March 17, 2020
Willie Gunn
All Blogs

Savings Tips: Find a penny, pick it up. All day long you’ll have good luck!

Willie shares what us adults can learn from kids in terms of budgeting and saving.


My kids and I have a deal: If I ever see coins when I’m out running, I’m to pick them up and take them home to give to one of them. If I’m out walking, those coins go to the other kid.


It’s a pretty sweet deal for them. Whereas, for me, I have to lug around dirty coins during a long run, or embarrassingly accept the disapproving looks of strangers as I bend down in the street to pick up a ten cent coin. The things we do for our kids!


I was asked recently if I had any tips on saving for a deposit. This got me thinking. Are there any money-saving tips that I’ve learnt from my kids? Turns out there are!


Tip #1: The Star Chart Method (aka Behaviour Modification Reward System)


For some, saving can be a gigantic bore. And, if you’re not part-Scottish like I am, it can also be a very difficult chore. Behold every parent’s saviour: the star chart! For every 10 stars, our kids are rewarded with their choice of ice block. So, for every 10 weeks of diligent savings, why not reward yourself with a special treat? Before you know it, your savings account will be like the Wellington night sky—full of stars!


Tip #2: The Leaky Sieve (aka Pay Your Savings First)


One of the kids in our house has a bank account that we have nicknamed “The Leaky Sieve”.


I think the name speaks for itself in terms of his spending habits—any money in his spending account is gone quicker than you can say “Where everyone gets a bargain”!


Our solution to this was to have him put any money straight into his locked savings account, and for his mummy to give him an “allowance”.  It’s obviously not a solution for everyone, however, you may discover that there are other creative ways to increase your savings that work for you.


Tip #3: Hindsight is 2020


Biggest saving tip I’ve learnt from my kids – kids will teach you a lot, but they will take more than they give. My savings ability (along with my sanity) has been drastically reduced since having kids. I am glad to have saved up my house deposit before I decided to have them!



No investment decision should be taken based on the information in this blog alone. If this article raises any questions please contact your Financial Adviser.



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