Bonus—the most awaited and likable word every holiday, 13th, 14th and even 15th month of the year. Most companies tend to give bonus depending on the employee’s performance. Usually, the bonus can be half of your monthly salary or can be more than a month of your salary, congrats and lucky you if that is your case.
And if you’ve had the good fortune of a bonus, that means you have put in a lot of good and hard work for you to earn it.
While it is tempting to splurge on the newest iPhone, the great big sale or anything that is “fun,” spending your bonus on the things that give you a short-term happiness isn’t the smartest way to handle it. Sure, you deserve to unwind and reward yourself for your extra hard work, you can still do that but with precautions. You don’t want to blow your money away and ask yourself at the end of the day “where’d all my money go?” right?
So to help you out, here are some of the things you could (and should) do with your bonus:
1. PAY YOUR DEBTS
The very first thing you must do with your bonus is to pay your credit card debt or any other debts which holds interest rates. Or, you could pay it off entirely.It may feel less thrilling than investing, but it simply doesn’t make sense to invest your money while you are paying interest at the same time, because the interest you’re paying is almost certainly more than the rate of returns. So, put that money where it’s needed the most.
2. BUILD AN EMERGENCY FUND
You see, life’s little surprises are expensive. What if your car broke or water pipe has holes or… you don’t want to go back to credit card debt after you’ve paid it, do you?So having an emergency fund is a must! Experts say that it is safe and smart to have at least three to six months’ worth of savings.
3. MAKE YOUR MONEY MOVE
If you are already debt-free, now is the time to make your money keep moving. You can put your bonus in a time deposit in any bank of your preference. Say, you deposit 10,000 pesos and the bank will give you perhaps, 1,000 pesos every month. Multiply it to 12 months and there you have it. However, the catch here is, you can’t touch your money for a period of time. It may not sound enticing among the others but at least it’s growing and you’re not doing anything. Besides, where can you get 12,000 pesos that easy, right?Another thing you can do is to invest it to a business or stocks. Just look for a good financial advisor to help you out. But always be cautious and smart in choosing the person who will handle your investments. The most important factor here to be successful is trust and relationship with the financial advisor.
4. BE COMMITTED TO YOUR INVESTMENTS
The move doesn’t stop in just investing. The next step to keep your money growing is to be committed to your investments. Just because you have your financial advisors doesn’t mean they will do all the work. They are just advisors, you are the primary key to take action.Invest regularly. Deposit every paycheck. Make it a routine so it will become your habit. You will be surprised at how your money has grown if you’re committed to it.
5. FUND A COLLEGE SAVINGS ACCOUNT FOR YOUR KID(S)
If you have kids and haven’t started college yet, this is a great way to start with the tertiary process. Start saving for their future.
6. SAVE IT FOR BIGGER GOALS
If you’re planning to buy a house, car, graduate school or even a grandiose vacation in the future, then save your bonus for these!The best way to prepare for these expenses is to create savings goals. Months or years from now, you will be glad you did it.7. SHARE THE LOVE TO CHARITYAs the saying goes… it is better to give than to receive. Mission for a good cause is a noble thing do. Use your blessings to be a blessing to others.8. HAVE FUNContrary to what was said above, having fun using your bonus is not a bad thing as long as you are on the right track. If you have been following a strict budget for quite some time and have been responsible enough to prioritize the needs over the wants, then maybe this is the time that you enjoy the fruits of your labor.Have an expensive dinner; buy yourself the dress you’ve been eyeing on ever since; get that sleek wrist watch; or travel to your dream destination, but just a reminder, do it responsibly and not regularly. Remember, live within your means.