Nine Old School Money Management Tips

January 21, 2013  |  
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As a millennial generation heads into their 20s and 30s, many have had either a great or not-so great example of what it means to manage their money. Although the age of careers, job searches, marriages and first homes are approaching, many millennials still have no clue what it truly means to manage money for their long-term success and comfort. Even parents are sometimes shaky resources for personal finance information.

2012 U.S. News Money article finds that Generation Xers (who are now in their 30s and 40s) are the generation with the most financial frustration. Retirees are increasingly responsible for their own savings, income, and financial futures. Let’s face it, we all can use an old-fashioned money management lesson every now and again.

Let’s all learn a little bit from past generations, and keep your money flowing with these old school money management tips.

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Live Below Your Means

One of the best pieces of advice and most popular money management tips from older generations is to live below your means. Living below your means could mean a number of different things, from cutting out unnecessary bills to finding cheaper, comfortable housing to save money in the long-term.

Many older Americans who lived by that advice are now retired and own their own home (or homes) with minimal debt. Take the time out to find ways to make your life more cost-effective, whether it’s cutting your credit card bills by paying down more or finding a more affordable home where the mortgage/rent will be cheaper. The short-term investment in the present will pay off big in the future, giving you the opportunity to save more.

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Stash Loose Change In A Jar After Every Day

One very old school money ritual is keeping your loose change in a jar after the end of every day. It is a great way to see even the change of your money add up, and it could come in handy more than you know. Cashing it out after a year or so could add up to something very substantial!

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Savings Come First; Bills Come Second

Older generations take into consideration their savings way more then their bills, which is one of the keys to success with money management. Before they allot a certain amount to luxuries and bills, they made sure they alloted money for their savings, retirement funds, and other important accounts that add up more in the long-term.

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Invest Wisely and For The Long Haul

Investing in your first home, stocks and bonds, or even in a fund like one for college are wise decisions when trying to manage your money well for the long-term. In many of these investments, you are able to earn your money back double or triple of what you put out to invest. Make sure it’s an investment you can sink your teeth (and your wallet) into for the long haul, so that when your retirement years are upon you, you are able to not only survive, but continue to thrive.

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Always Check Your Bank Statements

Checking your bank statements every month could be time consuming and old school, but well worth it. Make sure you keep up with where every penny is going in your bank account and make sure it adds up accordingly.

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Carry Cash

Another great old school tip that many of us forget to take heed of is carrying cash for emergencies. You never know when you might need cash versus your debit or credit card for a purchase. But also, a great advantage of paying in cash versus paying with a card is you have a better handle of how much you have spent in real-time.

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Buy Quality Over Quantity

Our parents and grandparents usually will keep a pair of shoes, sweater, earrings and other items for years and years, not because of memories, but because of its quality. Also, they know that keeping it in good condition will make it last longer, ultimately saving them money short-term on various pairs of shoes, clothing, etc. Take a few shopping tips from the older generation and shoot for quality over quantity. Also, find reliable services like an eye care specialist, cobbler, and others who can service your clothes and personal items to make them last.

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Check In On Your Banking Institution Regularly 

Many banks are now charging their customers, even their loyal customers, a service charge that could automatically take $5 to $10 or more on a regular basis. This might not seem like a lot on the surface, but taking $5 out of your account every month costs you $60 a year of your money; $60 that could go into your savings.

Make sure you always check the changing terms and agreements of your banking institutions, and if they have decided to charge you a monthly fee, look for a more reliable bank, like a credit union. Also, always keep tabs on your account’s withdrawals. When it comes to the banking world, ignorance is not bliss on your part.

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Determine Your Own Lifestyle Before Advertisers Do

You honestly know there are some things your lifestyle doesn’t call for, like that 42″ flat screen television in your bedroom or your new iPad that’s coupled with your iPhone, iPod and Macbook. Take the time out to analyze what you really need in your life versus what looks good to have. You may not even realize it, but advertising could be having a big influence on how you think you should be living.

What are some old school money management tips you learned from your parents or grandparents? Share your advice below!

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  • Reese

    I recently hit a brick wall with my finances and realized it was time for me to make a major change as far as my spending habits are concerned. I have good credit because I pay my bills on time but after I pay my bills I have little to no money left to live on. One thing I greatly admire about my grandmother is that she can make a dollar holler and make a nickel scream. She doesn’t buy clothing unless it is absolutely necessary, she doesn’t move her car unless it is absolutely necessary, and she saves money with discipline.

  • Simply put, there are hardly any quality products these days. Its all made in China and labeled in the US. Its watered milk at every dime store all the way. In other words, buying quantity of the cheaper stuff makes more economic sense simply because the quality stuff costs more but lasts as long as the low grade stuff.

  • jsmith12

    I hate to admit it but there are a lot of people who are too busy trying to keep up with the joneses instead of saving there money and investing it wisely. A lot of people are in debt because of this and it continues everyday.

  • Bright like a diamond

    This is a very informative article. I am interested in investing but have no clue where to start.