Five points that prove why it pays to be more financially ‘madiskarte’
If there is one unique trait that Filipinos have, it is being “madiskarte”. Even amidst challenges, we are creative in finding opportunities to learn new skills, survive, and improve our lives. However, being madiskarte should also mean being savvy about managing our money and making smart financial. Financial literacy is all about having the know-how to produce the most beneficial financial outcome. Once you have this, you will be able to understand the major financial issues most people face including emergencies, debts, investments, and how to properly handle them.
In the Philippines, financial literacy remains low at two percent according to a survey done by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP)*. In another study conducted by the World Bank, states that 20 million Filipinos save money, but not all of them have bank accounts.
To help and assist every Filipino to be ‘madiskarte’ money-wise, Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. (RCBC) launched DiskarTech. Touted as the first Taglish financial inclusion super app, DiskarTech offers in sachet format, all the vital services needed by “unserved” and “underserved” consumers, especially those without bank accounts.
During this Covid-19 crisis, when paradigm shifts are the new normal particularly in the way we handle our finances, DiskarTech is a welcome addition to the suite of financial mobile apps in the market. It is a tool to help you become more financially savvy or “madiskarte.”
How can one be more financially “madiskarte?”
Learn the art of budgeting. The first step in handling your personal finances is budgeting. It involves money management and understanding how much is coming in, and how much money is going out. When you master budgeting, you will develop the ability to control your expenses instead of your expenses controlling you. Most of us live from paycheck to paycheck because of a gap between the math that says we can afford what we want vis-à-vis what our actual spending capacity is.
Budgeting involves creating a spending plan on a monthly basis. This plan should include all of your basic expenses, bills, and any debts. Categorize your spending into “necessities” and “wants.” Only when you have enough to pay for all the necessary expenses and have put away a certain amount for savings, should you spend on your wants.
Start saving up. Saving up involves setting aside a certain amount of money each month for future expenses. Financial advisors say that each person, whether they have a high-paying job or otherwise, should have savings of at least three to six times their monthly income. Not having one leaves you vulnerable to unfortunate situations that will leave you short of cash to cover the mortgage or rent or put food on the table.
Learn to save early on by starting with a realistic amount, say at P500 per week according to your earnings. Then if you can afford to double the amount after a few months, go ahead, just do whatever is achievable for you. This will provide you a financial cushion that can get you and your family through an illness, injury, job loss, or any other unexpected curveball.
Be smart about debt. Debt is a reality for many and is usually a result of an unexpected circumstance like a sudden illness or unexpected loss of income. If a big portion of your monthly earnings go to the payment of debt, that’s a clear red flag. Remember, a single bad spending decision can haunt and hurt you financially for years. Know the difference between good debt and bad debt. The purchase of a quality property for retirement in the future or a business loan are examples of good debts. But borrowing money to buy the latest “it” bags or shoes that you don’t need, or procuring that newly-launched gadget when you just bought a new one last month—are bad debts.
Even if you earn enough, avoiding bad debt is one of the most critical money habits you should seek to develop. A mountain of seemingly useless consumer debts can be deceptive. They are addictive and feel really good in the short term but can accumulate and balloon to an uncontrollable amount before you know it. Debt is a major roadblock to financial security and having a budget and savings means you can get out of it sooner, rather than later.
Learn the value of insurance. A lot of people view insurance as payment for a bad thing that will not likely happen. But buying insurance should be seen as buying security, paying for peace of mind. We don’t want anything bad to happen, but we cannot be assured that bad things will not come. One way to be prepared is to have insurance. This is not something that will only benefit us, it will also benefit our family or those who depend on us financially. Insurance does not only provide financial protection to us on a personal basis, it can also ensure the longevity and stability of our source of income if purchased for our business.
You don’t need to invest thousands to have insurance. DiskarTech offers affordable insurance packages equal to the value of a cup of coffee or a round trip ticket in any of our public transport. After all, who can put a value on sleeping well at night and not being anxious about what will happen to us should an unexpected event occur?
Invest. Whether it is for a small home-based business, stocks, or a property for future use, it is wise to make investments early. Investing might sound intimidating and complicated but it is simply using your money now to create more money for the future. Remember what we are always told that just having a good income doesn’t make you rich? It’s true, so we need to find ways to have multiple sources of income when we can. It is ideal to understand the meaning of a stand-by or secondary income. If you have developed a shrewdness for budgeting and have enough savings to start investing, just go ahead and invest.
Otherwise, you may take out a loan (consider this a good debt) for this purpose. Investing in health or insurance will protect your assets against events that could eat into your savings. When it comes to property, imagine retiring in a simple home or a piece of land you can turn into a farm in the future. If you want to do all three, you may watch motivational videos in YouTube, listen to podcasts that teach you the basics, or seek advice from trustworthy financial counselors/planners. They can help you take the first step.
RCBC’s DiskarTech Taglish Super App is your new best friend. During these tough times, we need a friend or a ‘kabalikat’, someone who would prod us and motivate us in our journey towards reaching our financial goals. DiskarTech is the perfect partner or “kabalikat” of every “madiskarteng Pinoy”. Being the first Taglish financial inclusion super app, DiskarTech understands the Filipino and offers products and services that are relevant and responsive even to those underserved and unbanked Filipinos trying to get by and survive through the new normal.
This downloadable mobile app allows you to easily open a Basic Deposit Account (without a required minimum amount and maintaining balance, and with a high-interest rate of 3.25% per annum). It facilitates card-less automated teller machine (ATM) withdrawals, as well as cash-out from thousands of partner agents nationwide. Deposits can be made at over 30,000 agent locations nationwide including 7 Eleven and Bayad Center outlets. It likewise allows fund transfers, bills payments, purchase of airtime load and gaming pins, interoperable quick response (QRph) code transfers and payments, purchase affordable insurance, and even Telemedicine, or online medical consultation. More services like loans are also coming soon.
DiskarTech also has #BuhayGinhawa. A goal-oriented savings tool that allows users to set their financial life goals in place by reminding them when to top up their savings to meet short-term and long-term goals, help them budget, and save for future investments. DiskarTech can help empower Filipinos in achieving a lifestyle that is financially balanced, sustainable, and responsible through all its features.
This is the only app launched at the height of the lockdown in July. It is the only app the integrates financial education and digital literacy for Filipinos. BSP Governor Benjamin Diokno said in a Twitter post, “Recent events have forced many of us to the digital realm, financial services included. We can leverage this development to achieve our financial inclusion goals. This is what DiskarTech does as the country’s first Taglish app. It provides sachet banking services to unbanked and underserved Filipinos.” Take the first step towards becoming more financially savvy and “madiskarte” by downloading DiskarTech now!
DiskarTech is a digital product of RCBC. It has merited three global digital awards during the pandemic. It was awarded Best Digital Bank by Asiamoney and Alpha Southeast Asia and by the London-based financial publication The Global Economics Limited for being the Most Innovative Internet Banking Service Provider in the Philippines.
DiskarTech is available for free download via the App Store on iOS devices and Play Store on Android devices. Visit diskartech.ph for more details. Follow the official DiskarTech accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube for updates.
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