Saving for a rainy day

Easy tips for whether you’re saving for a summer vacation or beefing up your emergency fund.

There are better ways to save money than hiding extra cash in your mattress.
There are better ways to save money than hiding extra cash in your mattress.

If you’re like me, you might think that RRSP and TFSA look more like spoonfuls of Alpha-Getti than ways to help you save, you might need a nudge in the right direction. Brian Himmelman, president of Himmelman & Associates, offered me some advice on how to put money away when the under-the-mattress approach just doesn’t cut it anymore.

Start early
It doesn’t matter how small, if you can afford to put away a percent of your earnings every month, DO IT—future you will be very pleased.

Pretend you can’t touch the money you save
Better yet, pretend you didn’t even earn that money. This can be tough, but with a little self-discipline it is possible. Treat your money like the mafia. It can go in, but it can’t come out.

Don’t look online
Like you should never try to diagnose yourself via WebMD, you shouldn’t go online to find out how to deal with money. When it comes to your cash flow (or lack thereof), it is best to rely on expert advice, and not that sketchy Wiki answer from 2009. If you do look online, make sure you are looking at credible sources. Use the info to formulate questions to ask someone more knowledgable, whether it’s an advisor, a banker or that one friend who knows everything.

If you’re in debt, pay half and save half
Let’s say you have 200 bucks at the end of the month after rent, phone bills and beer are accounted for. Put $100 towards your debt and the other $100 into the savings account of your choice.

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