Trying to save for something I actually want.

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by Hummer, Dec 2, 2007.

  1. Hummer macrumors 65816

    Hummer

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2006
    Location:
    Queens, New York NY-5
    #1
    I currently work two jobs and I find both paychecks being gone in no more than 3 days. Now I don't buy a lot of stuff like electronics and clothes, but I find my money "disappearing" (I actually spend it, but don't know where it all goes). I figure I pay for transportation, food and more food each day, but thats about it.

    I'm wondering how I could force myself to save. I'm trying to buy a Macbook or an iPhone. I should have enough money to buy an iphone in less than 2 weeks and a Macbook in a little over a month, but being broke 3 days after receiving my paycheck doesn't make me too hopeful about buying one.
     
  2. Big-TDI-Guy macrumors 68030

    Big-TDI-Guy

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2007
    #2
    401k

    One of those check-cards that automatically round up and dump the change into your savings. (credit cards do this too - but that's a BAD habit to get into)

    Direct Deposit with a split or percentage going into a savings account.

    Post-It Notes reminding yourself how poor you are - in common places.
     
  3. ejb190 macrumors 65816

    ejb190

    #3
    For a week or two, take a notepad around with you and write down everything you spend money on. At the end of the week, total it up in categories like transportation, food, entertainment, etc. Setting a budget is not easy and sticking with it is even harder, but in the end it could make or break you financially.
     
  4. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2006
    #4
    well lets see we know you live at home so you do not have bills to pay like the rest of us. Something I would do when I was your age was I had a cup I put money into. That cup was my savings so to speak and I would not touch it.

    I believe you are under the age of 18 so that would prevent you from opening up a bank account in just your name.

    Like others have said take a note pad and write down what you blow you money on.

    You should not have the expensive the rest of us have. Food is covered by your parents. Gas I could see taking some of your funds. But out side of that what the hell do you have that is sucking down your money.
     
  5. mcarnes macrumors 68000

    mcarnes

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2004
    Location:
    USA! USA!
  6. CalBoy macrumors 604

    CalBoy

    Joined:
    May 21, 2007
    #6
    I'm curious about this. OP, are you over 18?

    If so, ask your parents to help you open a CD. Even with declining rates, the locked nature of a CD will force you to save money.
    Or, use a database program (NeoOffice has one) :p Seriously, it's really easy to get organized that way, and see where your money is going.

    Assuming that the OP is under 18, I agree. While he probably doesn't need too much gas (NYC subway), he probably does need subway money and some other discretionary funds (food, movies, etc). If it comes down to it, just stop buying one item per week. Cutting out a coffee even twice a week can save you loads of money.
     
  7. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2004
    Location:
    St. Louis, MO
    #7
    Do you have a savings account? If not, get one. I don't know about others, but I've found myself to be a heck of a lot less likely to spend money in my savings account instead of checking. Plus, it's a good idea anyways, go with an online savings account and you can earn somewhere between 4-5% interest, whereas you're lucky if you earn any interest at all with checking.

    Plus, it helps having your checking and savings at different banks. My checking is US Bank, my savings is HSBC Online, so transfers take a few days to go through. When I also had my savings at US Bank, transfers were immediate. So then, on a whim, I could login to online banking, transfer money into checking, and go buy something. Not so anymore, which helps too.

    Oh, also, you mentioned you spend it on food. Is this eating out or food for home? Because if it's the former, that adds up real quickly. If you're buying food on your lunch hour, stop. Instead, buy some food at the store, like deli meats or whatever you fancy, make your lunch at home, and bring it. What you spend one day eating out can be enough to last you a week if you make your own and bring it.

    And finally, get some sort of program to track your finances so you know what's being spent where. There are millions of those programs out there. The only thing worse than spending money you're trying to save is not knowing where you spent it.
     
  8. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #8
    Who is your savings account with? ...You're getting about 5% more than my savings account. :D :eek:
     
  9. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2004
    Location:
    St. Louis, MO
    #9
    HSBC Online

    It's online only, so all transfers are electronic deposits/withdrawals from your bank account (or you can mail in a check, which seems like a pretty bad idea in case it gets lost). No paper statements. No brick-and-mortar locations for you to go to. But I've never found any of those drawbacks to be a problem, especially taking the interest rate into account. If I have cash or checks I want to deposit into the savings, I just put them in checking and transfer them online. You can request an ATM card in case you need quick cash from your savings, but then you have to pay fees on the ATM transaction (unless you have an HSBC ATM near you).

    I really wish I did it sooner....with my old US Bank savings account, I was making less than 1% interest (WAY less, I don't remember exactly...might've been .0something%), and I had a large amount of money in there for a few years. Now, I think it's 4.5% and I'm making around 30 bucks a month in interest from what I have in there.
     
  10. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #10
    Oh, I see. I've heard people mention other similar online accounts, but I just can't bring myself to trust them.

    Call me old school, but I just need a bank with doors and walls, with a personal banker who can help me, just in case. ...Even though Wells Fargo is probably just placing my money in a HSBC account and collecting my interest. :D
     
  11. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2004
    Location:
    St. Louis, MO
    #11

    None of that's bothered me at all really. I was weary at first, like you mentioned, the trust thing, but I figured that HSBC is a huge company and I heard good reviews from others, so I don't think they're going to screw me over. I've only set foot in US Bank (where my checking account is) once in the past couple years for something other than using the ATM, and that was only because the ATM was out of envelopes for deposits. So the lack of personal bankers, etc, from HSBC didn't bother me.
     
  12. Hummer thread starter macrumors 65816

    Hummer

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2006
    Location:
    Queens, New York NY-5
    #12
    I do have an account, but its a GreenDot savings account which doesn't equal much savings as they take out over 7 bucks a month in fees for nothing. Aka if I left any money in there to sit it would run out regardless if I spend it or not because they'll just keep taking funds as long as my account is open well into the negative balance. I do want a better kind of account, but I'm not sure how I'm able to open some other kind of account with the convenience of doing it myself. I am only 17.
     
  13. taylorwilsdon macrumors 68000

    taylorwilsdon

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2006
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #13
    Go to your local Wells Fargo, BOA, etc and ask if they can set you up with a hybrid checkings/savings. Those allow you to tie a savings account to your checking and that might allow you to save your money better.
     
  14. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #14
    Where do your parents bank? Many banks have free savings accounts for minors who have parents at the same bank.
     
  15. Hummer thread starter macrumors 65816

    Hummer

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2006
    Location:
    Queens, New York NY-5
    #15
    My parents bank at Citibank.
     
  16. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2006
    #16
    close out the account. 7 bucks in fees and you are having trouble keeping money in there. Go to a credit Union they are so much better. Better interest rates, less in fees. hell most of them have zero fees. The Credit union I am with does not charge me a penny in fees and I have 100 in savings and checking will be between 100-900 depending on the time of the month (parents 800 month "Allowance"*) In the past it was giving me 1-2% on my saving compared to well fargos .2%. I might like to point out that the credit union had less than 1/2 in saving than I had in well fargo at the time.

    It is really all about figuring out what extra crap you are buying every month. I had to cut a lot of corners this semester in school and I had to cut the fat so to speak out of my expenses. I started looking for things that I was spending extra money on and it is amazing how easy a fair amount out of my monthly cost. Eating fast food less, reduce my coffee house visits, do not buy candy and coke (those really do add up fast). Now yes I still eat out from time to time but I reduced how often I did it. Transportation might be a locations you can cut. I do not pay for my gas out of that 800 so it not a place for me to cut corners. For me personally I am pretty much down to the end of my funds because over the past 4.5 years.

    I recommend you get some money into savings because I promise you that you will drain it in college over time because it does not get refilled as often. My savings started at 3kish 4.5 years ago and has been going down ever since. The limited money I got from my parents only slowed the bleed but I still am pretty much out of money. I had my parents help me out a bit more this year taking on more of my expenses to slow the bleed of funds even more. Next month I am going to be borrowing about 2 grand from my parents to cover me in getting me moved and when my first pay check comes in.


    *Before some one screams about my allowance that 800 is cover my rent food and bills for the month. I am a college student so it really it is not that much money.
     
  17. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #17
    I'm sure CitiBank offers a minor account (in one form or another). Just call up their 800 number and ask, or go with your parents next time they visit a branch and speak with one of the tellers, who will most likely direct you to a banker (or you may need to setup an appointment) .

    Your parents may have to sign as custodians to the account, but assuming you trust them, and they trust you it shouldn't be a problem (besides, it's not that easy to overdraw a savings account).
     

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