Spending money can feel a whole lot more fun than saving it, but if you don’t have enough cash when the bad times hit, you’ll end up a whole lot worse off than if you stashed away your spare change.
Fortunately, saving money doesn’t have to be a dreadful activity. If you find a way to make it fun — by setting goals and celebrating rewards, for example — you will feel ten times better when an unexpected incident occurs.
Here are three ideas for making saving money fun:
1: Cut expenses creatively. If you can’t find room in your budget to trim, challenge yourself to doing something different. For example, host a clothing swap with friends or hit up the Goodwill store in a posh, upscale neighborhood instead of shelling out $500 or more for new apparel at the beginning of a season. Or instead of going to SoulCycle every Thursday, try to organize a running group that meets on a weekly or biweekly basis for a month. Use the cash you save from experiences like these to learn new things (and get out of your usual rut), and boost your savings account so you don’t have to use a credit card to pay for a new set of tires when your worn-out wheels unexpectedly go flat.
2: Break out the piggy bank. When you were little, you probably loved slipping quarters into a piggy bank, and got even more joy out of counting quarters later on. It’s not to late to relive your youth, and start slipping spare pennies, nickels, dimes, and (yes!) quarters into a jar or actual piggy bank, and then counting your loot at the end of a four-week period! If you’ve saved upwards of $10, that’s money that can be put away for later (when you actually need it).
3: Challenge Yourself to Deposit $5 a Day into Your Savings Account. For the cost of a fancy smoothie at a health food store, you can boost your savings account by about $150 a month. Sound too good to be true (or too ambitious)? If so, start small. Every day, log onto your financial institution’s website and transfer $5 into your savings account. After a few days, seeing this account grow and grow will motivate you to save even more.