I am celebrating my mom as she is 100 in heaven. I am passing on lessons she taught me.
She saved money even when she didn’t have much. When my dad passed, she had very little to live on. When she went back to work, she packed her lunch. I remember her telling me that the “girls” she worked with would walk over to the Carl’s Jr. that was across the street from her work. She asked them how much lunch cost there. They told her it was about $5. She put $5 a day away and took $25.00 a week to the bank. The $25 soon became $100 then $1,000.
She started my kids in the habit of saving young, too. She would pay them for chores around her house. Then, if they put some in the bank, she would double what they put in. When my daughter started working, my mom told her to take $100 plus the “change” (if her check was $218.33 she would add $8.33 to the $100 saved). My son was taught the same; both of them have saved enough for down payments for homes.
My mom’s most brilliant move was matching my daughter’s income and putting it aside in a Roth IRA. My daughter had to earn money to contribute, but the contribution did not have to be her money. My daughter’s IRA is quite large for someone her age. My son spent his teens getting good grades that earned him scholarships, but my mom also contributed to a 529 fund that helped pay for his college. He was able to graduate debt-free thanks to her.
So save… even a little will add up. I have just started putting aside the money I could spend on lunch out. $15 a day will add up to $75 a week, and adding that to my savings could help on a rainy day as I did use some savings during Covid.