Officially the 50th blog, **UPDATE** 49th now as I’ve had to delete an old problematic one! I even deleted a couple of my early blogs cos’ the jokes didn’t fly like I’d want ‘em to; quality over quantity most definitely. I’ve also got a couple of unreleased blogs sitting in the archives, Lord knows if I’ll have the appetite to release those. Anyways, for this long overdue milestone how about we discuss something we can all relate to; money and how to go about stacking some. As you may know from my previous blogs, I jumped on the property ladder over two years ago… and I regret not milking that achievement ever since. Regardless, the experience taught me a lot about saving and the unknowing techniques I used to do so. Now for those advanced money making schemes you might need to join a pyramid scheme or have a sit-down dinner with Pastor Tobi and pick his brains, my expertise only goes so far.
First things first, you gotta get your money up bro. I know this sounds obvious, but you can have all the goodwill in the world but saving on a £40k salary is far easier than a £20k one. Now before I get those “Hey bro, long time” messages, I’m not suggesting I get paid a lot *wink wink*, but intuitively earning more makes the process a whole load easier. The best ways of doing so? Get a side hustle, turn your hobby into an income, negotiate your salary at work or worst case, don’t be afraid to job-hunt elsewhere. You have no loyalty to your company; they need an FTE and you need to get paid. When you get a new job, some of your colleagues won’t even donate to your leaving gift and will feel no way about it. They’ll come into work on Monday angry that your handover doc was trash. With that aside though, what are your motivations for saving? Saving for the sake of saving will have you periodically withdrawing from your ISA account. Having an objective is important ‘cos you’ll be able to clearly define what success looks like.
So here’s me with my Project Management hat on *clears throat* – your savings goal should hit these four main criteria;
- Be Realistic; If you earn £25k a year, saving £20k ain’t gonna happen unless you don’t plan to pay tax as well as eating bread and Space Raiders for lunch & dinner. Set yourself a target which is actually achievable.
- Be Specific; “I want to save a lot of money” is not a goal ‘cos ‘a lot’ is relative dependant on your situation. Be clear with your goals, no one likes a moving target.
- Be Measurable; How will you evidence that you’ve actually achieved your goal? If you’re saving for a car but haven’t even saved petrol money, this measurement is a calamity.
- Be Timely; Time is money! Goals without deadlines will always get shoved to the bottom of the pile. Give yourself an end date to work towards.. and be flexible cos hey, life happens.
Also don’t save what’s left after spending, spend what’s left after saving! What that means is make your savings a priority and go nuts with the rest. After a while you’ll get so accustomed to living on less that it won’t even feel like you’re actively saving. Of course discipline is key; unfortunately having fun is a cash-loss so you’ll need to prioritise things. Broke-ness will never be envied by the stringent! As long as you’re not doing accountant whenever you’re splitting meals at restaurants, you shouldn’t feel a way about being disciplined. Most importantly for me though is that this shouldn’t feel like a burden; ultimately money is there to be spent and enjoyed. Any process that you’re absolutely dreading probably won’t yield positive results. Proactive money management defo isn’t for everyone but building for the future is an idea I can get behind!