Hi everyone!! This is an exciting week for me because today I post the last piece in my four-week series “Money Solutions”. If you have been following by now you should know how to “Get Out of Debt for Good!“, know how much money you are spending “Do You Know How Much Money You Really Spend?” and the difference between “Balance Transfers VS Debt Consolidation Loans“. This last week is about ‘Paying yourself first’!
OK – so you may ask what is Dalba talking about this week? What does she mean pay yourself first? This is a concept that has been around for a while (I can’t take credit for it!). It means to save money before you start you do anything else with it. Let me explain further – paying yourself doesn’t mean that you set aside a certain amount of money to go spend it on yourself. What it means is that you are setting aside money for your future. Whether your plans are to buy property or to invest in your retirement (those are just two examples), paying yourself first helps you to make your goals come to fruition.
To achieve this set a certain amount of your income the same day you get paid before you spend your discretionary money. I speak more about discretionary income in my post “Do You Know How Much Money You Really Spend“. Commonly people spend money and see what’s left over and that’s what they save… doing this would mean that you pay yourself last. The sooner you get started to save the better off financially you will be in the long run. I don’t know how many times I tell myself that if I would have had this concept down in my twenties that I would probably have a nice nest egg set aside! I have children and my husband and I make sure to give them money advice NOW! Things that we wish we would have known that now we pass on to them.
If saving money first seems hard to you at first (I know we all have so many bills to pay) consider starting small. $10 per paycheck is a start. Set up direct deposit so the money is taken before is hits your regular account that you usually use to pay bills from. If you are the type of person that is tempted to spend your savings as well consider opening an account at a totally different bank that you have little access to, and have the money sent to that account. Look for a bank that does not have a branch close by and that is not linked to your current account. Gradually increase your savings. Whenever you get a raise consider putting that money into savings in that way you don’t even feel the difference because it’s money that you didn’t have before. Lastly don’t forget to invest in a retirement account (this is another way of paying yourself first). If your employer offers a retirement plan sign up, especially if they match contributions.
Thank you so much for reading!