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The First Step To Stretching Your Dollars

BOSTON (CBS) - SunTrust conducted a survey on savings and found that a third of those with incomes over $75,000 were living paycheck to paycheck. And when they broke it down into age groups, 70% of millennials were living paycheck to paycheck.

Saving money is hard. The US savings rate as of May is 5.1%. Better than a year ago but not as good as I would like to see it.

Saving allows you to get out of debt and to reach your financial goals. You want to try and save 10% of your net pay. To do this you want to try to save on everything you purchase – merchandise or services.

If you're living paycheck to paycheck you are feeling pretty good about your money management skills right about now. But to achieve your goals you'll need to save.

You need to set up a budget and scrutinize every purchase you make. And that can be painful. A new car, health insurance, a pack of gum, new shoes, bakery cupcakes, a dinner out, the movies. Every purchase should be justified.

You have to decide if it's a need or a want. Do I need what I am about to purchase or do I want it? And for some folks just the asking is enough to help you change your mind about buying anything frivolous.

This usually works for me but not always. There is a 9 year old little person in my life who can easily sway a decisions in her favor!

A woman who had attended one of my seminars created a savings plan. She started with saving $2 a day which she found easy to do. After a couple of months she increased it to $3 a day, then $4 and now she is over $8 a day with a goal of $3,000 this year.

So if she doesn't stop for a coffee and muffin in the morning she puts $4 in her savings. If she pumped her own gas that day and saved 10 cents a gallon she puts that $1 in her savings. If she skipped the movies with friends and invited them over to watch a DVD she tucked $8 into savings. Last year she saved over $2,000.


You can hear Dee Lee's expert financial advice on WBZ NewsRadio 1030 each weekday at 1:55 p.m., 3:55 p.m., and 7:55 p.m.

Subscribe to Dee's Money Matters newsletter here.

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