Guest post by Amy at Amy’s Finer Things
The excuses are many.
If only we made more money.
If only we had two incomes.
If only I had my degree.
If only we hadn’t had kids so soon.
If only we didn’t need so many things for the house.
If only is not an excuse to not save!
I know I’m not the only one who has been reading with fascination and admiration Crystal’s account of saving 100% down for a home. The discipline, the drive, the faith… what an amazing accomplishment!
I wonder, too, if many of you have done the math and realized the significance of their savings in such a short time period. For our family, it would (more or less) mean saving 100% of my husband’s gross teaching salary for 3-4 years. We believe in living on little, but 0% is a little too little.
If you’re living on a smaller salary, take heart. You may not be in a position to save 100% for a home, but barring a medical or financial emergency situation, you can and should still save!
Here are some of the strategies we employ to save on our smaller income.
Give first. No matter our financial situation, there is always someone somewhere who is in need. We have never suffered financially while giving generously.
Set financial priorities and goals. Before we were even married we knew that our priority would be for me to raise our children from home. Knowing a single income was in our future, we began living on one immediately, putting much of my income in savings. It was nice to have a head start!
Save automatically. Our savings deposit is made automatically each month, much the same as automatic bill payment. There is no need to ask “Can we spare this money right now?” because it’s already taken care of.
Live below your means. Even on a smaller salary, we can live below our means. Do we make sacrifices? Sure we do! No cable, smaller home, older (paid for!) vehicles… the list goes on. And our savings account keeps growing.
Remember… the best things in life aren’t things! Forget the Jones’s; stop buying stuff to make you happy. It won’t. Cherish your relationships. Make frugal living fun in your family. With the right attitude, your friends might join you!
Stop it with the “If only…” Quit waiting for “Someday…” Even with young children, even with a single income, even with a smaller salary, the time to save is now.
A Tiny Town Kansas wife of one and mother of 4 (3 and one on the way), Amy believes in Embracing the Extraordinary in Every Day. On her blog, Amy demonstrates that living on one (smaller) income is both possible and rewarding. She’s not afraid to preach from her soapbox that The Finer Things in Life Aren’t Things!