Fooling Ourselves: Building an IRA without noticing
Monday Dec 16 2013

I’ve been advising people for years on a simple way for them to save money when they are adamant that they do not have extra money to save. Don’t let your brain defeat you. Janiel was a recently divorced teacher here in Utah, and a client. She was easily saving $2500 a year without it hampering her lifestyle by implementing this tactic. Sometimes we need to fool ourselves into being smart. Let me ellaborate;

A person spends money on various things every day, buying gas, fast food, widgets at Home Depot, shoes, groceries, etc. The normal tendency in us all is to try and give correct change, or even give the various clerks cash and coins so they can combine the change in currency alone. And as I’m sure most reading this were saying to themselves, “I just use a debit card”. If you really want to save money for your annual retirement account contribution this may work for you. It has worked for many of my clients, And if not for you, then for your kids.

Take a water cooler jug, the ones with the little spout. Set it in an out of the way place, but convenient to get at. Most use their clothes closet. Take an old tee shirt and put it on the jug. (I wish I could see your face as you’re reading this) Then start your daily retirement contest. Each day when you need to pay for something, don't pay with a debit card, or give exact change. Use denominations that will get you coins as change.  Try and beat your record each day of how much change you're able to deposit into the ‘JUG’. Janiel told me her record was $27 in a day, but averaging $3.a day, and none of that was her adding extra. Did you do the math in your head? That's an average of $90 a month! Occasionally take a dollar bill, or even a $5 bill and put it in the jug.  BUT remember one thing, once money goes into the jug, it doesn’t come out!  Once a month you take the change into the bank and get a check for the amount, NO CASH! Then take that check to an advisor, Casull Financial Advisory, for example, that utilizes ULTRA LOW FEEs, and instruct us to deposit it into your IRA. After 20 years depositing $90 a month earning a return of 8% equals $51,676.01 from a practically unnoticed source! Janiel has almost doubled that so far! PLEASE! Don't let your brain defeat you. Many little amounts can easily turn into a large amount.

Steve J. Casull, CEO & Founder