Can you believe I began today’s post about explaining how to save money? Yup, I had three paragraphs written out detailing the way I manage to save my money each and every week. I broke down how to make a budget, ways to calculate your spending and even a trick to saving on life’s little things. I wrote all that in three paragraphs, reread it, highlighted it all and hit delete. What complete and utter crap it was.
You see, it’s not my position in life to tell people how to save money or where their weekly wage should go. That’s their choice. Some people smoke and buy two packs a week, while others love to have a few glasses of wine over dinner. There are people who buy a new car every few years, and others that take public transport. People of all ages go out and buy LEGO, while others work out at the gym.
Everyone has different spending.
There are news articles with people saving a home loan deposit in 12 months. Believe it or not, I actually read an article the other day with an eye-catching headline. The guy was a property manager earning $80,000 plus per year and needed a home deposit. It explained how the guy managed to cut back on his basic spending for a year and saved enough to put a deposit on a house.
What they failed to highlight until you got much deeper into the article, was that not everyone is lucky enough to buy and sell (I believe it’s called, ‘flipping’) things online to make a profit. Not everyone is able to pack up and move in with a group of friends to cut down on rent. And not everyone can work from home as needed, or travel via public transport.
The article pissed me off because I know how hard it is to work out a budget, save a deposit and buy a house. I’ve done it and it was one of the most painful experiences of my life. The budget part, well that was fun to be honest.
I should also inform you, it took me 33 years to buy the place I live in now.
Let’s get back to it. Not everyone has the ability to live rent free at home. Or cut back on travel costs. Not every job can be done from home. And not everyone is lucky enough to be in the property market already.
Financial advisers writing articles about saving for a home make bullshit claims and get away with it because people are desperate and want any advice they can get. The average worker doesn’t have the ability to work overtime as needed. They can’t save on travel expenses and not everyone has an office job. Can we just make that clear from the start? People that publish articles ‘how to save for a home in 1 year’, well they have office jobs and spend ridiculous amounts for no reason. So cutting back on those wants and focusing everything on their needs easily allows them to afford a deposit.
It reminds me of all those columns you see where chefs claim to be able to feed a family of 4 for $5 day. In what world? I can’t feed myself for dinner on $5, and you expect another 3 people to come in under $5? You’re either feeding them bread, or you’re working under the assumption they already have the basics, and $5 counts towards the extra things you’d buy. Either way, it’s an attention grabbing title, but has little substance…much like the meals you’d be preparing for $5 to feed 4.
Frankly, I’m just sick of the bullshit pushed out in the media nowadays. Everything is fake to the point the average person has no idea what to believe anymore. We need to look a certain way, because that’s what we’re told by models on Instagram and magazine covers. We see home cooked meals for $3, but in actual fact cost way more. And finally we’re told we can save for a home deposit in a single year just buy cutting out that morning coffee on the way to work.
The advice I got when going around to banks was simple. “Make a budget!” Figure out what you’re spending money on, and see if you can cut back. Easy for some. At the end of the day all I want people to take away from this post is one simple thing; be happy and go at your own pace.