Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Pay yourself first -- or you won't

You've heard before about how one of the easiest things to do to change your finances for the better is set up an automatic savings program. It doesn't matter if it's as little as 10%, the point is by automatically deducting money from your paycheque as soon as it comes in, you won't have time to spend it, and you learn to live on the balance.

I've had an ASP going for about as long as I've had this blog, and it's developed into a nice tidy sum by now. But a few weeks ago, I cancelled it since I was going to be having larger-than-usual expenses (what with moving and going on vacation and all)

Just as it's amazing how fast your savings will grow by virtue of an ASP, so have I learned how quickly they will flatline when you don't. My expensive time is coming to an end so I'll be setting up another one, but it's really surprising to see how my savings pile has done nothing over the last little while -- even while I have some excess cash lying around in my checking account.

It's a cliche, but it works. Pay yourself first.

Even Ron Popeil knows you're better
off when you set it and forget it...


nancy (aka money coach) said...

I would go further, and say it doesn't matter even if it's not a fraction of the 10% target. When I started saving many years ago, it felt completely counter-intuitive: I could barely cover my basic needs. But I did the classic $25 per month, and something in my psyche slowly changed for the positive. I found I was able to increase it, after a number of months. Seeing it grow motivated me to increase it yet again. So even if it feels silly because it's so little, I say, go for it. Full stop.

FourPillars said...

Great Ron Popeil reference - I had no idea who he was but thanks to Google & Wikipedia, now I know.