Money can help us achieve our dreams and oftentimes, makes us happy. But the way we spend money varies depending on our spending character and power.
Take an instance where you’ve just entered a shopping mall. How do you feel when you spend money buying things? Do you feel elated while shopping? Or does the action bring emotional pain and regret?
Some people enjoy shopping to the extent of spending outside their budget. But others stick to the budget when it comes to spending.
In this article, we will explore spending traits and how we can adopt money habits that improve our finances in 2022.
First things first, a person’s spending habits can be characterized as either tightwad, frugal, or spendthrift. These traits determine spending power and money habits.
Tightwad is a spending habit that pushes people to spend less. A person described as a tightwad often feels intense pain at the prospect of spending money. Studies show that men and educated people tend to be more tightwad when it comes to spending.
Frugal refers to a trait where you don’t spend because you want to save. A frugal person has the habit of spending less to maximise savings.
The opposite of tightwad and frugal is spendthrift. This refers to a habit that makes one feel less pain at the prospect of spending. Spendthrifts tend to spend more, and studies have characterised this group as being composed of children, young people, and women. That said, everyone regardless of age, ethnicity or gender can have any of the above spending habits.
We develop money habits from our daily activities revolving around spending. These become the factors determining whether we meet our financial goals or not.
If you plan for 2022 to be your year of great financial development, how you spend your money will make or break this resolution - no matter how much you earn.
Whether you are tightwad, frugal or spendthrift, the following are the best money habits you should embrace to keep your finances on track:
One of the best habits to keep your finances on track is to analyze your financial status. Check your bank account often to know how much money comes in and goes out. This includes monitoring your mobile money accounts.
It will give you an insight into how much money you have and the rate at which you are spending it. If you are a spendthrift, you will be in a position to regulate your spending power based on this data and improve your financial growth.
For frugal and tightwad habits, you will be able to plan your budget and know how much money you will put into your shopping and how much you want to save. This will balance spending and saving power.
After you have analyzed your financial status through your bank/mobile money statement, make savings deductions automatic.
You can set a given percentage of money to be transferred from your bank account to the savings account. Maintain this habit by aligning it with your financial goals throughout the year.
For spendthrifts, this habit is a savior from any financial loss likely to occur while spending. A tightwad or frugal person will feel fulfilled by the savings habit, and any money spent won’t cause them any regret.
You could make saving even fun by joining a savings challenge and further increasing your kitty - whether it is for building your emergency fund or for a family vacation - a goal that both a spendthrift and frugal person will enjoy achieving.
The way we spend money depends on a person’s traits – whether spendthrift, tightwad, or frugal. The best way you can make sure your money goes to safe use is to set a budget for spending. Planning will allow you to shop within your budget and put your money to good use.
A person whose money habits fall under the category of spendthrift will be able to shop as well as save when using a budget list. Tightwads and the frugal fellow will also have some money for shopping as well as enough to save.
Planning your expenditure reduces risks related to impulse buying, which might hurt your savings plans.
Emergencies are inevitable, and once you have money, it is time you start thinking about when you won’t have any at your disposal. One of the wisest decisions you can make is to set up an emergency fund.
While there are many routes to setting up an emergency fund, matching every amount you spend with a similar contribution to your emergency fund account can really expedite the growth of this financial cushion.
This may, however, not be possible for everyone depending on income levels, type of work contract or debt, and other obligations. Nevertheless, the idea is to set aside an amount equivalent to several months worth of living expenses (ideally 3 - 6 months) to cushion you in the event of income loss or other financial upheavals.
If you are frugal or tightwad, make sure to allocate a portion of your savings to an emergency fund. The same applies to spendthrifts; after you have planned for your expenditure, you should set aside emergency savings, to help when the need arises without having to dip your hands into the savings or investment account.
Debts are part of life but we can reduce the rate at which we keep them or avoid them all together. Make it a habit to avoid late payment of rent, school fees, or any other bill that might increase your debt level.
If you are a spendthrift, make sure you plan your expenditure and shop within your budget to avoid borrowing to cover up for your spending. If you’re a tightwad or frugal person, pay your debts on time to avoid accumulating interest that might hurt your financial growth and progress.
When you earn a bonus or commission for a particular task/period, make it a habit to channel this money into your savings account. This is one way you can grow your finances to achieve your goals at the end of the year.
For spendthrifts, stick to your budget to avoid getting into extra expenditure from the extra money earned in this manner. Or you can have a percentage of it transferred to the savings account and use the rest for shopping.
This is probably the best spending habit you should embrace to achieve your goals. As long as you save and spend your income, you should also have a periodic review of how much you are saving and how much you are spending. This will give you the financial progress report.
The progress report can help spendthrifts understand where they need to spend more or less and improve their savings account. For frugal and tightwad individuals, this report gives an overview of their spending power and when they need to improve it.
Saving and spending are all habits essential to our financial growth and development. Whether a person is a spendthrift, tightwad, or frugal, developing positive money habits is key towards achieving personal goals.
When you set up a savings plan, you’ll have an expenditure plan in your mind. Therefore, when these two are in sync, your financial plan is kept on track.
Money habits are nurtured based on personal goals. You can learn the best money habits and develop them in relation to your financial goals.