I have been writing more topics lately about OFW finances to help them properly use and manage their hard-earned money. I’m also an OFW and I know most of the time, we don’t know where and how to spend our money in the most efficient way.
I would like to discuss with you some of the principles I am adopting and following right now in my life in terms of managing my finances. It is the funadamental lessons that every OFW and individuals should learn to achieve a right mindset on dealing with money.
More and more Filipinos are going abroad each day to work there for years away from their families. Most of the time, most of them are unprepared on the life they will face abroad in terms of emotional, physical, mental, spiritual and financial aspects.
As a way to help and reach some OFWs, because I know not all of them will read this post, I am dedicating several posts in this blog about personal finance and management for them. In the future, I want to write some topics that would also be helpful for them like topics on dealing with loneliness, family relationship, working plan, business, investments and many more.
Majority of OFW these days are lacking financial literacy because many of them were not taught and trained on the basic lessons of personal finance. It is the reason I would like to write more articles about this topic.
The first principle I learned about personal finance when I started working as an OFW is this: Spend less than what you earn. It is a fact that an OFW earns much more working abroad than in the Philippines that’s why many of them endure hardships and loneliness so they can provide more for their family’s needs.
Here is the list of my personal finance guide for OFW that you can follow and do. I hope this one helps you to manage your finances and have more money in your pocket.
1. Spend less than what you earn
This principle is a very basic lesson in personal finance but many people don’t follow it including me before I grasped its idea. You don’t need complicated knowledge or tools to understand this principle, a simple math will do.
If you are earning P20,000 a month, you should not spend more than P20,000. As much as possible, live your lifestyle below that amount. It is easier to say than done, right? There are many ways that you can adopt to help you spend less than what you earn.
One good advice that I can give to you is do not buy what you cannot afford. It is the first thing that you should do to stick below your income. It will be also advisable if you can make a budget or at least record your expenses so you can have information where you money goes.
2.Buy things that you know and understand
I like this principlev very much. Many OFW are buying “investments”, insurance, houses, cars and other properties in spite of lack of understanding and studying about the things they are buying. In the end, most of them fall into frauds and scams. If only they will study first and research which one is the most profitable and the best, their money will be more useful for them and they will avoid any scams out there.
Most people are afraid about investing or starting a business because they don’t know how it works or how can they start without prior experience. However, as you study and learn about the investing and business, your fear will be disappeared and you will get better confidence about your decisions. I want to say it again: Understand what you buy!
3. Earn money as much as you can
As an OFW, we want to earn more so we can buy things that we want and provide more for our family’s needs. It is not evil to dream for more money, it is good as long as the motive and the method of acquiring money is legal and fair.
Maybe you are limited by the fact that you are working abroad so you cannot start a business to make more money. Actually, you can earn money aside from your job by learning how to invest. You may start investing in mutual funds or Philippine stocks. It is easy and simple to apply for a mutual fund or stock broker account even if you are working abroad.
However, you should furnish several application forms and documents that will be needed in your application. After that, you can send all forms and requirements via registered mail from the country you are working to the Philippines. In addition, you can also do some overtime if your job and company permits it so you can add extra money to your salary.
4. Save and invests money as much as you can
It is not enough to make more money, you have also to learn how to save and invest some portion of it. As an OFW, savings will be your emergency fund whenever something happened not according to your plan. OFW must give high priority in saving money because working abroad it is not permanent.
The time will come that you cannot work anymore or your company will not need you because someone is more capable. If you don’t believe it, it is time now because it will certainly happen. So when that time happen, you have enough money that you can use for starting a business of your own.
If you have enough savings, you can start investing some amount of your money. There are many ways on how to invest that is simple and easy for OFW. One of the best investments that you can start even if you are working abroad is mutual fund. You can apply for it by sending you application forms and requirements. Visit this link to learn more about investing mutual funds.
5. Give money as much as you can
Giving money is one of the things most OFW are doing with their money. It is the reason why most of them go abroad, to give and provide money for their family. They want to give it all in the point they cannot save anymore for themselves. It is not bad to give, it it is really good so you must give it as much and as I long as you can but you must not also forget to save some amount for your future.
Maybe we restrict our giving to our family only but you may also give to other people, your church or the community you are living. Giving is like planting a seed today, you can expect a harvest in the future not maybe in the form of money but in other things like respect and love from the people you helped.
These financial principles hopefully will give you some insights on how to deal with your money. It is better to use money in the right way than just spending it in meaningless stuffs. I wish this article helps you in some ways. If you like this article, follow me in Facebook and Twitter!