Whether you’re reflecting back on 2019 or looking ahead to 2020, the best time to reflect, re-assess and revive your financial actions for lasting changes is at the start of a new year.
Take a stand for yourself and your money and consider joining a Savings and Credit Co-operative Society (SACCO) for your financial freedom.
SACCOs in Kenya are usually formed and run by members who share a common goal and vision, which means that they are often made up of groups that already work together in a particularly niche industry. The fundamental principle of a SACCO is to save and provide credit facility to its members, so membership is not confined only to the employees of a particular organization.
SACCOs have been a saving grace for millions of Kenyans. No wonder they contribute and estimated 30% of Kenya’s total GDP. They are a reliable source of loans for mid to low-income earners in Kenya, who were once shut out by mainstream banks.
Your main goal should be to achieve financial stability by spending less than you earn and then using the savings to make investments and get ahead. Therefore, joining a SACCO should be top of your list, even before leaving college. Starting early has its perks.
Here are the main advantages of joining SACCOs:
As a SACCO member you are entitled to annual dividends based on your entire savings. As a member you are considered one of the owners of the SACCO, and therefore entitled to benefits. Conduct a bit of market research to find SACCOS with good rates. Dividend rates can be as high as 10-15%.
SACCOs teach you how to commit to savings. As a member you will be required to contribute a predetermined amount of money towards your savings. The best method of doing this is via standing bank order. What you don’t know won’t hurt you as it exits your account, but that dividend cheque will be worth it! Your SACCO savings can go a long way towards saving for business capital, purchasing land or contributing towards a wealth generating investment.
The best part about SACCO savings is the loan system. As a member you stand a chance to get a loan three times the amount of the savings you have. The terms depend on which SACCO you are part of but this is a standard rate. Even better, SACCOs usually have the best – read lowest- interest rates.
Retirement doesn’t need to be a distant, unattainable dream. But don’t have a concrete idea as to where to save? A SACCO is a good starting point towards setting up a nest egg. For example, with a good dividend rate and savings over a long period of time, you can receive enough of a monthly stipend to carry you through after retirement.
Access to housing
Reputable SACCOS acquire land and build houses so that the members can become property owners at very affordable prices. They also offer lower mortgage rates than conventional banks.
If the worst-case financial scenario happens to your SACCO you will only be liable to the extent of your overall contribution. This means that your personal property will be exempt from financial attachments.
On the flip side:
In Kenya there have been many controversial SACCO stories. Life savings have been lost and lives ruined. Before joining a SACCO, ensure that it has been in existence for a long time and has an excellent reputation.
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