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Feature article: Budgeting & Saving


Little things add up

Brenda Procter, M.S., State Specialist & Instructor, Personal Financial Planning, University of Missouri Extension; adapted from "Small Amounts Add Up" by Sandra McKinnon, M.S., Family Financial Education Specialist, Franklin County, University of Missouri Extension


People have different priorities, and no one can make decisions for you and your family better than you can. If you are trying to save money, there is a good chance that you can find some way to do it.


Every time you spend money on something, you are making a trade-off by not spending it on something else or saving it. Only you can decide if the trade-off is worth it. Just make sure you think about what the trade-offs are when you spend.


If it is hard for you to take money out of each paycheck for savings, consider changing your spending habits. Changes in spending can free up money for things you need, for paying bills or for building up your savings. Small changes may make more difference than you think. See how small purchases can add up over time, think about your own small purchases, and make sure they are worth it to you!


Movie and video game rentals:

For one year

Rent three movies per week @ $4 each


Rent one movie per week @ $4 each


Rent one video game per week @ $5 each


One video game late fee per week @ $5 each


Soda and candy:

One can soda per day from vending machine @ $1.25 each


One bottle 1 liter soda or water per day @ $1.50 each


One large candy bar per day @ $.95 each


One large candy bar & soda/water per day @ $2.20 for both


Eating out:

One meal per day @ $5 each


Lottery tickets:

One Instant per day @ $1 each


One Instant per day @ $2 each


One Instant per day @ $5 each


Reading material:

Two paperback books per month @ $7 each


One magazine per week @ $4 each


One tabloid per week @ $1.60 each


Cable television extras:

One Premium Movie Channel per month @ $10 each


One Pay-Per-View per week @ $4 each


Personal care extras:

One tanning bed visit per month @ $10 each


One manicure two times per month @ $15 each





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Last update: Monday, September 13, 2010