant that may live happily in any other environment needs a lot of care here. They love moisture. During the rainy season make sure you don’t overwater the plant or the roots will rot. You can even spray water on the leaves to lock the moisture in. You can keep this plant in the bathroom or even the kitchen.

Green Aralia

One of the most important things to keep in mind if you have a green aralia is that it has to be kept away from cold drafts and windows during the winter months to ensure that it thrives. It needs a feed once every other month during the spring. During the summer months, the plant needs liquid fertiliser. However, be careful if you buy this plant; it is mildly toxic to humans and pets. Ingestion can lead to gastrointestinal irritation, nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea.

They are best as landscape plants. While watering aralia which is indoors, deep water is only when the soil is nearly dry. One of the most important things to keep in mind if you have a green aralia is that it has to be kept away from cold drafts and windows during the winter months to ensure that it thrives.

Pitcher plant

It is not always possible to ensure that the plant that you bring is going to live. Hence, it is important to take care of it properly. Let’s take the pitcher plant. So how does one take care of it if one wants to keep it indoors even if it is a carnivorous plant?

Depending on the species, some require full sunlight and those that originate in the floor of the rainforest may need filtered light. It requires moist soil, and keeps the potting soil moist, but not soggy. Allow the pot to drain thoroughly after watering and never let the pot stand in water or the roots will rot.

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Lifestyle

Mother’s Day 2022: Significance, history, and importance

Being a mother is a full-time job and gets no appreciation-one day where their worth is truly appreciated. Here’swhy we celebrate mothers day.

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why we celebrate mothers day
Source: @TOI

Most of us know that Mother’s Day is celebrated every second Sunday in May. But did you know why we celebrate mothers day? The whole idea behind Mother’s Day is to honour the mother of the family, to celebrate motherhood, maternal bonds, and the important role that they play in shaping society.

Why we celebrate mothers day?

It is said that the need to celebrate this day arose in the 1900s. Back then a daughter – Anna Jarvis, daughter of Ann Reeves Jarvis – to honour the sacrifices made by the mothers made for their children started this holiday.

It is said that Jarvis organized the first Mother’s Day service of worship and celebration at Andrews Methodist Episcopal Church in Grafton, West Virginia, the US which serves as the International Mother’s Day Shrine today.

Did you also know that different countries celebrate this day in different months? Some countries celebrate this day in March. Mother’s Day in Egypt is celebrated on March 21, the first day of spring in the northern hemisphere. In Georgia Mother’s Day is celebrated on March 3.

In some countries, the date is adopted to signify religion, like Virgin Mary Day in Catholic countries. Other countries selected a date with historical significance. For example, Bolivia’s Mother’s Day is a fixed date, commemorating a battle in which women participated to defend their children. Or in Russia where it is celebrated as International Women’s Day instead of Mother’s Day.

In India, the concept of celebrating Mother’s Day is new. This could be because we have traditionally been respectful of our mothers and have been revering them for generations.

We didn’t need to set a single day aside for them. But then, we (Indians) tend to ape the West and what the West does needs to be done back home.

Irrespective of how and when Mother’s Day is celebrated worldwide, children go out of their way to make this a special day for their mother. Lunches, treats and gifts are part and parcel of this day’s celebration.

What can you do? Here are some mothers day 2022 gift ideas

For the foodie mom

If your mother is a foodie a last-minute gift can be a meal subscription box that speaks to your mom’s interests. The subscription boxes are becoming popular across India as they select the finest and latest products every month and ship them across to their clients.

As a gift, you can opt for ingredients, or complete meals, including gourmet food and global cuisine. Innovative subscription boxes share recipes and exquisitely packaged boxes that can be used as a collector’s item.

If your mother is all about fitness

If your mom has been looking to shed some weight, a gym membership is a great gift! There are several gyms in each city that offer membership. This would help your mother work.

If your mother is all about looking good

A woman’s body goes through many changes, and protein is quintessential to cope with it. One can gift herbal products to the mother for that perfect skin that will keep her young at heart forever!

 

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