5 ways for Airmen to keep saving money

  • Published
  • By Kevin Startt, ChFC
  • Personal Financial Counselor, Dobbins Air Reserve Base
Are you looking for ways to spend wisely? If so, these considerations could help you achieve your goals?

1. Think about your dreams before thinking about money goals, budgets and spending. I say spend like a Pauper young, so you can live like a king later. In other words, aim for a tangible, specific goal, like financial independence and pursue it diligently through a written plan. A budget as part of the plan is telling your money where it should go rather than wondering where it went. Make sure you know what your personal postcard should say 40 years from now and realize a spending plan is just a starting point.

2. Make sure your budget in the military reflects smart spending input decisions and not consequences of frivolous spending. Here’s some questions you can ask yourself: When you shop for groceries, are you looking at the lowest unit price for cereal? Are you shopping from the back of the store, where the best bargains are, to the front, where the highest margin items are located? Is Clarence in clearance your best retail friend? Finally, do you walk out of the store once you exceed your budget and snatch every buy one, get one free item in the store that has coupons as well?

3. For couples, budget jointly and add two columns to your budget spreadsheet. Go over what each of you believes is a necessity or a luxury. The long running police TV show “Bluebloods”, featuring Tom Selleck, features a blunt, frank family talk over dinner about a variety of topics. It is a good model for a family budget discussion. Include the kids at an early age. In addition to their piggy bank, make sure you have a piggy bank for left over change. It is a good model for a family budget discussion. There are going to be some zig, zags and uppercuts and low blows along the way. Mutually agree that money belongs to you both, that it is a gift, a product of hard work and that large expenses, such as $100 or more should be discussed. Employ the 10-day rule on larger purchases. If you buy an item, keep the receipt and take the item back if it is not a necessary purchase. Bring your healthy lunch to work.

4. Stream or rent movies instead of going out to the theater. Eat out at a minimum but when you do, take advantage of military discounts.

5. Raise the deductibles on your homeowners and auto and take advantage of good driver discounts and safe driver apps. Do not make your car a mortgage. Pay cash if possible and buy used. Leasing is not recommended, but is viable if done right. See your car as a mode of transportation not a status symbol.
Keeping up with the Jones will keep you in debt, which is a four letter word. If you are looking for some additional ideas on getting out of debt as quickly as possible, please contact:

Kevin Startt, ChFC
Personal Financial Counselor
Phone: 404-804-9759
Personal Financial Counselor Program, Dobbins Air Reserve Base