Hardship: Money mistakes you should avoid

By Maria Famakinwa

It is no longer news that Nigeria and its people are going through economic turmoil and every family needs extra income to make ends meet. Therefore every penny must be judiciously spent.

No doubt, making money is not an easy task and thus, it must be managed properly, put into good use for it to grow. Many businesses are floundering and dying off daily leaving scores with no means of livelihood. Findings showed that many that seemed well off still struggle financially also  despite earning good income due to money mistakes.

Different reasons have been attributed to mistakes many make in managing money which include: failure to save, spending above one’s income,  spending money one has not received, obtaining loan for what is not productive or profitable, spending money on what is not important, living larger than life among others.

A public servant, Mr Sunday Olawale submitted that the money mistakes made by some is living in expensive apartments (due to ego) which are far above their salaries. “Living in a high brow area can be great because of access to opportunities and social amenities that abound in  such areas which enhance standard of living, but you must make sure that your income can conveniently accommodate your expensive whims. If you spend more than a third of what you earn on house rent, then, you are living in a the place you cannot afford.”

Olawale added that the same goes for the schools the children attend.”It is not wise for parents who earn N100,000 as monthly salary to have their children in school where they pay N80,000 per term, such will continue to struggle financially without making ends meet. After all, there are some good private schools with affordable fees. Besides, there are some public schools that are better academically than private schools.”

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Sharing similar sentiment, an economist and a former banker, Mrs. Eniola Olalekan revealed that another common financial mistake many make is buying something on credit based on the money expected which she likened to spending money one is yet to receive. She advised that people should not promise anyone based on the money yet to receive or spend above what one’s has at that particular time because the money expected might not even come at all.

She also urged people to desist from lending anyone money they cannot forgo. “Experience has proven that most borrowers find it hard to pay back, so, if such happened, the person will be able to bear the loss and regards such as a bad debt.”

Another money mistakes frequently made by many according to an elderly banker is appending one’s signature to guarantee loan to someone as she warned that if the guarantor is not ready to pay the money on that person’s behalf, it is not advisable to append one’s signature. Many people did this and ended up in jail because those they stood in for ran away after getting the money.

An Akure-based businessman, Mr Seye Bada attributed most money mistakes made by people to spending money on things not important which he blamed women for. “Many especially women spend money on items they can do without for the moment. Before buying anything, ask yourself that what will happen if I did not buy this item, do I really need it now? If it is not a pressing need, you can walk away.

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“Poor saving culture also is a money mistake made by many Nigerians. They keep saying that their incomes are small and cannot save money but they would buy expensive clothes and throw big parties.

Since you know how small your salary is, you should be able to save, if you fail to save due to the excuse that you earn small salary, you cannot save when your salary is big because the more your income, the more your expenses. People should also avoid keeping money they do not intend to spend within their reach because there are always expenses available that one may be tempted to spend such money on.”

The businessman also revealed that another way in which most Nigerians commit financial blunder is spending their income on betting game like “baba Ijebu”, betnaija or ponzi money scheme with the hope of making huge profits which he observed had ruined many financially. “

People should be wise and come to the understanding that any betting game or money doubling scheme are always set up to make profits, especially now in the country where everyone is looking for short cut to get quick money, he urged.”

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