“Did youth but know what age would crave, many a penny youth would save.”
This is the motto carved in stone above the entrance door of a Savings-Banks in Leeds. When we are young, it is hard to imagine what we shall feel like, and what we shall want, when we are old. But if we could, we should be careful, while we are able to work and earn money, to put something away for our old age. To save requires imagination; thrift means foresight.
Thrift also means self-denial. Our natural inclination is to satisfy our present wants and indulge every passing desire. People with unlimited incomes may afford to do this, but they are very few. The incomes of most of us are very limited; and unless we are very firm with ourselves, shall spend all we earn as soon as we get it. It takes a good deal of strength of will to deny ourselves things we badly want now, in order to save up for a rainy day.
Advantages of saving:
Savings-banks are established to encourage us to provide for sickness and old age. They do this, first, by keeping our money safe for us. To keep large sums of money in the house is risky, but a bank is well-guarded, and will not lose our money. Secondly, it rewards us for saving by giving us interest on the money it borrows from us. If you keep 100 INR in a drawer and don’t touch it, it will still be only 100 INR at the end of ten years; but if you put it into a savings-bank at 4 per cent interest and leave it there, at the end of ten years it will have grown to about 150 INR.
Lastly, if you keep your money in the house, you will be tempted to spend it. When you want something very much, it is so easy to go to your desk and take money out of your savings, promising yourself to put it back later. More often or not, you do not put it back; and your savings gradually disappear. But if your savings are in a bank, you will think twice before you draw any out. There is too, a certain pride in watching your bank account grow; and this helps you to make still greater efforts to save more.
What should you do?
If you want to save, you must have some system in the management of your monthly income. First, buy the necessaries of life, such as food, clothing, fuel, shelter. Next, put away all you can spare as savings. Last, if there is anything over, you may spend something on luxuries. But always make sure of the savings first.