How much of your paycheck do you save?

  1. I've always been debt averse but slow on savings. Now I'm passionate about it and saving/investing is one of my favorite hobbies.
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  2. Poll: What is your savings philosophy and how much do you save?

    • 0%- I would but I just don't have the money right now.

      29.03% 27
    • 0%- The future will take care of itself.

      1.08% 1
    • 5-10%- That's all I can afford.

      21.51% 20
    • 5-10%- That should be plenty.

      8.60% 8
    • 10-15%- I plan to have a comfortable retirement.

      12.90% 12
    • 15-25%- I plan to finish rich!

      11.83% 11
    • 25%+- Okay I'm obsessed.

      15.05% 14
    93 Votes
  3. 36 Comments

  4. by   Spidey's mom
    Our income is so variable depending on weather - my husband is a logger. It is hard to save.

    I'm determined this year though. At least 10%. I do have a 401K but I had to borrow money from it last year to get us through the winter and I'm paying it back, every other paycheck.

    I'm 51, my husband is 55 and we have a 7 year old. And a daughter in college.

    steph
  5. by   canoehead
    I don't save, but I use extra money to pay down my mortgage debt, so it will save me in the long run. When I was contributing to a 401k it was about 25% of my gross. Now I have a pension plan through the union.
  6. by   flightnurse2b
    i'm horrible at saving money... so i have 4% of my check to my 401K right now (all i can really afford to do, but i'm vested with HCA so i have a pretty good amount stashed)... and i use bank of america, so i do the keep the change program since i am a debit card addict. you'd be surprised how much the change adds up, esp since they match it at the end of the year.
  7. by   herring_RN
    I've been saving since I started earning money.
    DH does too. He says, "Money doesn't spoil."

    Every week we would put money in the bank, sometimes just $1.00 when we were poor.
    After we save a down payment anb bought this house we just barely paid the mortgage and saved a little every payday unil I was working full time nights as an LVN.
    Then payed as much extra on the mortgage as went into savings.

    House is paid for and I'm part time. Still always save something.
    Never put $$ into the market. It seems like too much of a gamble to me.

    We're in good shape.
  8. by   www.angel29
    I would like to save & will try to do so soon, I'm trying to discipline myself into paying bills on time, once I pay off some debts, I should be in better shape to save up for my future.
  9. by   SnowRain7489
    I think it takes practice. Sounds goofy, huh...I know. Think about it for a minute if u are not good at saving money then start slow. Save $10/week into your savings - do the math, that's $480/year that is of course if you are truly struggling down in the dumpst. If you want to up it after a month or so, up it to $20 every week. Money is all relative. What I think is a high income may not be so high to you & vice versa. If you just keep on saving every week a "set" amount, you will see your account go up and subsequently you'll feel good.
  10. by   jnrsmommy
    We're getting better at saving. Every paycheck, $100 out of each of our paychecks into savings, $50 goes in to each of our 2 girls' savings accounts, we both have 401k that we're putting in w/ employer match (forget the exact amount, but dh knows). Plus, dh does the checkbook a little differently. He rounds up on anything that we have to deduct from the account, and rounds down on the deposits. This helps build a little cusion so that we don't have to touch the savings. At the moment, we have almost a 4k buffer in the checking account.
  11. by   Tweety
    I've been putting away 10% in my 403B for about 10 plus years. There was about a six month period there where I didn't put in anything. There also has been some hard times during that time when I borrowed $10,000. It took me four years to pay it back out of every paycheck and I'm done with that.

    I "lost" about 30% in the "crash" and it's slowly bouncing back. I also try to save cash, but it seems every few months a I have to spend it. Plus I splurge on vacations.

    I have a separate Roth IRA, that I put $150.00 a month in that I started a couple of years ago, just for a tiny bit extra. It's basically made nothing and has only $2000.00

    So while my answer was 10-15%, I not very confident I'll have a comfortable retirement. But I still have 15-20 more working years to work on it.
  12. by   SharonH, RN
    Quote from Tweety
    I've been putting away 10% in my 403B for about 10 plus years. There was about a six month period there where I didn't put in anything. There also has been some hard times during that time when I borrowed $10,000. It took me four years to pay it back out of every paycheck and I'm done with that.

    I "lost" about 30% in the "crash" and it's slowly bouncing back. I also try to save cash, but it seems every few months a I have to spend it. Plus I splurge on vacations.

    I have a separate Roth IRA, that I put $150.00 a month in that I started a couple of years ago, just for a tiny bit extra. It's basically made nothing and has only $2000.00

    So while my answer was 10-15%, I not very confident I'll have a comfortable retirement. But I still have 15-20 more working years to work on it.

    Tweety, have you considered maxing out your Roth? While it may not grow much, your growth and withdrawals will be tax-free.
  13. by   Tweety
    Quote from SharonH, RN
    Tweety, have you considered maxing out your Roth? While it may not grow much, your growth and withdrawals will be tax-free.
    I'm pretty stretched financially right now, but what do you mean "maxing out"? How much is that?
  14. by   learninmama
    For the last 5 years we put in 10%. I sold my business to go back to school in July & then my husband was laid off in August. So at the moment there is not much extra to put away. We currently put away $50 a month (4% of unemployment income). We will get back up there though just a rough patch
  15. by   bhanson
    Most people have no idea how to balance their finances.

    It's common knowledge in the personal finance blogosphere that everyone should save a MINIMUM of 20% of your income.

    The most common excuse is that you don't have any extra money right now. While this may be true for some select individuals in select geographical areas, for the majority of people this is not the case.

    A well known metric for finance is called the balanced money formula.

    50% of your income on needs: rent, food, transportation, etc.
    30% of your income on wants: eating out, entertainment, etc.
    20% of your income on savings: retirement accounts, emergency fund, paying off debt, etc.

    This allows you to still enjoy the money that you make, but still save a mostly adequate amount. For people in debt it is often advised to redirect a percentage of your wants category into savings.

    The most important part of financial freedom is to keep your needs below 50% of your income. This has a nice side effect where if you live in a dual-income household, you can lose one income (due to health, unemployment, etc.) and ordinarily not go into any debt!

    Personally my current income is divided up into: 50% needs, 10% wants, 40% savings.

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