Money Management

A common phrase in money management circles is "Making money isn’t hard; the hard part is keeping it." Here are some tips on how to keep your money:

  • Before making purchases, determine whether the item is a NEED or a WANT. Buy the needs and occasionally treat yourself to the wants.
  • Forget the Joneses—they truly have nothing to do with you.Determine fixed expenses (car payment, loans, rent, etc.) and variable expenses (food, phone, entertainment, etc.).
  • Pay fixed expenses first, because you can always lower or adjust variable expenses.
  • Track your spending by using money management software like Quicken or Money.
  • Don’t spend what you don’t have—use DISCIPLINE.2 credit card rules: 1) always pay off the balance at the end of the month (emergencies withstanding) and 2) use credit cards that accrue points, discounts or other goodies.
  • Pack a lunch rather than eat out.
  • Shop at thrift stores, garage sales, use coupons and always try to buy on sale.
  • Use Sprague Library and your local library to rent movies and borrow books/magazines.
  • Negotiate price wherever and whenever you think it’s appropriate.
  • If available, sign up for your employer’s automatic investment plan—& watch the $ grow.
  • Establish and contribute to a Roth IRA whenever possible—the account appreciates tax free each year and better still is that all gains can be withdrawn tax free after age 59 ½.
  • Enroll in your employer’s retirement plan and—at the least—match their contribution.Invest what you have saved and let compound interest take care of the rest.


Money in Your 20s- for new grads! There’s a great deal of helpful information here to help you think about where your money goes.

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