Blog Post: A Fresh Graduate's Guide to Saving Money

04 Sep 2017
20 Mins Read

Getting Old Can be One Big Party

When we flip the script in our head about retirement savings, it makes a lot more sense to think about it today.

Until recently, I never thought about retirement savings. I mean, I'm busy enough thinking about how to get my career started, my logic yelled at me. Who has time to think about it ending?

Besides, basic human nature is to put off anything we regard as depressing. And let's not mince words: the term retirement is a downer.

1. If We Took a Holiday

That is, until somebody in the pub gave me some advice well worthy of the beer I'd bought him. "Why wouldn't you save money for your most amazing holiday ever?!"

I realised he was right and jokingly demanded he pay for his own beer.

I used to buy into the negative sentiment of the term "retirement". Then I remembered a recent fact I'd heard: that older people are consistently happier than younger ones.

If l could somehow keep Alice Cooper playing in my head whenever I thought about saving, I would quickly find it easy to plan that retirement nest egg.

"School's out for summer — school's out forever!"

2. It's Not just Your Retirement

Yes sure, you might well say. But I've got 40 years to think about retirement — I don't even have a house or a car yet.

Quite correct, and put funds aside for those too. But one thing to consider is this: "rainy day" retirement funds aren't just for your own retirement.

Remember that famous quote by Wordsworth? "The child is the father of man". Many of us, in our 20s and 30s, grow to realise what that actually means.

Having given us a leg-up on education and direction, our parents grow to need our help too as they realise that their own savings aren't going as far in their retirement as they'd hoped. One reason being, we're all living longer than we expected.

And where did your parents' savings go? Don't ask it too loudly — there's a good chance it went to paying for your university degree.

3. Dear Future Children

I really don't want to freak you out here, but it never hurts to think about your future children too.

Think about it a bit and the formula makes sense. If you start putting money away for your retirement during your 20s, your kids can have more fun in their 20s.

Just a little saved every pay-day now can go a long way — you have decades to save. Saving on five expensive coffees every week (a hundred bucks a month), could be the difference between being prepared and being short-changed. Which I decided, is far less depressing.

 

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