World Savings Day, celebrated last week (the 31st), was created to raise awareness about the importance of preserving resources for the future. However, in Brazil, due to rising product prices and current financial difficulties, saving is a luxury for a few. This is shown in a survey carried out by the Axxus Institute, in partnership with Unicamp and the Brazilian Association of Financial Educators (Abefin), according to which 80% of Brazilian workers are unable to save to make any form of investment, while the other 20% invest in some fund monthly, or only when there is some money left at the end of the month.
The survey was conducted in more than 100 Brazilian companies, with 2,000 employees from 10 states. Data from the Credit Protection Service (SPC Brazil) and the National Confederation of Shopkeepers (CNDL) prove that saving is not a habit for Brazilians: only 35% of Brazilians usually save, with 28% claiming to keep what is left of the budget and 7% stipulate a value be saved.
In August, according to the CNDL / SPC Brasil survey, only 16% of respondents managed to save some money, while 40% had to withdraw part of their resources in order to pay the bills. Unemployment and the economic crisis are largely to blame in this situation, says financial planner Annalisa Blando Dal Zotto, partner at Par Mais, a consulting firm, but even those who are employed and with income have difficulty spending less than they earn.
According to her, the lack of coordination between what comes in from money every month and what is consumed by regular and extraordinary expenses leads to a dangerous attitude towards finances, which is the idea of saving only if you have left money. This attitude of ‘being left over‘ does not help, because it hardly happens. Most people always postpone it for the next month. I prefer the ‘pay-off before‘ strategy. When you separate, for example, 10% of your money right after receiving the salary, it can be difficult at first, but gradually you learn to live with the remaining 90%, points out Annalisa.
In addition to the lack of savings culture in the country, Annalisa believes that the lack of habit of making a domestic budget helps to understand why so many Brazilians do not save money.
It is important to create a goal to save money. Without focus, it becomes more difficult to save-warns the expert, emphasizing that the Brazilian is still very immediate and does not worry about accumulating assets for the future. The lack of habit of saving happens because people don’t usually associate savings with the realization of dreams. And that’s why they don’t plan, he says.
President of the Brazilian Association of Financial Educators (Abefin), Reinaldo Domingos also advocates saving first to spending later, The ideal is that, when receiving the salary, the person reserves the necessary amount for their future goals and readjust their standard of living life.
Saving money to make dreams come true is something that will certainly change your relationship with finances completely. That way, you will abandon exaggerated and unconscious consumption habits and become someone who constantly makes dreams come true, he claims. Domingos adds that, in order to save, it will be necessary for everyone in the family, including the children, to change their behavior regarding waste and extra expenses. It is good to set up a conversation with everyone, not about reducing expenses, but about dreams to be realized.
Speak openly and establish at least one collective dream, something that everyone at home wants, like a trip or a renovation in the house. Annalisa reinforces that there is no need to give up consumption and stop doing things that give pleasure. The watchword is balance! Knowing how to balance the budget and avoiding unnecessary spending makes it easy to save part of your income every month. The secret is planning and knowing how to prioritize. However, says the expert, there is no rule for saving monthly, but everyone should save some amount every month. A good practice to have an emergency reserve and to plan for retirement is to seek to save 20% of the monthly net income, he recommends.
But how do you do it on such a tight budget? For the financial planner, a good start may be to save part of the 13th salary, the vacation bonus, or even a bonus.
And in the event of a salary increase or promotion, consider saving at least 50% of the increase, instead of incorporating it into the current standard of living, he suggests.
Caixa Econômica Federal’s savings account closed last year with net funding of R$8 billion and a total of 74 million savers. For financial educator Rogério Braga, a member of the Brazilian Association of Financial Educators (Abefin), with a population of more than 207 million people, there is a wide path for savings to grow even more in the country.
For the specialist, Brazilians still do not have the habit of saving. He points out that one of the main problems of the Brazilian population today is excessive consumption, and the accumulation of credits, which leads to financial uncontrolled. The first step for those who want to save money is to establish a dream or a life goal. The biggest secret is to establish this objective and start making a financial diagnosis of life. Start to get that resource, separate the part of it to save at the beginning, because if it is left until the end of the month, there will be a lack of resources, he said.
Talking to the family about the collective dream is an important second step. Braga advises people to put all goals on paper. It has to be disciplined. The discipline of following this whole process leads to success, he bet. For the financial educator, Brazilians have a bad habit of being immediate, which ends up putting some future goals ahead of their reality. He recommends that people set deadlines and learn to spend and save. This is a daily process, he said. You have to use resources for something that is really necessary, not superfluous. Saving first is always very important. The habit of saving must be done before receiving the salary and spending on consumption.
Braga believes that with these steps, there may already be a general change, a new view on the habit of saving. And, then, savings benefit from this, because it is very easy, very accessible to the entire Brazilian population. It is also part of the financial diagnosis that people start to observe where there is excess, how they can spend better, and where they can save. Braga stated that many people make the mistake of spending beyond their standard of living and, therefore, the account is never closed and they always end up in debt. The ideal is to identify where to spend. Spending without excess, within your reality, is fundamental.
Check out How to save 90% of your income in 2020
- Establishing your dreams and healthy habits depends directly on the desire to make dreams come true those forgotten desires, sometimes almost abandoned, but are very important for each of us. Having goals outlined is an incentive to save every month and get what you want without going into debt and committing much of your income to debt, which can lead to default.
- Put the goals down on paper list those dreams and find out how much it will cost to realize each one. Keep in mind that how many months or years from now you want to spend you will know how much you need to save monthly for all of them simultaneously. This is nothing more than planning.
Know where to save and make a financial diagnosis for 30 days (or 90 if you have variable income). Record all your expenses, both large and small, separating them by type of expenses (such as meals away from home, supermarket, and cell phone, for example). Analyze what expenses you can reduce or eliminate to save. Talk to the kids so they can save water and electricity and keep their school supplies and toys. Keep a habit Don’t save only if you have money left over. If you set a goal to save 10% of your monthly income, try to separate that part of the money in advance. Schedule your investments it is a resource available in most bank accounts and can be used with savings accounts, investment funds, and Tesouro Direto.