Whatever your age, it's easy to feel you never have enough money. And guess what, you'll always feel that way unless you get serious about Saving. Saving is basically the only way to ensure you can afford to buy and do the things you want. Not just now, but in the future too. The sooner you get into the habit of saving, the easier it will become, and the more money you'll have. So you won't need to worry about it so much and that's a relief!
OK, I want to master my money. How do I start saving?
It's much easier to save if you've got something that you want. If you don't have a savings goal, saving can be like running a race with no finish line - boring and pointless!
You can have a couple of savings goals: one might be for something cheap and that you could afford soon; another might be for something much more expensive, that will require you to save for a longer period. Be realistic in what you're aiming for.
My money seems to disappear, so by the end of the week I never have any left to save. What then?
Let's take a guess. Unless your purse is stolen each week, we strongly suspect you spent all that money on yourself. Bet you can't even remember where it all went!
Here's a tip. Get a piece of paper, and write down exactly what you spend it all on. Next to each item, write down the price and whether it is a 'want' or a 'need'. "Want" means that it is something that you don't really have to have and "need" is something that you really have to have. Now add it all up. We reckon you'll be surprised to see where it all goes - more 'wants' than 'needs'!
Now that you've got your Chronic Spender Sheet, get another piece of paper and write down the things you really need to spend money on each week. Now subtract this figure from the amount of money you actually get each week.
Congratulations! You've just created a Budget which is the key to saving. The final figure will be the amount you can afford to bank, and SAVE.
If there's still no money left to save, either you're going to have to make some more decisions about what you spend your money on, or you're going to have to get some more money. Keep reading, we can help with that one too.
Got any other keys to saving?
Yep! Expert savers use a great one called "Paying Yourself First". This means that when you get some money, you bank some of it immediately before you even think about doing anything else with it. So for example, if you get $5 a week pocket money, bank $2 before you even think about how to spend the rest.
My willpower is weak. When I'm in shops I want to buy everything!
You can't be the master of your money if your willpower is weak! Before you lash out with your cash, think hard about whether you really need that item. It can help if you leave the shop and go for a walk to think about it. Maybe give yourself a day or week to think it over.
The more times you make a careful buying choice, rather than on impulse purchase, the smarter a shopper and better saver you'll become.
Why should I deposit my money in the bank, rather than hiding it under my bed?
You obviously don't have a little brother or sister, otherwise you wouldn't ask that question. Seriously, a bank is a much safer place for your money. But more than that, it also pays you interest on your money. That makes your savings grow faster. Furthermore, you are not charged a monthly service fee to have this account and all transactions carried out via ATMs, EFTPOS terminals or Internet Banking are free.
Accelerate your saving
These smart tips can help boost the speed of your saving:
- Make your own gifts - We all love giving and receiving gifts but they can cost heaps. Make your own gifts and cards. Some gift examples for you to make - cakes, photo-frame, jam, chutney, fans, combs, toffees etc. People will appreciate the effort you put into them.
- Junk the Junk - Is spending money on junk food really worth it? Those little treats add up. Even a dollar a day is $30 a month! Save that money and you'll have a healthier body and teeth, and a better bank balance.
- Ditch the arcade - Are you an arcade game junkie? Some kids can easily spend $20 in one quick visit. Imagine how that money could add up in a savings account.
- Keep a money jar - Keep a money jar in your room. Put any loose coins that you earn or find in it. You'll be amazed how much you can save. When your jar is full, put it in the bank.
- Think big - When you've got a big goal in mind, it can be easier to get there. So save for big things and go without some of the little things.
- Picture what you want - Set a goal and cut out a picture of it from a magazine, or print out one from the Net, and stick it on your bedroom wall to encourage you to save.
- Odd jobs - Ask parents and relatives if there are odd jobs you can do to earn extra money. With your parent's permission, ask neighbours. Saving starts with income. So get going and earn some more!
- Wash cars
- Clean windows
- Mow lawns
- Sweep leaves
- Walk a dog
- Baby sit kids
For more information, please call our BSP Customer Contact Centre on 132 888 or (679) 3214 300 or send your query through the Contact Us page.