Save! Save! Save!

Save! Save! Save!

photo by steed media service

If Florida Evans (“Good Times”) were around today, she would be singing a different tune. She wouldn’t have to wring her hands and utter the expletives, “Damn! Damn! Damn!” because she would be a woman empowered by financial security. Portrayed as a lower-middle-class wife and mother of three, she taught us how to make something from nothing while managing to keep a smile on your face and nurturing your kids. But if she were an ‘80s mother like Clair Huxtable (“The Cosby Show”) or even a new millennium mother like Janet ‘Jay’ Kyle (“My Wife and Kids”), she would welcome affluence and financial stability. 

Financial stability can only be achieved by employing the proper strategy. Here we’ve outlined a few tips improve your fiscal savoir-faire.

  1. Reduce Your 2007 Tax Bill – Make the maximum allowable contribution to your retirement savings. You may contribute up to $15,500 of your pre-tax salary to a 401(k) plan and the IRA contribution limit is $4,000.
  2. Shop at Consignment Shops – Buy vintage! Actress Winona Ryder has done it for years. She dons every red carpet from the Golden Globes to The Oscars in classic pieces.
  3. Look for Sales – You should only shop when there are sales. It is never OK to purchase items at full price. Even if there isn’t a publicized sale, check with the associate to see if there’s a quiet sale going on or if the store distributed a coupon to customers on their mailing list.
  4. Request Estimates in Advance – If you’re taking your car for repairs, always ask the service guy for an estimate. Explain the problem that you’re having and once he tells you the fee, sign on the dotted line and hold him to it.
  5. Lower Your Grocery Bill – Use coupons. Plan meals before you shop and avoid going to the grocery store on an empty stomach. Lastly, don’t buy toiletries at the grocery store.

Save! Save! Save! Turn your mourning and mulling over your budget into a happy time. The ultimate goal is to have more money to invest in stocks, mutual funds and bonds, and a better quality of life while watching your savings grow as you move up to the east side to that deluxe, skyscraping condo. –yvette caslin

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