I heard someone say that, and the only analogy I could find that did it justice is the following (I stole it from Reddit):
The house was in great shape, except the kitchen didn’t have a floor and there were no plans or intentions to fix it. If you’re fine eating take out all the time, there’s not an issue, but if you like to cook, then that’s a deal breaker for you.
Use a Piggy Bank to Save if you have to!
If you don’t think you can save, you need to find a way into tricking yourself into doing it, or you are doomed to failing in your personal finance life.
I did make some suggestions (but remember how much Free Advice is worth as well):
- If your employer allows you to deposit to different accounts (with your pay cheque), put money away in a “secret account” that is hard to get the money out. Many folks I know do this and it works, as long as you don’t “raid” the secret account for some Mad Spending.
- You can do the same thing with your bank, and shuffle moneys on pay-day, so that you aren’t aware of it, to save money behind your own back. The same caveats about not using the savings account as a spending spree.
- CSBs can be used in the same way, and they are at least hard to cash out right away (lousy return, but at least the money is safe).
- Stock purchase plans from your employer is another good place to hide money, but never get too heavily vested in your employer, either.
If you don’t like saving, find a way to fool yourself into doing it (or marry someone who saves well, and put them in charge of your money).
Are there other ways to fool yourself into saving money?
After a lovely Thanksgiving weekend, as we dropped one of my daughters off at school, my son saw one of my daughter’s university buddies playing Guitar Hero on a PS/2 (evidently at University, the kids “rough it” by using 1 generation back technology), and my son was enthralled by the site of this game. His hand eye co-ordination was such that he couldn’t get the hang of the guitar, however, he remembered that we had a PS/2 in our basement, collecting dust, and I was ordered to set it up for him (well, it sounded like an order, I think he said please).
Previously Enjoyed Toys
Setting up the game was easier than I remember, as the TV we use for my son had a spare AVI port (you know that old Red White and Yellow cable we used to use on tube tvs?) and for the rest of the day my son was enjoying Simpson’s Road Rage (although he likes to play Air Guitar Hero (you walk around with the “guitar” acting like you are playing the game).
This all got me thinking that with my son, and how he has had many regifted toys over his life (he has Teletubbies, Tickle Me Elmo and a Tutter from his sisters and many other older toys) and seems no worse for wear for me not spending many dollars on toys. I remember the amount of pain my wife went through to get those toys new (the Tickle Me Elmo craze was a scary time), and I am happy that they can actually be enjoyed again.
You do realize that Christmas is coming in a while, are you going to buy your kids or grandkids a bunch of toys, that may end up locked in a closet one day? What if you put some money in an RESP for them, or in trust for when they get older? Does old money get locked in a closet ?