Tips for developing a robust savings culture to cushion you during tough times


Amidst the ongoing turbulent economic times, the imperative of a robust savings culture continues to be very apparent. Businesses and companies worldwide are reassessing their expenditures, with job cuts and furloughs looming large. Indeed, according to the Federation of Kenyan Employers, over 70,000 Kenyans employed by the private sector lost their jobs in slightly over one year, with 40 percent of employers reporting plans to reduce the number of employees to meet the increasing costs of operation.  Compounded by reports of reduced incomes across multiple sectors, such realities underscore the need for financial safety nets at the individual level to serve as buffers against the anxiety and uncertainty that accompanies sudden shocks like company closures. Julius Ouma, the acting CEO of Faulu Bank, explains that in the face of economic volatility, individuals must recognize the significance of prudent financial planning and savings. A proactive approach to savings, he says, safeguards against unforeseen circumstances and instills a sense of financial security and stability. Below are some of his pointers to help you get you started on your savings journey.

Financial management

Prudent financial management is a foundation for developing a savings culture. Cost-cutting measures can safeguard against downturns in income. Borrowing tips from the business world, it is important to realize that adequate liquidity through cash reserves can provide a vital cushion against unforeseen expenses or disruptions in cash flow.

Develop an emergency fund

Building an emergency fund that is capable of covering essential expenses for several months can mitigate the stress and hardship associated with sudden un- or under-employment.  Such a fund can also serve as a buffer against unexpected expenses, including medical emergencies and car repairs, helping you avoid going into debt or having to resort to high-interest loans. This is in addition to giving you the peace of mind to make confident and strategic decisions about your career and future financial goals. 

Multiple revenue channels

Diversifying income streams through investments or freelance opportunities can enhance financial resilience, offering alternative sources of income during periods of economic uncertainty. This strategy bolsters financial resilience by providing supplementary income streams, reducing reliance on a single source. During economic uncertainty, these diversified streams offer stability and flexibility, mitigating the impact of downturns on overall finances.

Supportive bank relations

As you develop your savings kitty, it is important to have it stored in a secure bank account, and one that offers rewarding returns. Choosing a savings account involves carefully evaluating various factors such as interest rates, fees, minimum balance requirements, accessibility, customer service quality, and additional features that align with your financial goals and preferences. At Faulu, we have several of such account options including:

·       Faulu Lengo Account – a term account that helps you put together cash for desired projects of assets. With a savings period of between three months and ten years and access to instant credit of up to 80% of the deposit amount with no appraisal for emergencies, advances, this account ensures that your savings are indeed a cushion, when needed.

·       Hazina Plus Savings Account – helps you build a savings culture, while enjoying good returns from as little as KSh200. The account allows you to earn a premium interest on your savings, a free withdrawal per quarter as well as zero maintenance or ledger fees.

·       Hazina Junior Account – This is an account that encourages a savings culture for children below the age of 18 years. This account inculcates a savings culture amongst children by helping them achieve specific financial goals like saving for Christmas, upcoming school trips, or desired toys.

·       Hybrid Term Deposit Account– This is a high-yielding account that allows your deposits to grow much faster through competitive interest of more than 13% per annum, payable quarterly and semi-annually, from investments of as low as KSh500,000.

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