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Thursday, May 27, 2010

A Savings Gimmick

This is an unusual topic for this blog.

This morning I read an article in Yahoo News about the difficulty most people are having saving for their retirement. I thought I would share a gimmick (trick, strategy) I have used to FORCE myself to save.

Each American bill in all denominations have serial numbers. If I find the number "7" at the beginning OR end of that serial number, I put it away for savings. I do this with denominations from the one dollar bill to the twenty dollar bill. I have been doing this since 1990 and have kept a record. To date, I have saved $82,030. Twice a month I make a cash deposit into my savings account.

For those who can not afford to save the twenty and ten or even five dollar bills, even saving the one dollar bills can add up. Getting into the habit will force the savings.

I am not sure about foreign currencies. Perhaps there are serial numbers on those bills as well.

Other ideas for savings:

l. Put coins into separate containers. They accumulate! Roll them (some banks have coin machines which separate the coins automatically), and deposit them in savings accounts.

2. Take a predetermined amount from your salary and deposit into savings account. If you are "living from check to check," you might decide on a small amount, but every bit helps! Save it no matter what! Pretending that the money never existed in the first place helps. Train your mind to think that the remaining amount is all you earned.

3.The bills have a single number under the serial number. The one dollar bill still has that number in the center on each side of the bill. I believe that number is the Federal Reserve distribution number. Different areas of the United States have a different number. For example, The New York State and surrounding areas receive new notes with the #2. Illinois and surrounding states are designated as #7. Most notes in a particular area have the Federal Reserve designated number for that area. (I am not really sure of Federal Reserve distribution policy but I believe this might be the case.) However, because of travel and exchange, other numbers show up as well. Choose a Federal Reserve number that is NOT your locality. In that way, you will not overwhelm yourself with bills to put away leading to an abandonment of this system.

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