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  • FIRST POST
    • Sweetcake
    • By Sweetcake 13th Sep 18, 9:23 PM
    • 184Posts
    • 118Thanks
    Sweetcake
    ‘Look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves’
    • #1
    • 13th Sep 18, 9:23 PM
    ‘Look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves’ 13th Sep 18 at 9:23 PM
    Hiya. Do you agree with the phrase ‘Look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves’? If not, why? And if you do, how does that influence how you manage your finances/save money? For example, some people take part in moneysaving challenges, eg Ł1 challenge or the 52 weeks challenge or have unconventional ways of saving - eg saving all Ł2 coins or Ł5 notes. Do you do any of these or have your own unconventional ways of savings?
Page 2
    • A_T
    • By A_T 15th Sep 18, 9:03 AM
    • 521 Posts
    • 354 Thanks
    A_T
    Reminds me of British Cycling success at the Olympics. We didn't do so well due to one change, it was the aggregation of marginal gains.
    Originally posted by PuzzledDave
    that or doping
    • reeac
    • By reeac 15th Sep 18, 10:28 AM
    • 1,232 Posts
    • 499 Thanks
    reeac
    I disagree completely. If you properly monitor and manage the overall strategy the pennies are a minor irrelevence.
    Originally posted by Linton
    I agree. That's "look after the pounds and the pennies don't matter".
    • Mee
    • By Mee 15th Sep 18, 12:05 PM
    • 1,125 Posts
    • 1,056 Thanks
    Mee
    Not a phrase it's a proverb. The majority of which still hold pearls of wisdom within.

    My personal favourite is an old Chinese one.

    A man who wishes to move a mountain starts by moving the smallest stones first.
    Originally posted by Thrugelmir
    I like that one!
    Though, I suspect that is counter to the advice of getting through a job or life to do list.
    Free thinker.
    • masonic
    • By masonic 15th Sep 18, 1:14 PM
    • 9,824 Posts
    • 7,033 Thanks
    masonic
    I disagree completely. If you properly monitor and manage the overall strategy the pennies are a minor irrelevence.
    Originally posted by Linton
    Quite so, this is the polar opposite of big picture thinking.

    Once you ensure the thousands are being looked after, move on to the pounds, then the pennies. I know which I'd rather sacrifice.

    Classic example would be someone who puts all their spending on a 0% interest, cashback credit card to earn 0.5% cashback (pennies), but doesn't notice their most recent transaction exceeded their credit limit and has to pay a Ł15 overlimit fee (pounds).
    Last edited by masonic; 15-09-2018 at 1:21 PM.
    • FatherAbraham
    • By FatherAbraham 15th Sep 18, 2:31 PM
    • 870 Posts
    • 638 Thanks
    FatherAbraham
    Quite so, this is the polar opposite of big picture thinking.

    Once you ensure the thousands are being looked after, move on to the pounds, then the pennies. I know which I'd rather sacrifice.

    Classic example would be someone who puts all their spending on a 0% interest, cashback credit card to earn 0.5% cashback (pennies), but doesn't notice their most recent transaction exceeded their credit limit and has to pay a Ł15 overlimit fee (pounds).
    Originally posted by masonic
    Or someone using a 0.5%-cashback credit card, and who ends up buying stuff he doesn't really need because of the distraction and feeling good about the rebate.

    Not that I would ever do anything like that, ahem
    • atush
    • By atush 15th Sep 18, 4:57 PM
    • 17,178 Posts
    • 10,741 Thanks
    atush
    We put all our "pennies" into a charity box, and some silver as well.
    Foolish- for the charities and your taxes. fAr better to pay into charities and let them boost the money by using Tax relief.

    the OPs statemtn still holds today.

    Do you buy staples when they run out at full price? Or buy them in advance on special offer- half price or less? Do you buy expensive poncy coffees or bring your own made at home? Same for lunch?

    More the fool you.

    A whole raft of such wise spending can pay for any amount or luxuries or boosted savings for early retirement/FI
    • RichyRich
    • By RichyRich 16th Sep 18, 7:11 AM
    • 1,823 Posts
    • 2,225 Thanks
    RichyRich
    "Carefully consider the aggregated effect of smaller amounts of expenditure and the macro elements of your overall financial position will become less challenging to manage".

    Doesn't quite have the same ring, though, does it?
    #145 Save Ł12k in 2016 Challenge: Ł12,062.62/Ł12,000.00 Beginning Balance: Ł5,027.78 CHALLENGE MET
    #060 Save Ł12k in 2017 Challenge: Ł11,03.70/Ł12,000.00 Beginning Balance: Ł12,976.79 Shortfall: Ł996.30
    This is the secret message.
    • atush
    • By atush 16th Sep 18, 2:50 PM
    • 17,178 Posts
    • 10,741 Thanks
    atush
    that or doping
    Originally posted by A_T
    I dont recall any UK cycling athletes done for doping?
    • Terry Towelling
    • By Terry Towelling 16th Sep 18, 9:45 PM
    • 567 Posts
    • 476 Thanks
    Terry Towelling
    I guess the proverb really means pay attention to the details so that the bigger picture turns out right. Not only that but every pound is made up of pennies, so looking after them. effectively looks after the pounds.

    Not sure the proverb was meant to be dissected like this anyway.

    I do look after my pennies. On the rare occasion when I actually use cash, anything copper that comes my way in change goes into the charity box on the counter - 5p pieces too. So I am looking after those pennies in a different way and they soon mount up into pounds for some cause that probably needs them more than I do.

    I'm also hoping for a bit of karma too, so it is an investment.

    OP are you sure you don't write for a journal of some sort? Moneywise ran an article with almost the exact same wording as one of your threads.
    • Sweetcake
    • By Sweetcake 16th Sep 18, 9:59 PM
    • 184 Posts
    • 118 Thanks
    Sweetcake


    OP are you sure you don't write for a journal of some sort? Moneywise ran an article with almost the exact same wording as one of your threads.
    Originally posted by Terry Towelling
    Yep, I'm very sure, I don't work in any journalistic capacity, and I don't even read Moneywise I do read personal finance stuff though so I can't say that I've never come across their website.
    • dividendhero
    • By dividendhero 16th Sep 18, 10:11 PM
    • 263 Posts
    • 275 Thanks
    dividendhero
    I dont recall any UK cycling athletes done for doping?
    Originally posted by atush
    A lot of them seem to be "asthmatic"
    • atush
    • By atush 16th Sep 18, 10:52 PM
    • 17,178 Posts
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    atush
    Who are you to say they arent? I am. And my medication (when i have to take it) makes me feel ill anyway.

    Some may have alergy induced asthma. Which is higher in spring summer in the road racing season. Not on t he track obvs.

    But why UK althletes despite the numerous testing they have to do? Instead of those who are proven to be doping? Or are you just trying to be a wally?

    BTW, I am not from the UK.
    • Living proof
    • By Living proof 17th Sep 18, 12:27 AM
    • 1,373 Posts
    • 8,813 Thanks
    Living proof
    I can see the virtue of looking after the pennies, metaphorically speaking, and see that in time the benefits will accrue so that life is much more manageable and comfortable. I was put in a position about 20 years ago where I was left with only a tiny amount of money to survive, and with a young family as well. The challenge was to become sufficiently smart with the available resources to not only survive, but to move on.

    All these years later I still look after the pennies, by buying only when the price is really sharp (bogof or half price, reduced to clear, etc.) but I no longer have to. The thousands of pounds I have accrued by being frugal mean my life is less stressed and much more enjoyable. Peace of mind is something difficult to price.
    Solar Suntellite 250 x16 4kW Afore 3600TL dual 2KW E 2KW W no shade, DN15 March 14
    Mortgage and Debt Free. Unfortunately Pension Free too!
    • MisterMotivated
    • By MisterMotivated 17th Sep 18, 2:43 PM
    • 179 Posts
    • 161 Thanks
    MisterMotivated
    I strongly disagree with the proverb in the OP. The first part is okay as it suggests that you should be careful even with small, seemingly insignificant, amounts. However, the "pounds will look after themselves" bit I find really irritating. Yes, looking after the pennies by avoiding expensive coffees, etc, is good, but ultimately pointless if the cumulative pounds are sat in a basic savings account earning 0.01% interest while some current accounts pay up to 500 times that rate. Also, if I stop buying expensive snacks from petrol stations, etc, that doesn't mean I don't have to bother about remortgaging and saving Ł100+ per month against being on the SVR.


    These days, the banks (and many other companies) are fighting to milk everything they can from customers; the days of a friendly bank manager making sure your money is working hard for you are long gone.
    Last edited by MisterMotivated; 17-09-2018 at 2:46 PM.
    • Mee
    • By Mee 17th Sep 18, 4:26 PM
    • 1,125 Posts
    • 1,056 Thanks
    Mee
    So are we saying we have to be careful with the pennies as well as the pounds?
    Free thinker.
    • gallygirl
    • By gallygirl 17th Sep 18, 4:43 PM
    • 16,645 Posts
    • 109,854 Thanks
    gallygirl
    I agree and although I have enjoyed my money a bit more carelessly in the past I now live by this as I'm saving more than half of my wage each month to save up for a bigger house!
    I make pennies here and there online through swagbucks, receipt apps and QMee etc. and when the cash comes through I put it straight into my savings account.
    I sell things I no longer want on ebay even with as little profit as 50p after all fees if I would have otherwise thrown them out (and also I prefer to recycle).
    I know which supermarkets sell certain items the cheapest and stock up when I'm there.
    I rarely buy food or drink on the go and I don't have a mobile phone contract.
    I used to have a penny jar but hate it lying around and now I rarely use cash at all, only when there's a collection at work and I withdraw Ł10, put say Ł2 into the collection and then next time I'm at a self-service till I pay with every last penny in my purse to get rid of it and if the balance is more then I pay the rest with my card.
    When making larger purchases, for example a new fridge, I will find the one I want and shop around for where I can get it cheapest. If I'm spending a good few hundred pounds it's not like I can watch the 'pennies' as such, but there are still little things you can do like use cashback sites etc. and I don't think it's worth buying the cheapest fridge available anywhere if it is not what you want.
    Originally posted by rosieraspberry
    I did all this in the past....... however:
    Is your pension provision adequately funded?
    What is it in invested in?
    What is the annual charge?


    Is your current mortgage best suited to your needs?
    Are your utilities and insurances as cheap as you can get them?

    etc. etc.


    There is a real danger of concentrating on saving smaller pennies while unseen items get left unattended. I think it was Rich Dad Poor dad who pointed out that time spent clipping coupons (or the equivalent) would be better spent researching low cost index trackers etc. I remember blushing when I read it . I then rectified it, but only after a good few years of higher than necessary costs (quite horrendous in one case ).

    I'm not saying don't sweat the small stuff - it can be very motivating and I used to overpay my mortgage on an almost daily basis - but make sure the big stuff is well sweated first .
    A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort
    Mortgage Balance = Ł0
    "Do what others won't early in life so you can do what others can't later in life"
    • TBC15
    • By TBC15 17th Sep 18, 6:24 PM
    • 552 Posts
    • 282 Thanks
    TBC15
    Many a mickle makes a muckle.
    • Thrugelmir
    • By Thrugelmir 17th Sep 18, 6:39 PM
    • 59,791 Posts
    • 53,131 Thanks
    Thrugelmir
    The first part is okay as it suggests that you should be careful even with small, seemingly insignificant, amounts. However, the "pounds will look after themselves" bit I find really irritating.
    Originally posted by MisterMotivated
    For every 100 pennies you save. Ypu'll have another pound in your pocket. Ok so inflation over the years makes pennies pretty worthless. Doesn't detract from the principle though. I started my first pension plan at 17. Small amount per month. Surprising how compounding has lifted it over the years though.
    Financial disasters happen when the last person who can remember what went wrong last time has left the building.
    • MisterMotivated
    • By MisterMotivated 17th Sep 18, 9:00 PM
    • 179 Posts
    • 161 Thanks
    MisterMotivated
    For every 100 pennies you save. Ypu'll have another pound in your pocket.
    Originally posted by Thrugelmir

    I don't disagree with that. What I disagree with is the statement's suggestion that you only need to focus on the 'pennies'.


    Perhaps the proverb should be consigned to the history books as a relic of a bygone era, when the financial world was a bit simpler than it is today.
    • Wesley Donnelly
    • By Wesley Donnelly 17th Sep 18, 9:49 PM
    • 8 Posts
    • 5 Thanks
    Wesley Donnelly
    Sometimes it's a case of 'buy cheap, buy twice' for example I have a waterproof jacket that cost Ł230 bought 8 years ago that I wear every time I walk the dogs when it's raining it is the single best buy I've ever made but the initial outlay was large ( For a dog walking jacket ).
    However the majority of our food shopping is done at Aldi.
    I think it's more a case of value I.e a steak from Aldi will do the same as one from Waitrose in satisfying your hunger but cost less whilst the more expensive jacket bought after consideration of what's it's purpose is will last year's and make the initial outlay irrelevant in time.
    To sum up rather than looking after the pennies I believe it comes down to what value you get from a purchase so my jacket example at the moment has cost Ł30 a year but is still waterproof so the cost to me of the jacket decreases every year.

    I hope that makes sense.
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