Kakebo, the centenary Japanese method that can help you save up to 35% of your salary

Saving is one of those purposes that one does, generally, every time we receive the salary. And we often fail: either we do not save at all or we do it to a lesser extent than desired.

All in spite of the fact that there are different methods and techniques.

The Japanese use a tool that helps them in the task: the kakebo, which requires a certain methodology, but does not need many resources: just a notebook, something to write about and, yes, perseverance and willpower.

They say that the person who saves is not the one who spends the least, but the one who spends wisely. So whether you are a good administrator or rather those who find it hard to make ends meet, here you can discover a new way to at least try to increase your savings.

The kakebo (pronounced “kakiboh”) is the Japanese word for book of household accounts and its origin dates back to 1904, according to Fumiko Chiba, author of Kakeibo: The Japanese art of saving money.

Chiba tells in his book that the ideologist of this method was Hani Motoko, considered the first woman journalist in Japan, who wanted to find a way for wives to manage the family economy efficiently.

“Although Japan is a traditional culture in many ways, kakebo was a liberating tool for women, because it gave them control over financial decisions,” writes Chiba in his work.

Today, despite the fact that there are already a multitude of applications in the market with which you can control your income and expenses from your cell phone, these particular account books are still marketed in Japan.

They are usually sold at the beginning of each year and, according to Chiba, they are quite popular.

The method
The task can be quite laborious, especially at the beginning, but this also lies in its success, experts say.

First you must record your daily expenses (or weekly, as you find most comfortable) in different categories. For example: income (salary, income, pensions); essential expenses (housing, transportation, food, home services and medicines); leisure (restaurants, shopping, gym, etc) and extras (gifts, repairs, travel).

You can establish how many categories you need and also use different colors, to make it more visually appealing. At the end of the month, it’s a matter of subtracting: income minus expenses. Simple, is not it?

But it does not end here, because kakebo is more than controlling what you spend, but learning to improve your finances.

The balance
The philosophy behind the use of kakebo is to put the emphasis on things that can not be dispensed with and learn to get rid of those that are not an elementary expense.

To do this, when it is time to evaluate how much, how and how we have spent the money, we must take stock by answering four key questions:

How much money have you saved?
How much money would you have liked to save?
How much money are you really spending?
What would you change next month to improve?

Proponents of this method say that the fact that this is a manual method, Chiba says in his book, makes you more aware of what you spend money on and forces you to think about what your goals are so that your savings will be more effective. . The savings margin, he writes, can reach up to 35% of your income.

Would you dare to try?

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