Are You Making Any of These Excuses For Not Saving Money?
Posted by Kristen on January 15, 2014
When the topic turns to saving money, people often have a reason why they are not saving. They may be true or they may just be excuses, but the fact is there is usually an explanation of why it truly isn’t a valid reason. Here are some common reasons people give for not saving.
Excuses For Not Saving Money
- I don’t need to save because I’ll always be working.
That’s great that you have a strong work ethic and believe you’ll always be working and have a job. But unfortunately, things don’t always work out like that. For starters, no matter how much you think you have job security, there is always a chance you can lose your job. If you get sick or injured, you may not be able to work as well. Saving a portion of your check can protect you while you find another job. Some experts say to save six to eight months of your cost of living in an emergency fund in case you lose your job.
- I don’t have extra money to put towards saving.
If you don’t have any extra money, the problem can be deeper than just not saving. A survey on Bankrate.com revealed that 76 percent of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck every month with no room to spare. Take time to evaluate where your money is going every month. Write down everything you are spending money on. Where can you cut back to free up money to put into savings? Can you find ways to save money on food? Can you take the bus to reduce the amount you’re spending on gas? Can you cut back on your cable bill? Try to reduce your electric bill? Even little cut backs can add up to help you start saving. On the flip side, try to think of ways to increase your income. Asking for a raise at work, taking on additional hours, getting a part-time job, taking up a freelance gig, selling belongings you do not use, and doing odd jobs like babysitting, walking dogs, pet care, and so on are just a few ways you can increase your income.
- I’ll save when I make more money.
Some people are always waiting for that next step – getting a better job, landing that promotion, getting a raise. Unfortunately, these things may never come. Don’t wait until you have a bulk of extra money to save. Are You Focused on Today or Tomorrow?
- I’m too young to worry about saving.
Young people think they have their whole lives to worry about saving money. But the younger you start, the better. You’ll start these helpful saving habits young, and they will be easier to stick with as you grow. Plus, your saved money will continue to grow. Ignoring Finances When Young is a Risky Game.
- I’m too old to worry about saving.
If you think it is too late for you, you are wrong. Even if you have had bad spending habits, it is not too late to start a savings account to use when you need. You’ll be surprised how fast that savings can grow if you are dedicated to saving. In addition, you are eligible to Take Advantage of Retirement Catch-Up Contributions.
- But I need this [fill in the blank] purse, vacation, set of golf clubs…
I get it. You work hard at your job, and you want to enjoy the fruits of your labor. Many times people feel like they need to purchase something (or many things) to be happy and that they need it. If you really sat down to evaluate those purchases that you “need”, you may start to realize that they were in fact a want more than a need. Start giving yourself some time to consider the purchase before just pulling out the credit card.
- It’s impossible to save now that I have a kid or kids.
While throwing kids into the mix can make it more difficult to save, it is now more important than ever to have a security fund in order. One mistake that parents can make is valuing the material objects – new toys, clothes, extravagant baby supplies – over financial security. The most important gifts you can give your children are security and parents that aren’t stressed about paying bills every month. Keep toys and all of the extras for kids in a budget each month. Find simple, cheap ways to entertain kids such as going to the park, finding free events, borrowing movies and books from the library, organizing play groups at homes with friends, and using items you already have to make new games and experiences.
- I don’t have anything to save for.
Many times, if people aren’t saving for a house or a wedding, they think they have nothing to save for. The unfortunate truth is that something can happen at anytime – your car breaking down, the heater gets busted at your home, you get into an accident, lose your job, have to pay an unforeseen fee or tax, travel expenses if a loved one gets sick or passes away, and much more. These events are hard enough to deal with, but if you don’t have money put aside, it can get even worse very quickly. On a positive note, there are also wonderful unexpected events – travel expenses to meet a friend’s new baby, attending a destination wedding, and more – that while great, will still cost you.
- I’ll just take out a loan/use credit if I need something.
Why save when you have the cushion of a line of credit? While it could be tempting to just throw items on a credit card, doing so can result in debt that quickly gets out of hand. If you choose not to save and only use a credit card if you need the money, you’ll end up paying much more than you have to because of interest. Not to mention, too much credit card debt can negatively impact your credit score, which can limit your options. A bad credit report or score can cause you to not get approved for a loan on a house, buy a car, rent an apartment, and cause you to get higher interest rates down the line.
What are excuses you hear people say for not saving money? Do you use any excuses yourself?
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Saving is a none issue until I produce more earnings, for the moment at least. Yet I was previously guilty of not saving a penny when I was a few years younger. Now I’m paying that price but at least I’m aware of it.
Here is a reason that you may never have heard: “Saving constitutes operating in lack. When you operate in lack it means that you don’t trust the universe to take care of your needs and wants.”
Yes, someone told me this. Yes, I was stunned and had no words. Yes, I continue to save.
I have a close friend who lost his job in the Recession. I was wondering how he and his family managed to live as if he was still employed for nearly 3 years. He recently told me that they burned through all their savings, including retirement savings, and have $40k in credit card debt. Wow! My wife and I have talked many times about what we’d do if we lost our jobs. We have a year of expenses in our emergency fund that consists of a CD ladder that is paying 2% interest. We have another 2 years of expenses in i-bonds. We would also cut all unnecessary expenses (TV cable) and sell a bunch of stuff. I still can’t believe my friend let their retirement future go, just so they could keep living a “normal” life while he was out of work.
“I’m too young to worry about saving.”
That’s the most common excuse that my classmates are saying. They think that they could save another time, but what they don’t really know is that the early you save, the better is it for you.
I wish they would realize early the importance of saving money.
This is a great list. I have heard all of these before from people who say they want to save money. People always think of saving as “extra money”. The fact is, if you pay yourself first, you don’t have to worry about having extra money. Thanks for the article!