Alright let’s be frank, whether you are a Baby Boomer, Gen X, Y or Z; 2017 demands income diversification – not in the traditional investment sense, I am not speaking about “all eggs in one basket” kind of diversification – what I mean is that all our income is now spread far and wide; Netflix, phone bills, travel, new cars, gym…and the list continues. Never has our money been pulled in so many directions.

 

So, however in a world of income diversification, how do we go from being a spender to a saver? The answer comes down to a set of behaviours, repetition in your spending habits which I believe you can change within 4 weeks.

 

Accept the Sacrifice:

When I was 20, boy was I living; drinking a coffee every morning and enjoying a daily knock off beer.  Combine this with the perfect weekend blend of a house full of my closest mates, a slab of beer and bottle of bourbon. This 20 year old was a happy man – until I did I my budget.

1 coffee ($5) x 5 days = $25

1 2 knock off beers ($10) x 5 days = $50

1 x carton ($50) = $50

1 x Jim Beam Bottle ($50) = $50

3 x cricket games = $45

Total = $220 per week ($11,440 per annum)

Now I wish I could say these were my only discretional spends, but I personally found over $300 per week that I didn’t have to be spending!

Don’t get me wrong; I am not suggesting you pass in that coffee addiction or become the permanent DD – what I am suggesting is to invest in an Esky ($100) buy the ice ($3) and your friends bring the beers.

Joking (but not really!)

What I am saying is do your budget, know where you are spending your money and over the next 4 weeks slowly cut down each item, at the end of the month you will find a healthy kick to your savings – then simply repeat.

 

We live in an Income Society:

When you start to look, you will quickly find hundreds of ways to earn a bit of extra cash. Your challenge will be to throw that in the bank – remember just because you have it doesn’t mean you should spend it.

I personally decided to start umpiring indoor cricket, for me this did two things:

  1. Reduce my intake of beers; and
  2. Give me $80 cash a night over 3 nights – $240!

Sometimes this sucked right, some nights or weekends it was the last thing I wanted to do; but turning that key to the front door of my first property was bloody brilliant and those nights are now distant memories.

Check out out Income Society catch up here

 

Change your savings Habits:

With all jokes aside this truly is the single most important thing you can do over the next 30 days to become a saver.

I once heard a very powerful theory by Warren Buffett – “Don’t save what is left after spending, spend what is left after saving”.

Spend 10 minutes now to help me with this exercise.

  1. From now; when do you want to be in your property (in weeks)?
  2. How much do you want to spend on your new home?
  3. Work out 25% (Maximum offer x .25)
  4. (Point 3 – what you already have saved) / time remaining to be at point 1 (in weeks)
  5. You now know how much you need to save; budget your lifestyle around it!

Can’t? That’s all good, just extend your timeframe a little or think about our income society.

Tip – once you have hit a 15% deposit download Brixn – you may be closer than you think.

I personally used to always stay 1 week ahead of my savings account. I had my direct debit set up and held out in anticipation for payday to see my savings account grow and you know what, I couldn’t wait until the next payday!

 

Enjoy the Journey:

Deciding to buy a home, saving your deposit, buying a house – all of it – it’s a cracking experience. So, when you consider your savings plan don’t let it stop you from rewarding yourself.

I am thrilled to be the one to tell you; as the next generation of home owners it is okay to dip into your savings for a big night out or an overseas experience. We don’t have to buy a house, be married and have 3 kids under the belt by 22. So don’t feel guilty, just get back on the savings train.

But if permission is what you are after, take it from me – if you want to travel then travel, if you want to have the occasional night out than do it! A separate savings account for my holiday plans, social outings and slush fund worked well to meet my home ownership expectations whist enjoying the lifestyle I wanted.

 

So, remember:

  1. Find your sacrifices
  2. Think income society
  3. Change your savings habits
  4. Set your expectations around home ownership to meet your lifestyle –

You really can have your cake and eat it too.

 

Bring opportunity to your doorstep.

Zac Goodman