The 1-Percent Savings Solution

Want a simple, pain-free plan to increase your savings in 2020? CPA, author, and blogger Mike Piper says to save 1 percent more. “Increase your savings contributions by 1 percent of your gross income,” suggests Piper. Just 1 percent—a good get-started savings plan!

It might be difficult to imagine how such a small change could make any difference at all, but according to Piper, this strategy can work wonders, especially if you are young. It’s so simple: Get a savings plan.

Anything you can do to become a consistent saver is going to come back to bless you in the future. A personal program of consistent savings does more than increasing your bank account. It changes your attitude. It quiets your insatiable desires and moves you away from the financial edge where it is easy to worry and panic.

Money in the bank changes everything.

We Americans are not very good savers, but getting better! As of this writing, the personal savings rate in the U.S. is down but better than it’s been in past years.

To add perspective, the median average salary for workers in the United States in the first three months of 2020 was $49,764 per year. A 1-percent increase would boost annual savings by just $497 annually. Not much? You’re right, but for some that would be a hefty increase from $0 to $497—a good start!

It’s not easy

I understand that saving money isn’t easy. That’s because the cost of everything seems to be rising and there are so many things our families need. It takes courage and creativity to stretch the money far enough to last until the next payday. I get it.

But I also know how easy it is to turn “wants” into “needs.” You know what I’m thinking about and that would be your cable TV bill and data plans for your smartphones. I’m talking about fast food, restaurant meals, and fancy coffee drinks. Money has a way of leaking out of our lives. If you’re smart you’ll start to notice and do something to plug the leaks so you can stick with your savings plan.

Uncertainty ahead

I don’t know what the future holds but I do know that bright predictions for economic times don’t last forever. Things are uncertain. That’s why we need to get our heads out of the sand and plan accordingly.

If you knew for certain that exactly six months from today you would lose your household income, that for a season you would have to survive on what you have saved, how would you prepare?

You don’t know what is going to happen this year, so why not go ahead and begin to prepare as if yours will be the worst-case scenario. Then if all is well in six months, you’ll have started a nice nest egg. Get tough, be strong.

One percent

Just one piddly percent more than you are saving now. For some that would mean starting from scratch—saving just 1-percent of your paycheck. For others, simply increase savings by 1-percent.

Don’t think about it. Just do it. Don’t flinch, don’t overthink. Just designate a place to save it and then get ‘er done.

Every day find your motivation and inspiration for ways to do that right here at Everyday Cheapskate. That’s what we’re all about—finding every way possible to save time and money … every day!

I’ll check back this time next year to see how this has worked out for you. I’m smiling because I already know.

I can’t wait for you to find out.

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4 replies
  1. Luisa says:

    Mary, I like this article. I wish I’d received this advice and followed it when I started out. My husband ran up huge debts without my knowledge, cleaned out everything we had, and then left. I started over about 20 years ago devastated, deeply in debt, worked multiple jobs at a time, and learned as I went. Your columns and books were a great help.
    I retired last year with a pension and some IRAs, and paid off my mortgage (early!) this month. I should have been smarter about the man and about the money, but I came through it and rebuilt my life. I am writing this to say thank you, Mary, and to offer encouragement to others who may be in a rough place and feeling panicked.

    Reply

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