The other day as I was getting my kids ready for school my oldest daughter started begging me to buy an app on her Kindle.
“Take the money out of my savings” she said.
I quickly shot the idea down reminding her the money I save is for her future. “It will help pay for college if you decide to go or help pay for something else if you don’t.” I told her.
She asked how much money I had saved.
I hadn’t checked for quite some time and since I only save $50/month I guessed around $1,000. I really had no idea though.
So, after I told her $1,000 I decided I better check.
Lo and behold I had saved over $1,600 for each of my older daughters and almost $400 for my now five month old. AND my retirement account (all with Betterment) had WAY more in it than I thought it would.
Win. Win. Win.
Small Amounts Really Do Add Up
If you’ve ever been discouraged by the fact that you only have a small amount of money to save, don’t be! Small amounts really do add up.
When I first started my kids’ accounts a couple years ago the contributions didn’t feel like much – like they would take FOREVER to amount to anything and now they’re sitting with over $1,600 each.
I felt the same way when I started an emergency fund and at that time I had WAY less to save. I would budget down to the penny and transfer $10 at a time into my savings account. I shoveled every extra dollar, tax refund, and side income I made.
The only “big” contribution I ever made to my emergency fund came from my tax refund. Everything else was small. But do you know what happened? That account grew to several thousand dollars – enough to help me feel financially stable.
A Millionaire is Made $10 at a Time
Mr. Money Mustache has a great article A Millionaire is Made Ten Bucks at a Time (a good read if you have time.) And it’s true.
Not having a ton of extra money to save each month doesn’t make saving pointless. Those small amounts saved consistently over time will add up to something big. And one day you’ll log into your savings account and feel proud of the amount you’ve saved for yourself.
So, start saving what you can now – even if that’s only $5/week. Your future self will thank you.