While the Batas Kasambahay provisions that an employer cannot meddle with how the maid spends his or her earnings, it won't hurt if you – the employer – would teach the helpers to save. If possible, you impart such important lesson to her as soon as you pick her up from the maid agency. Saving is essential because it or the lack of it impacts the future. In fact, it is the difference between living comfortably when you retire and living miserably and depending on others for sustenance. That's not how you want your staffers to end up, right? So, here's how.
1) Set savings goal
Before you may encourage them to save, it would be best to determine what their savings goals are if they have any. By this time, they might not realize that they have those, but a conversation with them about their future plans would reveal what they are striving for financially. For instance, for a house helper who is also a mother, she would normally want to send her kid(s) to school. The savings goal, therefore, is to save for education. The bottom-line is if they are aware of their short-term and long-term goals and priorities, it would be second nature for them to save.
2) Pay yourself first
We cannot emphasize this enough. You need to teach your house staffers the importance of paying their selves first in the form of savings since they are the ones doing all the hard work. They deserve a portion of what they are actually earning. Let's say, one housekeeper earns Php1,500 every 15th of the month. Encourage her to save the 10% (Php150) before she sets something aside for expenses and padala. That's Php300 per month or Php3,600 per year. It may not be a lot of money, but if she uses it wisely, it may double in due time (i.e. investment, time deposit).
3) Advise on options
As noted above, the money won't grow as is. Even if your maid put their money in the bank, the return that it may incur will be very little and may not be enough. Why don't you educate them about their savings options? For instance, the Social Security System offers the SSS-PESO Fund on top off the regular contributions. PESO stands for Personal Equity and Savings Option wherein enrollees can invest a minimum of Php1,000 (maximum of Php100,00 annually). As an investment fund, the money grows. This is just one of the several financial instruments out there.
Then again, all you can do as an employer is to encourage them to save, not force them. The best way is to be their role model. Actions are more powerful than words, and more often than not, it is the act that inspires the people around you and not necessarily what you tell them to do or not to do. After all, if your housekeeping staff will realize the value of saving through your example, it would be easier for them to do the same.