I was looking at todayâ€™s Sunday edition, a lean one at that, and as I looked at the P&G offer, I thought about that period when we were really into coupon clipping.Â Not so much now but a while back ago, it seemed like the main Sunday activity other then church and football.
When I was an independent contractor, cash flow was a huge problem.Â Essentially, being an independent contractor is like a sale representative on 100% commission pay status – no draw, no bonus, nada â€“ without a company letterhead or credibility to fall back on.Â It is the high wire act without the safety net.
In my case, the best case scenario had me paid in 120 days.Â The buyer had 90 days to pay.Â Once buyer paid in full, the distributor paid me within 30 days.Â There was a 120 day lag between closing a sale and getting my cut.Â And yes, I spent time chasing down past due receivables.Â Not really fun.
So, on the home front, we did a lot of coupon clipping.Â And we had to save.Â But saving on regular basis when the inflow of cash was irregular always proved to be challenging.Â So, here is some of what we did:
- Buying Sale Items
- Receipts always showed what we saved.Â That amount always went into the piggybank.
- No allegiance to any particular retail store or supermarket â€“ whoever had it on sale.
- Joined Samâ€™s Club
- Travelled a lot of miles.Â Again, the difference in savings between Samâ€™s Club gas and regular gas station went into the kitty.
- Guessitimated savings and into the piggy bank.
- Sunday coupons
- You guessed it, went into the kitty.
- I would guess only about 25% of the coupons were actually needed items.
- Even today, my library card is gold.Â
The point here is that the money we saved from coupon clipping and smart shopping went into our savings.Â Also, as soon asÂ I got paid, 10% went to savings and 10% went to tithe.Â Couple of times, that percentage dropped to 5%.Â But savings and tithe came first.
A perennial classic is George Clasonâ€™s Richest Man in Babylon.Â For such a short book, it is a powerful book.Â Whether you are wealthy, doing well, or just barely doing; I strongly suggest getting this book.Â It is a classic.
No biggie, just wanted to share some thoughts on how to save when going gets lean. Â Believe it or not, the lean times are when you must save and do so with diligence.Â