Raising A Millionaire: Weekly Digest

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Raising A Millionaire: Quote of the Week

"We cannot fail to win unless we fail to try."

  -Tom Clancy

Raising A Millionaire: Article of the Week
The Secret To Saving Money

Saving money is a basic concept of personal financial planning, and key to financial success. Yet many of us don't have a formal savings plan. Without such a plan, the chances of ever saving enough money to meet long-term financial goals or achieve financial security are very slim.

It seems simple. In order to save money, you need to have "extra" cash, right? This is a common misconception. Having a spending plan (aka "budget"), will help you create money for savings. Most of us, by setting spending goals, can manage to save regularly, so if you're tempted to hit your back button because you simply don't have enough money to have a formal savings plan, STOP! This article will tell you the "secrets" to savings.

First, set a few short-term and long-term financial goals to work towards, like a down payment on a car or home.

Include the dollar amount and a time frame for achieving the goal. It's much more motivating to save when you know what you're saving for. And remember, a goal that isn't written down is only a dream.

Set up a separate savings account. If you mingle your savings with your regular checking account, you'll almost certainly dip into your savings and may never pay them back. Having your savings in a separate account is a constant reminder that these funds are earmarked for your future, and watching the balance grow is rewarding and motivating!

If you don't already have a written budget that includes tracking your expenditures each month, begin one now. Whether you make thousands of dollars or hundreds of thousands of dollars a year, you need a budget. Budgeting can be relatively simple and entirely guilt-free.

Decide on a percentage of your gross income to designate as savings. 10% is a good starting point, but if you've developed a budget and have analyzed your spending and you honestly can't find a way to set aside 10% for your future, then start out with 8%, or 5%, or whatever you're able to do with perhaps a little bit of discomfort but without great sacrifice.

If possible, have your employer or your spouse's employer deduct a set amount from your paycheck each pay period and deposit it into your savings account automatically. The old adage "out of sight, out of mind" works well here. Having to transfer money to your savings account is a little like giving someone who is trying to quit smoking a cigarette to carry around in his pocket and expecting him not to light up. Why tempt yourself? Make it easy and increase your chances of success with automatic deposits or transfers.

Whenever unexpected money comes your way, put all or most of it into your savings account. Bonuses, salary increases, tax refunds, rebates, overtime pay, income from hobbies or yard sales and other windfalls can pump up your savings account nicely without requiring additional cutbacks.

If you're forced to dip into your savings for an emergency, consider it a loan which must be paid back in a reasonable period of time, and set up a repayment schedule.

That's all there is to it! The "secret" is that there's no magic involved. The key is to start now and stick to it.

Raising A Millionaire: Other Articles

How Much Do I Need to Save? - A lot of people have heard about the "three to six months of living expenses" rule, but do you know about the exceptions?

Saving Options - Learn about your options: money market accounts, certificates of deposits, Treasuries, bonds, and more.


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