Identifying your spending habits can help you save better. Take this quiz to see if you need to curb your expenses or loosen the purse-strings.
1. When it comes to shopping,
A. I need no excuse; it's my favourite sport.
B. I always look for sales or promotional offers.
C. I only shop when I need something.
D. I dislike it, so I usually talk myself out of it.
2. When I receive my paycheque, I
A. Hit the malls and ignore the piled-up bills.
B. Pay only overdue bills and spend the rest.
C. Carefully balance fun and savings.
D. Feel guilty if I spend it on myself.
3. When I get an increment, I
A. Go on a shopping spree.
B. Promise myself, yet again, that I'll budget.
C. Treat myself and allocate the rest to savings.
D. Put it all in savings.
4. My spending style is such that
A. I don't know where all my money goes.
B. I have a good idea of the money in hand, but never let it come in the way of a good spend.
C. Most of my money is allocated beforehand.
D. I keep track of my deposits and investments.
5. According to me, credit cards
A. Get me all I want even if I can't afford it.
B. Help me pick what's worth buying or investing when I don't have enough cash.
C. Should only be used if there's no swiping fee.
D. Are useless, so I prefer debit cards and cash.
6. When I go on a vacation, I like to
A. Pamper myself.
B. Combine pleasure with business.
C. Do it cheaply without missing on fun.
D. Keep the cost low, never mind the quality.
7. When I go out for dinner with friends,
A. I usually fight for the cheque.
B. We pay by turns.
C. I insist that we split the bill evenly.
D. I ask for a separate cheque and don't leave a tip if service charge is included in the bill.
8. Of my total income, I try to save
B. 2 to 3%.
C. 5 to 10%.
D. 15% or more.
9. If I am in a tough financial situation
A. I prefer to borrow and maintain my lifestyle.
B. I cut down on investments and expenses.
C. I prefer to cut my discretionary expenses.
D. I stop borrowing and start saving more.
How did you score?
For every A give yourself 4 points, 3 points for Bs; 2 for Cs and 1 point for each D.
Understanding spending patterns is the key to money management. If you fall in extreme categories, reckless or penny pincher, shift to prudence. Spendthrifts, you can do better.
30-36: Reckless Spender, 24-29: Spendthrift, 16-23: Prudent Spender, 9-15: Penny Pincher