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Can't get enough of online shopping deals? Unable to stick to a budget? Feeling at sea with your investments? It may be time for an audit of your financial habits. For most of us, good financial habits don't happen automatically. They need to be worked on.

As you usher into the New Year, spare a thought for any undesirable financial habits that could be hampering your prosperity.

Let's look at some financial habits you must give up, to ensure a prosperous future for yourself and your loved ones:

1Spending without a care

If you're guilty of spending most of what you earn, you need to consider downsizing your expenses. And when you start spending more than you make, you are living on credit. In such a scenario, you will have no money left to save or invest. So, what you need to do right away is to categorise your expenses as necessities or luxuries, and then work out a way to cut down on the latter. Once you do this, you will be left with enough to set aside a fraction of your salary as savings. Though it may seem old-fashioned, a budget is the key to a financially sound future. Notably, drafting a budget can prevent you from overspending too.

2Not being clear about financial goals

You might have enough savings and an investment plan in place. But have you checked if it is aligned with your financial goals? Any investment plan, no matter how well-planned, can fail to deliver expected results if it is not oriented to meet your financial needs and goals. So, it is crucial that you be clear what you desire from your money. Your financial goals also need to be evaluated from time to time as they are bound to change as you move ahead in life.

3Investing solely to save taxes

Contrary to popular belief, tax planning is not synonymous with financial planning. While it is essential to consider tax benefits while investing in a particular product, there's more to investments than just that. Other important factors such as your long-term financial needs, your risk appetite and the purpose of investment need to feature first on the priority list while making an investment.

4Making impulsive financial decisions

Are you guilty of investing in a certain product without completely understanding the purposes it can serve for you?

It's time you made better thought-out financial decisions that do more than catering to your impulses. So, make it a point to do your research before giving in to the passing recommendations offered by peers. Find out whether it is the best-suited investment avenue for you and only then take the call. You could consult a financial advisor to help you plan and execute your investments the right way.

5Ignoring the importance of life insurance

New Year is the perfect time to embrace knowledge and bid goodbye to ignorance. So, if you've been holding out on buying life insurance till you get older, it's time for a change. While you spend a huge part of your day working to secure your loved ones' future, you cannot ignore the uncertain nature of life. What better New Year's gift to give your family than to protect their future and give them the freedom to pursue their dreams?

This New Year, give your family the gift of a financially secure future. Consider iSelect - a completely customisable term plan that promises to take care of your family in your absence. It offers life insurance and terminal illness cover along with an optional accidental death/total and permanent disability benefit. What's more, this plan provides you with a life cover of Rs 1 crore for a nominal premium of just Rs 365.

This festive season, let's embrace good financial habits and look forward to many more years of celebration with prosperity and happiness.

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