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Personal Finance

6 money savings tips for women in Nigeria

Here are 6 tips on how to save yourself into financial abundance.

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SAVE, LIABILITY, FINANCIAL, EXPENSES, BUDGET

Women are getting empowered through literacy and employment. The biggest motivation of a career-focused or business-oriented woman is the need to make ends meet, even in the tough terrain they find themselves, as a result of their gender or the country’s poor economy.

The need to reduce financial stress is her top priority, which is why she puts in the hard work to make it happen. Inasmuch as a woman can be highly industrious, there is a number of factors that are detrimental to her finances, and also affect her journey towards financial freedom. They are extravagant spending and a lack of savings or investments.

READ: Personal Finance Culture: The 4 Cs of Financial Success 

Lack of savings has made some women go insolvent. This is why it is vital to cultivate the habit of savings, no matter how small you earn. Savings is very crucial for women because it goes a long way to determine their financial independence in the near future. Though a lot of women are faced with challenges when it comes to savings due to tons of expenditures, if you are determined to save, all it entails is self-discipline.

Also, note that you must not be a multi-millionaire business owner, or earn a lot of money for this to be feasible. You can start with the little funds that come your way now. This will keep you better prepared when the big bucks start coming in.

READ: CBN reviews minimum interest rates on savings deposit to 1.25%

Every individual who became rich through hard work certainly passed through the savings stage (big or small percentages) as a means of pooling resources. Some women usually excuse themselves from saving, under the excuse that they earn too little, forgetting the fact that savings are a matter of habit, rather than ability. As a woman, being employed does not make you economically independent; a lot still depends on your ability to utilize the income, by making a sound decision when it comes to savings and investments.

READ: CBN launches framework for advancing women’s financial inclusion in Nigeria

To attain financial freedom within the next 10 years, here are 6 tips on how to save yourself into financial abundance:

  1. Get another means of income – This simply means having another stream of income or a side business that generates extra funds for you. Sometimes, your main source of income is not enough to pay your bills, not to speak of putting aside funds for savings. A lot of women make extra income from event planning, cake making, bead making, catering, fashion, hair styling, etc. For you to make extra bucks for yourself, you can decide to venture into any of the above-mentioned, then create your own niche. These side jobs can be structured in a way that you can do them during weekends, or when you are on leave (for career women). Also, you can venture into buying and selling businesses, where you sell your products online. The profit made from your side businesses can then be channeled into your savings account for future purposes or investing it in a viable business.
  2. Reduce your expenses – When it comes to saving, one major thing that prevents some women from actualizing it is extravagant spending, which has left a lot of women bankrupt. Some of these expenses have to do with purchasing luxurious things like expensive bags, shoes, clothes, hairs, etc., in order to impress people or to stay noticed. Looking gorgeous is a good move, but it should be done wisely. This is why it is advisable to cut down on expenses to enable you to save. Always form the habit of reducing the way you spend, especially on things that will later become a liability. Have a budget put in place prior to shopping; it aids you in tracking your expenses.
  3. Make daily, weekly or monthly savings – Another tip that helps you to save is having a daily, weekly, and monthly savings plan. Irrespective of your profession/business, it is important to cultivate the habit of saving. You can decide to do it daily, weekly, or monthly, and choose any plan that works for you and stick to it. Saving has to do with self -discipline and good planning. You can decide to automate your account daily, weekly, or monthly to whichever plans that suit the type of job that you do. Reason being that some women earn daily, i.e. for business owners, while some earn monthly for career women.
  4. Focus more on assets than on liabilities – A lot of people make the mistake of acquiring expensive things just be noticed, and stay relevant, which is not a good financial decision. Always channel your funds to things that will appreciate in years to come, as it is the best way to gain financial freedom. One money-saving tip is, instead of acquiring those expensive clothes and bags, you can decide to go for affordable things and put the remaining money into your savings account; hence, you can be able to invest it in the near future, especially on things that will increase in value.
  5. Focus on networking with friends that will financially build you – The popular saying, “Show me your friend and I will tell you who you are” applies here. Mingling with friends that are financially inclined, will help you achieve your financial goals; friends whose major discussion is about the best platform to save and invest their hard-earned money. Be wary of the ones that will lure you to lavish your funds on extraneous things, like acquiring wants and not needs. Choose friends that will assist you in making good financial decisions, and flee from the ones that will deceive you to spend all you have earned and saved.
  6. Have a positive mindset about money – Having a positive mindset about money is very essential when it comes to putting aside funds for savings. It is imperative that you create one, irrespective of how little you are earning.

READ: 7 key ways women can effectively build a professional career while running a family

If you do not cultivate the habit of saving with the little funds you have, you wouldn’t be able to do so when you start earning trailer-loads of money.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Ifeoma

    November 21, 2020 at 7:04 am

    Saving the money in a bank account is the problem because the bank will be taking the money without the customer consent and when asked they will say it is bank charges.
    Something should be done about them ie the banks.

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Personal Finance

5C’s of creditworthiness: What lenders, Investors look for in a business plan

Business owners need to be aware of the criteria lenders and investors use when evaluating the creditworthiness of entrepreneurs seeking financing.

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Five things to consider before securing a loan

Banks usually are not a new venture’s sole source of capital because a bank’s return is limited by the interest rate it negotiates, but its risk could be the entire amount of the loan if the new business fails. Once a business is operational and has an established financial track record, banks become a regular source of financing.

For this reason, the small business owner needs to be aware of the criteria lenders and investors use when evaluating the creditworthiness of entrepreneurs seeking financing.

Will the business that an entrepreneur actually creates look exactly like the company described in the business plan? Of course, not.

The real value in preparing a business plan is not so much in the finished document itself but in the process it goes through – a process in which the entrepreneur learns how to compete successfully in the marketplace. In addition, a solid plan is essential to raising the capital needed to start a business; lenders and investors demand it.

Lenders and investors refer to these criteria as the five C’s of credit.

1. Capital: A small business must have a stable income base before any lender is willing to grant a loan. Otherwise, the lender would not be making, in effect, a capital investment in the business. Most banks refuse to make loans that are capital investment because the potential for return on the investment is limited strictly on the interest on the loan, and the potential loss would probably exceed the reward. In addition, the most common reasons that banks give for rejecting small business loan applications are undercapitalization or too much debt. Banks expect a small company to have an equity base investment by the owner(s) that will help support the venture during times of financial strain, which are common during the start-up and growth phases of a business. Lenders and investors see capital as a risk-sharing strategy with entrepreneurs.

2. Capacity: A synonym for capital is cash flow. Lenders and investors must be convinced of the firm’s ability to meet its regular financial obligation and to repay loans, and that takes cash. More small businesses fail from lack of cash than from lack of profit. It is possible for a company to be showing a profit and still have no cash – that is, to be bankrupt. Lenders expect small businesses to pass the test of liquidity, especially for short term loans. Potential lenders and investors examine closely a small company’s cash flow position to decide whether it has the capacity necessary to survive until it can sustain itself.

3. Collateral: Collateral includes any asset an entrepreneur pledges to a lender as security for repayment of a loan. If the company defaults on a loan, the lender has the right to sell the collateral and use the proceeds to satisfy the loan. Typically, banks make much unsecured loans (those not backed up by collateral) to business start-ups. Bankers view the entrepreneurs’ willingness to pledge collateral (personal or business assets) as an indication of their dedication to making the venture a success. A sound business plan can improve a banker’s attitude towards venture.

4. Character: Before extending a loan or making an investment in a small business, lenders and investors must be satisfied with an entrepreneur’s character. The evaluation of character frequently is based on intangible factors such as honesty, integrity, competence, polish, determination, intelligence, and ability. Although the qualities judged are abstract, this evaluation plays a critical role in the decision to put money into a business or not.

5. Conditions: The conditions surrounding a funding request also affects an entrepreneur’s chances of receiving financing. Lenders and investors consider factors relating to a business’ operation such as potential growth in the market, competition, location, strength, weakness, opportunities and threats. Another important condition influencing the banks is the shape of the overall economy, including interest rate levels, inflation rate, and demand for money. Although these factors are beyond an entrepreneur’s control, they still are an important component in a banker’s decision.

The higher a smaller business scores on the five C’s, the greater its chances of receiving a loan.

 

Written by Chukwuma Aguwa

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Personal Finance

Don’t be fooled by COVID-related scams

Always consult the institution in charge of health-related matters to confirm any fishy information you come across.

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The nature of and the manifestation of the Covid-19 disease is such that there’s only a little time available to remedy the situation before it gets chronic. Although the infection begins by exhibiting mild symptoms, if you do nothing in a short time, it could lead to death in a matter of days.

This whole picture has caused many to become desperate about Covid-related issues, launching into panic mode at the sight of any information. As a result, such people are not far away from falling for fraudsters.

With the different kinds of news flying around, you mustn’t be fooled by Covid-related scams.

The Coronavirus threatens the health of millions of people around the world daily, also killing thousands along the way. To curb the spread and remedy the situation, bodies like the CDC, WHO, and every country’s local health organisation like the NCDC, frequently circulate information around communities. However, it has also led to fraudsters taking advantage to provide fake news, and even asking for donations.

Each day, there seems to be a new account or NGO asking for donations into the health sector, and though some are legit, many are just fraudsters posing to take advantage of innocent citizens. So far, numerous complaints about scams have been recorded, especially with people who are looking to support the health cause in any way they can.

Channels used for COVID-related scams 

There are three major ways scammers take advantage of the haziness of the situation to dupe people. To start with, they appeal to the emotions of humans, who see the high death toll and suffering. As a result of what is happening, people have been willing to donate funds for medical supplies, isolation centres, and financial compensation for medical workers.

Scammers take advantage of this by posing as charity organisations and solicit for funds. Most times, as soon as their target is met, they clear their footprint without leaving a trace behind.

Another way they scam people is by manufacturing and selling fake or low-quality health products. Everyone wants to get their hands on a cure, or something that can at least protect them from the virus, and scammers are meeting their needs by providing just that.

The World Health Organization currently approves only one vaccine, and any other thing outside it is outrightly fake or just a supplement that will help your body. Currently, only the Pfizer vaccine is clinically tested and approved to work. Be sure to not throw your money in the wind by purchasing some of these fake drugs around.

Lastly, scammers create systems to extract a patient’s personal information, thereby having access to the person’s true identity. It could be in the simple form of opening a registration portal where you supply all your details.

Therefore, only give information to approved bodies and not any random online site that appears legit. These fraudulent individuals can do a lot of damage to your identity. Stay vigilant, only communicate with approved bodies, and always ask questions if you are not sure or suspect foul play.

The place of electronics in COVID-related scams

These fraudsters usually reach out to you through the digital sphere. Hence, watch out for cold calls, text messages, or emails requesting donations to certain bodies. The best way to confirm the legitimacy of such a message is to visit the organisation’s official website in a different browser. Never follow the link in the mail or text directly, as it can be easily embedded with spyware. Therefore, a single click could see them extract all your personal information, including bank details.

Also, please stay away from those who claim to have a cure, and accompany it with testimonies of people who have used it. They are low graders desperate for your money. Vet them by searching online and see what people are saying. In all, always look out for suspicious messages, and opt out if you are sceptical.

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In a nutshell, you should not believe any cure, vaccine or supplement that the World Health Organization does not approve of.

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Conclusion

The government or legit health institutions do not cold call citizens to request donations or coerce them into making one. If you receive a call out of the blues, chances are it’s a scam, which is why they mostly try to hurry you to donate before you realise it. Always consult the institution in charge of health-related matters to confirm any fishy information you come across.

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