Inflation December stood at 25.5% monthly and economists warn that January could be close to those values. With salaries sailing far behind, purchasing power is constantly decreasing. It is because of that Ámbito put together a list of key tips to try to survive to the brutal price increase. Some of them will seem obvious, others not so much, but it is always good to pay attention to things that we naturalize to do and that can modify our daily life so much.
Credit card: responsible use and in our favor
In times of high inflation The credit card It can be a double-edged sword. But before talking about the benefits of using it, we will say how We should NOT use plastic. The credit card is not an extension of our salary. It is important to know the purchasing power we have and try to moderate consumption. Otherwise we can use the card to spend more than we earn and We will generate a ball of debt. You should also avoid paying only the minimum at all costs. The minimum amount is generally equivalent to 5% or 10% of the debt and the rest is made up of interest, commissions and taxes. If this practice is repeated, canceling the debt will be practically impossible.
Now let’s see how we can use it to our advantage. In high inflation contexts, interest-free or very low interest installments are very convenient. The Government launched the program “Simple Fee” with financing in 3 and 6 installments, with a rate equivalent to 85% than that used as a reference for fixed terms by the Central Bank. At the moment it is the lowest on the market.
It is also important to know perfectly the discounts that banks promote. (the days when discounts apply to payments on supermarket purchases or fuel, for example). If we do not manage to pay the full amount, it is important to know that we can pay the amount we want and at the time of the month we want.
Let’s suppose We have $200,000 to pay this month and we can only cover $100,000 We can pay that amount and interest will only be charged on half of it. Besides, cKnowing the closing date is key. We can take advantage of the closing of the card to make important expenses immediately after that key date and get the longest period of time possible until paying the first installment.
Advance expenses and look for offers
Before the constant markup of prices. It will be important analyze and compare prices in supermarkets and, if necessary, advance, when possible, wholesale purchases. Maybe several family members or friends can get together and buy in quantity. bags of vegetables or directly to producers or factories. Today it is not so complex and can be programmed online. It is also necessary to be aware of spending what is strictly necessary.
A key tip when shopping at the supermarket will be review prices and compare brands through values per liter, per kilo, per m2, etc.
Maximize the effectiveness of services
Other important increases are happening in prepaid services, car insurance, internet, telephonyetc. It is important, especially in the provision of services, to communicate with the supplier companies and ask for improvements. More than once when calling the internet provider company they offer promotions for 6 or 12 months.
Make your savings profitable with virtual wallets
There are many people who say they cannot save and do not know financial instruments to do so. But leaving the pesos sitting in the savings account all month is a big mistake.
Currently, heVirtual wallets provide the same benefits as a bank account, since they allow you to pay and have money at all times, but with the advantage that they generate a small profitability. So, Ualá, Mercado Pago, Naranja are some of them, and in a way completely free allow generate interest by having the money in the account until you put it to use.
Invest at least part of your salary
For those who want get your money’s worth with a little more complexity can be opened a client account in your own bank or in a stock broker.
This will allow, for example, to acquire MEP dollar or invest in instruments such as Mutual funds. It is not necessary to earn large sums of money to be able to invest in instruments that are very easy to use and that They will provide a profitability that would help not lose against inflation.
Today one of the simplest ways is to put together a UVA fixed term that follows the price of inflation. The minimum term is 180 days. The BCRA allows pre cancel the fixed termthat is, withdraw the money starting on the 30th and with 5 business days notice. However, in the fine print there is a warning that says that much less interest will be paid than agreed.
Be very careful about getting into debt with personal loans
Many times when trying to refinance the debt on a card or when requesting a loan they only notify us of the TNA (Annual Interest Rate) and not he Total Financial Cost (CFT) which is the total value of a credit. This measurement takes into account the interest rate and also the different expenses linked to the granting and management of the loan or credit. Only the CFT will be the one that indicates what will be paid in full for debt financing. It may also be useful the CFTEF (it would be the Total Annual Effective Financial Cost).
I made a budget
In a context with high inflation It is very complex to make a monthly budget that is successful, since it will vary from month to month. There you have to determine our income and our fixed expenses, month by month. That will determine the money availableFor example, for variable expenses (birthdays, gifts, etc.) and see the best way to deal with them. Then there are different ways to measure how our budget is set up: for example the rule 50-30-20: 50% for fixed expenses inside and outside the home (housing, gasoline, taxes, etc.), 30% for variable expenses of the month (outings, vacations, etc.), and 20% for savings and payment of debts.
Avoid ant expenses
It is called “ant expense” to all those expenses that were not planned and do not correspond to fixed expenses. For example, I left work, went to the pharmacy to buy some medicine and while I was at it I brought some nail polish. It’s a purchase I wasn’t planning on making, but I finally made it. Thus, from taking a Uber, a coffee on the go, order delivery because I was late, stop by a kiosk and buy sweets, every day we can make small, avoidable expenses. Ant expenses can take up to 20% of your salary. To “cure yourself from them” it only takes a couple of days keeping track of what I spend without thinking I will be able to take into account the amount of money I could use for other things.
Review outstanding debts and interest charges
Many times we leave for another time unpaid taxes, debts with service providers, finesetc. but in contexts of high inflation and deregulation of economic activity This is a big mistake. You have to keep in mind What is the current situation, what debts we have, and how we could eventually cancel them. In some cases you can request a payment plan, moratoriums, etc. Letting them run is a serious mistake and they will eat us alive.
Always have an emergency fund
An emergency fund is a reserve of cash that is only saved for financial crises or emergencies. Some common examples are fixing the car or some household appliance or some unexpected debt that was left unnoticed. Common emergency funds must cover at least 6 months of fixed expenses. It is advisable to do them in foreign currency or in some financial instrument that allows you to obtain the money in no more than 48 hours (such as a Common Investment Fund).
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