An Islamic guide for saving smarter

Economics Tamalika Basu
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Smarter saving lessons we got as children were from our mothers. We all remember our Ammis (mothers) maintaining a careful record of our monthly budget. This is because they needed to make hisaab. That means being accountable for the money they used. It shows an act of responsibility in the scenario of finance.

When we grew up a bit, we always laughed at this idea. Even some of us really thought that this is unnecessary. But this attitude changed once we started to earn our own money. The stark reality hit us like a bucket of chilled water in the face on a cold winter day!

Now, life has taught us about budgeting, accountability and responsibility. We have learnt that the secret of saving money is the art of spending it wisely.

Saving is not necessarily limited to money and finance. There are many different avenues where you can save.

Use your wealth for your benefit:

As true Muslims, our duty is to acknowledge that our wealth is actually a blessing from Allah. WE must use it for our own halaal needs and desires. But never forget, Almighty Allah has given you a measure of wealth to verify what you will do with it.

And spend in the way of Allah and do not throw [yourselves] with your [own] hands into destruction [by refraining]. And do good; indeed, Allah loves the doers of good. [Quran 2:195]

Don’t waste:

Don’t be extravagant. We must be aware of what we are spending, how much we are wasting, and what consequences they have in our life.

O Children of Adam! Dress properly whenever you are at worship. Eat and drink, but do not waste. Surely He does not like the wasteful. [Quran, 7:31]

Practical tips for saving money:

1. Know your disposable income:

It is simple, yet many people forget what their disposable income is. It is very much important to know exactly how much you have in your pocket so that you know how much to spend.

2. Learn to save:

Don’t indulge in credit cards. Spend cash or via debit cards only. There is a golden rule of saving money, which says… “If I cannot afford it right now, then I probably don’t need it right now.” This rule serves as a motivation.

3. Learn about budgeting:

Be honest when you add income and expenses to your budget. You cannot spend money you don’t have. You should not take a debt. Also, be mindful of saving – remember to save something every month, for those urgent times.

4. Become street smart:

Compare online prices with your local stores’ prices. Try to avail of the special offers both online and in shops. Capitalize on this. These offers usually help in great savings.

5. Food funda:

If your family has no problem eating leftovers, then you might use last night food to make tasty treats. This way the food wastage can be shortened. For example, you can make a yummy sandwich with last night’s leftover roast chicken. But if your family is fussy, cook just enough for one meal. No more, no less.

This is how you can manage your money and save a lot for those ‘rainy days’. Remember, saving is always encouraged in Islam, Allah always wanted us to be mindful of our life and livelihood.

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