I was born in the 80’s and in the 90’s receiving the lovely blue $2 note was a dream come true and immediately it would be put in the piggy bank to be enjoyed later on. At the end of the school term I would withdraw a small portion of my savings and buy coveted treats. The Black Friday in 1998 brought a wave of events that changed the status quo of my piggy bank it quickly became irrelevant as the economy turned for the worst. The chain of events that followed Black Friday included the devaluation of the Zimbabwean dollar and the Zim Dollar tumbled until every Zimbabwean was a trillionaire in 2008. In February 2009 the economy was dollarized and all the savings I made were lost be it in the piggy bank or bank accounts.This was against a backdrop of a number of banks collapsing and depositors losing their money.
At the end the day this saving for a rainy day is still an essential element that will forever be pervasive in day to day lives. The question then arises how does one take practical steps to save and minimize my risk as a Zimbo with the impending risk of losing my money at the back of mind. There are a number of traditional and non traditional ways to save that one can explore.
- Short term fixed deposit account:
Nowadays there are various financial institutions that offer fixed deposits accounts that can run for 3, 6, 9 – 12 months and one can deposit their money and earn interest on the amount deposited. The depositor indicates the intention of saving money eg to buy a car and the amount is only released once proof of that the funds are to be used for that at the end of the set time period. This is a perfect way of saving if self-discipline is an issue.
- Piggy Bank
This is an age old trusted method that can be used. It requires a great deal of self discipline as an individual.In the use of this method one can use an a approach where you aim to save money every day of the year. For example on the first day of the month one would save a $1 and on the last day of the month save $31 and so on. Alternatively one can save correspondently with the days in the year ie a $1 on the first and $365 on the last day of the year. This method will force one to come up with ingenious was of generating revenue or save more at the beginning of the year to reduce the amount needed at the end of the year.
- Internal Savings and Lending group
This involves a group of individuals who decide to deposit a certain amount every month into a pool eg ten people depositing $100 monthly. This money is then lent out internally to members at an interest of say 10% to trusted borrowers within or outside the group.This process is can run for 6 months to a year and at the end of the day one would have saved money and gained interest at the same time in a relatively safe manner.The accountability element also ensures.
- Mukando aka round
This can be done in real time or virtually. There are virtual platforms such as eMkando This involves people giving money into a pot at agreed upon intervals eg weekly or monthly and this is given to group members according to a preplanned order .This is helpful when saving for a particular goal or project.
These above are some of the simple and easy ways one can save for a rainy day as a Zimbo. Let the “Piggy bank” return as it is a key to wealth creation. Next week we will explore what investment is and its importance.
by Nyasha Maturure and Mitchell Name