We all need to figure out more ways to cut costs these days. Things are expensive and most of us don’t have all that much money. But how can we figure out the best ways to save? Which corners should we cut exactly? I mean, I have my own tips for saving money, just like I have tips for spring cleaning (seriously, is there anything I don’t know how to do? yes, so much in fact), but I am also the kind of person who spends $8 on grilled cheese sandwiches on a regular basis because they’re just so good. Also, because I have no self-control. So perhaps instead of turning to me for advice, we’d all be better off if I turned to someone else for advice and then culled that advice in a pleasant-to-read format and then released it to you where it could do some good? Sure! Why not, right?
Well, we’re in luck because a list of money saving advice—titled “Twenty Money-Saving Tips from Bankers and Their Wives”—was just released on efinancialadvisor.com. Now, this is very exciting because if anyone knows about money, it’s bankers. They have so much of it! And their wives probably know some stuff too because maybe once in awhile they get to use some of their husbands’ money? Maybe? I don’t know, I’m not really sure how that works! But I’m glad this list settles the question over whether or not any bankers are women. They’re not. They’re all men. With wives.
So what are these tips and can I follow them and end up rich like a banker or his wife? Well, one that is particularly relevant to me—and I’m sure to all of you as well—is the advice to “go on a clothes diet.” After all, you wouldn’t want to be like “Marie Douglas Davis, a former investment banker and Swedish countess [who] argued that she needed $4.5k a month to spend on clothes during a divorce case.” Cut back a little! No one needs to spend more than $3,000 a month on clothes. And if you need to cut costs in other ways, you could put your children in public school! Before you pass out from shame, just hold on a minute!” One ex-banker said he took his two sons out of boarding school and put them into the state school system.” Oh no! Are you wondering what happened to those two poor boys? Were they killed? By gangmembers? Well, no! In fact, as it turns out: “They adapted surprisingly well.” I mean, they’ll never get into a top-tier college, but whatever. Priorities, you know?
Perhaps the best advice on the list though addresses the small things we can all do to make a difference in our daily expenditures. For example, a real money-drain is dry-cleaning. But how do you get your shirts clean and wrinkle-free? Don’t worry. One former-Goldman Sachs banker has the answer, “he gets his wife to iron his shirts nowadays.” Smart. You see, “At Goldman there was a service in the basement where I dropped my shirts off for a fee, but now I ask Jane to do it for me.” What I wouldn’t give for a Jane of my own! Of course, not every wife loves being relegated to the role of housekeeper. But as another banker points out, even though his wife is “not loving it, she doesn’t want to get a job herself so is having to accept it.” Desperate times call for desperate measures.
Another cool thing to do is not treat other people well. One banker advises, “Stop carrying a wedge of cash around with you. It reduces the temptation to tip people so much.” I mean, seriously. What are you, a charity organization? Keep your wedges of cash under the mattress where they belong!
You might also consider “selling your second home.” Oh, you don’t have one? Then where is all your money going? What terrible decisions have you made in your life that have taken you to such a desperate and awful place? I don’t even want to know. If you don’t have that second getaway anymore, though, don’t blow all your money on hotels. The lists advises you to “stay with friends.” This makes sense, really. I’m sure your friends are just dying to hear how you’re slumming it by staying with them instead of “going to the Maldives for six years in a row.” And speaking of vacations, no one would ever advise you to give up skiing, but have you considered that you could just “ski more cheaply”? I know, I know. Is nothing sacred? But we’re trying to be frugal here. Every little bit helps.
One last final pearl of wisdom from the list is the tip to “have all your medical problems sorted out before you lose your job.” This way you can take advantage of the comprehensive health insurance that I’m so sure your job provides you with. Also, I’m sure that before you lose your job, you’ll have plenty of time to get every little last thing taken care of that you need to. Because, when you’re about to lose your job, what else could possibly be on your mind besides getting a cavity filled? Well, I hope this list helped you the way it helped me. The only question I have left is, Can the revolution start now? Please? I think it’s time.
Follow Kristin Iversen on twitter @kmiversen