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Big idea for forcing savings?

December 30th, 2011 at 03:37 pm

For a long time I've been playing around with a money "Game" that can at the same time boost savings and significantly reduce non-essential spending.

Here it is and let me know if you think it could work. I call it "double or nothing" literally!

If you buy something non-essential-- a splurge, whether it costs a dollar or $300-- if you buy it, you have to put an equal amount immediately into a savings or investment account, or pay it toward debt. It would essentially **double** the cost of any non-essential item. So you'd really have to think about how much you could actually afford it. Or, if you valued it enough to "pay" double.

In the past, DH and I have also played a "game" where we have to donate an amount equal to the purchase to a charity we absolutely hate-- something that completely disagrees with our social and political morals. That has worked. Just thinking the above would still leave room for purchases, while spurring thought about them, and benefitting ourselves.

Any thoughts?

10 Responses to “Big idea for forcing savings? ”

  1. MonkeyMama Says:

    Sounds like a good plan!

  2. baselle Says:

    I like it - if nothing else you'll be paying yourselves ... and hopefully you like yourselves more than you hate a disagreeable charity. Smile

  3. Amber Says:

    I can say it works, I do the same thing when I dine out. I actually payed off a CC doing this Big Grin

  4. ThriftoRama Says:

    Genius. Can you provide more details? Every time you ate out you double the cost of the bill and put it toward your debt???

  5. Amber Says:

    @ ThriftoRama, that is exactly it. I chose to do that because I notice one month I had spent over $300 simply eating out. Now what I do is on the days I do not eat out, I add $2, so if I had breakfast at home $2 is added, packed lunch $2, dinner at home $2. I figured I'd spend a lot more if I actually ate out so whats $2 a meal

  6. DeniseNTexas Says:

    Amber, do you actually do something with two physical dollars or is this tally kept in your head? And you said you 'add $2'. Add it to what? I like the ideas!
    I don't see why that wouldn't work. I absolutely detest clutter and have a rule that if I bring something non-essential into the place, two items must leave. It keeps clutter down to a dull, very dull, roar. Wink

  7. Jerry Says:

    This is a really nice idea, and if you stick by it, it could lead to great savings! Not only from the money that you DO spend, but also from the more frivolous stuff that you DON'T spend. Sometimes just thinking twice about something is exactly the insurance that we need to be able to avoid foolish decisions.
    Jerry

  8. ThriftoRama Says:

    I feel like I spend too much on frivolous things, without even thinking. I hope this will help!

  9. Amber Says:

    @ Denisentexas I hardly carry cash,so everything is done electronically. Let's say I brought my lunch today, I would pay $2 on my CC debt. Usually this is about $6 a day (breakfast, lunch and dinner). I do not include weekends, because I usually eat at home anyway. Also on the days I do not go to the gym, I'd pay $2 to the CC, in which the charges for the gym is charged too, and most of the time I have a credit Frown
    For 2011 I met my goal which started mid-November, and that was to save $1000 by December 31st. Well for the days I had breakfast at home, brought my lunch and cooked dinner I transferred $6 to my EF. Next lets say I had McDonalds and the cost was $4.56, then I would round up and add $5 to my EF. Before I knew it I had reached my goal. Now I'm tackling my cc debt. About 3 years ago I did this and got out of debt. Then I lost my job went into depression, stopped blogging and back into to debt. The good thing is I know I can do it.

  10. Amber Says:

    @ Denisentexas I hardly carry cash,so everything is done electronically. Let's say I brought my lunch today, I would pay $2 on my CC debt. Usually this is about $6 a day (breakfast, lunch and dinner). I do not include weekends, because I usually eat at home anyway. Also on the days I do not go to the gym, I'd pay $2 to the CC, in which the charges for the gym is charged too, and most of the time I have a credit Frown
    For 2011 I met my goal which started mid-November, and that was to save $1000 by December 31st. Well for the days I had breakfast at home, brought my lunch and cooked dinner I transferred $6 to my EF. Next lets say I had McDonalds and the cost was $4.56, then I would round up and add $5 to my EF. Before I knew it I had reached my goal. Now I'm tackling my cc debt. About 3 years ago I did this and got out of debt. Then I lost my job went into depression, stopped blogging and back into to debt. The good thing is I know I can do it. Playing money games per se, helps me a great deal. I figured by mid January, CC1 should be paid off

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