Saving Saved Me.

I am not a parent, but my parents taught me a lot. You don’t realize it… until you do. If that makes any sense.

I write this blog for everyone… single, married, parents, etc… everyone.

Financial responsibility. It’s so important. Yes, it’s not easy for those hardly making any money, I realize that. But, my parents never made a ton. My Mom didn’t work for years while she raised us. Sometimes a few hours in the school lunch room, then later, a teacher’s aide when we were in high school… but that’s it. My Dad was laid off while I was still in school, then retired.

But, boy did they know how to save money and be responsible.

I remember when my Mom quit smoking. She opened an account at a different bank. She put the money she used to spend on cigarettes into a separate account. When something came up or she wanted to buy us a gift or take us on vacation, she would always say… “don’t worry, we’ve got my cigarette money!”

Still to this day, she says it.

After college,  I worked two back to back television jobs in two different small towns. My first job, I was paid $23,000 a year and my second job paid me $19.000 a year. Yes, I was a TV Anchor. Trips to Wal-Mart usually went on my credit card, the goal was always to find an inexpensive but clean apartment, sometimes that included having roommates to cut the cost. It wasn’t easy. I knew I had to do it though, in order to climb the ladder.

Finally in 2002, I was able to make about $10,000 more and live in my hometown. Yes, I was a TV Anchor. I know so many people think it’s such a glamorous and high paying job. It can be… eventually. YOU HAVE TO PAY YOUR DUES.

My point. Balancing all my fiances and staying out of credit card debt was a challenge. I also had to keep up my appearance and clothes for this job. Once I made a little more money, my goal was to immediately get rid of my debt. I always bought a reasonable car and watched my money.

I now see, it’s because I was raised that way. Appreciate the little things. Value everything you buy with your own hard earned money.

Save up!
Save up!

I moved to Las Vegas in 2004 and as I continued to work here and get promoted, I started paying things off.

I did it. No debt.

I bought a house in 2006. Just like the rest of Las Vegas, it lost value and my home was underwater. It was a bold move for me to short sale. It meant my precious perfect credit was going to take a hit!! It was the smartest decision at the time though. I did it. I moved somewhere less expensive and pushed money aside with the difference.

I do have nice things, but it’s not out of control.I love a bargain. I use coupons when I can. I still have an old Dell PC instead of a new fancy Mac. I pay off my credit card every single month and I don’t buy anything unless I have the money.

I learned all of this from my parents.

Thank goodness.

In June, I lost my job. Unexpectedly. I have a non-compete and can’t work jobs that I have the experience for and I am good at: TV, radio, closed circuit, internet. Unless I move. But, I have responsibilities here: car and condo leases and commitments. Not to mention, I love this city.

It’s been a struggle, but I must admit, I still live pretty nice. I still don’t have credit card debt. I still pay all my bills on time.

How? I saved. I had a savings. I learned how to budget.

Recently, my car lease was up. I thought, “what will I do? I can’t prove employment.” The dealer called and said since I make all my payments early or on time, I am pre-approved. No need for an employment check.

Wow. Saved again.

I got the same car (because I liked it and there is no need to upgrade or get something different in this time when I am not working.) I am just happy I was able to get a new lease without the old one expiring or having to buy the car myself.

I guess, I feel really lucky.

One day, as I sat down and thought, “gosh, I can’t believe I haven’t worked in almost a year, yet I have been able to stay afloat. How? Ahhhh, my parents. The way I was raised, the way I was taught. Thank goodness for them.”

Teach them young. Set good examples. It has saved me. Literally saved me. You never know when things might change in your life. Never count on anything. If this blog helps just one person, it’s worth it. I wanted to tell this story because I know life gets busy and we don’t think clearly all the time. We go day to day. Stop. Look at your finances, teach your kids, and it could save you one day.

Thanks Mom and Dad!


10 thoughts on “Saving Saved Me.

  1. Fantastic post Dayna! I know you will be helping many by it; not only parents, but children and grandchildren. It’s something that even schools don’t teach! Thanks to your parents, and to you, for setting this example to all. And, I know you will be back on the air soon.

  2. It’s so true. The smart ones worry about how much money they end up with at the end of the month, not how many goods they have. If you life your life with leased cars, house payments must review your risks and take the long road. Most of the wealthy people I know are better at saving money even when they don’t have much.

  3. Good luck Dayna. Anyone would be lucky to have you. Saving is great and I tell all of my clients and friends that short sales are a great way not to be stuck in a prison of debt for 20 years. If you need anything let me know. S

  4. Me and Dad are so proud of you and your accomplishments. Its nice to hear you say that you appreciate your upbringing. I know we didn’t have much money, but we always managed. We never had cable, or expensive clothing, and vacations were in our backyard, but we were happy! You never know what life brings you…still saving my cigarette money..and no cable TV…lol

  5. I was never much of a saver. I saw something I wanted…I bought it. I soon found myself DEEP in credit card debt. My wife grabbed a hold of me and shook some sense into me. With her help, we are completely debt free, house paid off, cars paid off, etc. She has always been a saver, now she has me doing it as well. Now in our retirement, if we see something we want, we buy it….and pay cash. My parents tried their best to teach the 6 of us kids the value of a dollar. We never had much growing up, but we always had the things we needed. For years, Mom and Dad were deep in debt, even having to charge our groceries. Dad went back to school, at 35 yrs old, and got his high school diploma, and was immediately promoted and give a hefty raise. He gradually brought himself out of debt.

    1. No formula. I just push money aside to savings (I have both checking and savings in the same bank so I can easily push it over online) and leave the amount I think I will need. I pretend I don’t have the savings, unless I need it. I don’t buy what I can’t afford. I use a credit card and pay it off every month no matter what. If setting an amount works best for you, then try that too.

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