In A Recession, The Wise Gets More For Less
Binta Ali (not a real name) is 36 years old. She is a mother and a businesswoman. When the recession started last year, she did what any wise Nigerian would do. She cut back on her expenditures and learnt how to survive the recession.
Having cultivated a good saving habit, which reduced her spending by more than 50 percent, she was better poised for an adjustment to the recession and, while others were weighed down by it, she thrived.
The ups and downs of life are not limited to individuals alone; a country’s economy can also have its own boom and burst cycles, and it is your responsibility to do everything you can to ensure that you thrive, irrespective of the state of the economy.
Recession generally affects everyone in a country, alongside its negative impacts on the economy. This in turn comes with ripple effects of unpleasant outcomes and implications. But, here are some steps Binta took in order to not only survive with her son, but also to thrive in the midst of the economic downturn.
She cut back on energy expenditure
According to an advocate for steady and sustainable power supply in Nigeria, Mr. Festus Mbisiogu, “Nigerians spend over N150 billion to generate their own electricity for office and home use annually.” This is in addition to the bills from the distribution companies.
To reduce this cost exposure, Binta decided to regulate when and how long she powers her generating set when the public supply of electricity is disrupted. She also cut down the work hours to ensure they burn less fuel on power generation. In addition, she changed her electric lightings to energy saving bulbs and ensured that only one air-conditioning appliance was switched on at a time.
She cut down food cost by buying food in bulk
By buying her food in bulk, she was able to purchase at a wholesaler’s bargain. It also eliminated the urge to buy at a whim and encouraged home cooking. She and her family now depend on delicious home-cooked food, which is generally cheaper because it affords her the opportunity to cook on a budget. For storage, she fries her meat and fish products, boils her vegetables such as tomatoes and pepper and keeps other farm produce such as yam and potatoes in an aerated area.
She reduced her telephone cost
Binta also understood that voice calls are more expensive than short message service (SMS). Hence, she opts to chat or send messages rather than engaging in long voice calls. A telephone conversation may drag beyond your intended time, but you are in control of SMS messages.
She insured her assets
During recession, the price of goods and services experience a major spike. In some cases, crime rate may also record an unfortunate increase, as those with criminal tendencies but limited economic opportunities turn to the underworld. Consequently, there is likelihood that an individual may fall victim to a case of crime and lose priced assets to theft. Unfortunately, the cost of replacing such assets becomes unbearable or completely out of the individual’s reach, considering the dire economic realities. Binta understood that it is during periods like this that you need to leave the risk of theft and other eventualities to the insurance companies.
So she insured her cars, her home and office against burglary and fire outbreaks. But, as a smart and financial-savvy woman, Binta got an insurance coverage for the vehicles, home and office assets under a multiple cover policy on a single premium.
She chose L-HAPPy (Leadway Household, Automobile, Personal accident Policy), which combines your comprehensive motor insurance with property – rented or owned – occupier liability and personal accident cover into a single product. With L-HAPPy, your vehicles are covered against theft, accidental damages, third party liability, injuries or death arising from motor accident, while your properties are covered against damages from fire, theft and natural disasters such as flood etc. The benefits also include legal liabilities for injuries or death of a visitor at your premises.
With this policy Binta is hopeful that, no matter what happens even in this recession, she and her son are covered from any sudden financial loss. Even with all the cut backs we undertake to survive in a recession, it would not be enough when we cannot protect the things we love.
To find out how you can get the L-HAPPy policy, please call (01) 2800 700, or 2800 701, 08129997070 or send an email to Lcs@leadway.com for more details.