How To Solve Financial Problems | Earn More or Save More?

In the field of personal finance, the lines have been drawn.  Some find themselves to the left and others on the right.  What is the best piece of advice for those dealing with financial problems?  Some people think that the way to solve your financial problems is to cut your spending so you can save more of your income.  These are the people who belong to the Savers Club.  Others think that saving is mostly a waste of time, and the prudent will instead focus on trying to earn more money.  This is the Earn More Club.

The question is – who is right?

Saving Money and Cutting Spending To Solve Financial Problems

Save More, Save More, Save More.  This is the common chant of the Savers Club.

Saving the money you already make is a fantastic way to spend less than you earn.

Every dollar you save is much more valuable than a dollar earned.  When you earn a dollar, you must take out social security tax, federal income tax, and state taxes.  In the end, there is a good chance that you are only going to bring home .70 cents (or much less, depending on your tax bracket) of each dollar you earn.

When you figure out how much you actually bring home out of every dollar you make, you will realize the true advantage of cutting spending and saving money.

Savers Club Members Will:

Advantages of the Savers Club

1.  They get to participate in a variety of activities.

The Earn More Club members work more hours to make more money, but it is often more of the same work.  However, the Savers Club members get to learn how to build new things, change oil, make their own cleaning products, and file their own taxes.  In other words, a person who does the Savers Club activities will learn a lot of new money-saving skills, and once you learn a skill, you know it for life.

2.  The Savers Club members have absolute control over their saving opportunities.

They get to ask,  “Do I want to go out to eat and spend $35.00 or stay at home and spend $7.50?”  If a person chooses to stay home, they save $27.50.  Incidentally, you would would need make about $35.00 to end up with $27.50 in your pocket.

3.  It is fun being a member of the Savers Club.

I still remember the day I walked into a second hand store that was having a $6.00 bag sale.  Everything I could fit in a huge bag for six bucks.  Being part of the Savers Club is an adventure to me.  Is there another deal just around the corner?

Earning More Money To Solve Financial Problems

Earn More, Earn More, Earn More.  This is theme of the Earn More Club.

There are some people who would rather increase their income than cut any spending.  They feel as though there is no problem that cannot be solved by a few extra dollars of income.  With a little creativity, a good heart, and hard work, many people could increase their income.

Folks in the Earn More Club typically have jobs that are open ended or offer overtime possibilities.  If their job does not afford these opportunities, they go out hunting for a second job.  Instead of counting how many beans they get to eat for dinner, they would rather work an hour later and then go out to a nice restaurant.  You certainly would never see them crammed up under a vehicle changing their own oil.

Earn More Club Members will:

  • Always be looking for the next entrepreneurial opportunity or start your own small business.
  • Willingly put in overtime.
  • Seek to maximize their earning potential without increasing their time commitment.
  • Outsource less desirable jobs to those who will work for less than they currently make.
  • Attempt to make enough money to support their lifestyle.

Advantages of the Earn More Club

1.  Earn More Club members focus on getting the highest return for their time investment.

If some people applied their effort and energy to earning more income instead of cutting their spending, they could actually be better off. As a saver, I’ve spent an hour in order to save $10.00 only to find out that I could have used my skills to make $25.00 in that same amount of time.

2.  The Earn More Club members will probably get to do more expensive activities.

These members can often be found having fancy dinners, taking vacations, and taking late nights out.  They seek to be rewarded for their hard work.

3.  They get to avoid jobs they don’t like.

Earn More Club members pay others to do things they don’t like.  If they don’t want to do their own taxes, they don’t.  If cutting the grass is burdensome, they outsource.  If someone else can handle the job, why mess with it?

Which is best: Earn More or Save More?

As you can probably tell, I am a proud lifelong member of the Savers Club.  Nevertheless, I have a great deal of respect for the Earn More folks.

Classic examples from each of these categories would be Trent from The Simple Dollar who exemplifies the life of a Savers Club Member.  Then there is Timothy Farris with The 4-Hour Workweek.  Both I assume would be miserable living the life of the other, but both also seem quite content with their club membership.

Ultimately, it comes down to your personality and disposition. I’m perfectly happy being a member of the Savers Club.  I love the thrill of saving, and I love the simplicity of the savers life style.  I’ve learned some great skills and look forward to learning how to do many new things in the future.  Others hate the idea of building their own furniture and would rather spend their time brokering their next business deal.

So, which do you think is a better way to solve financial problems?  Are you a proud member of the Savers Club or the Earn More Club?

Photo by kendrak

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  1. Adventure-Some Matthew

    Fellow member of the Savers Club here! I love learning new activities and doing things for myself. Think I learned that from watching my parents and grandparents do it.

    Ultimately, I think that mix of the two is best. Earn more so you can save more. I enjoy having the option to eat out, but overall I enjoy cooking more. I love going camping, but sometimes I want to camp in far-flung destinations. 😀

  2. I actually consider myself to be a member of both clubs. I am all for saving, but because I have dug myself into a hole with debt, I MUST find ways to earn more in order to get out of debt. Once my emergency fund is full, then I’ll be able to cut back.

  3. BD

    It depends on the financial problem. When you’re poor, you can only cut out so much. My problem is I need to earn more. I’ve cut pretty much everything unnecessary out of my life (no TV, no vehicle, no land-line, etc.). The only reason I still have internet is because I need it for my freelancing job. I can’t cut anything else out of my life, without living under a bridge…so all I can do to solve anything is try to earn more…… Which has been very hard to do.

  4. Karen

    Thanks, Bob, for a chance to win an iPAD. I skipped over it, but just saw it on the news as one of those things you might want to have this summer when traveling, especially with kids. Don’t plan on doing that, my kids are grown and gone and I only have 1 of my grandsons living here locally (he is about to turn 8), but this soon to be 56 year old gramma will be getting married in the next few months and it might come in real handy on a honeymoon!

    Thank you for your service to God and his people through this wonderful website. I enjoy all the information, daily. What a blessing

  5. Courtney

    I also try to do both to some extent, but I just wanted to add that for a lot of people ‘earn more’ is a one shot deal – I negotiate a raise or get a better paying job (or a second job). I put in the work and then reap the benefits continuously. Whereas ‘save more’ is a choice that must be made every single day. I have to decide to not go out for dinner tonight, and tomorrow, and the next day…

  6. Donna Freedman

    Certainly I’d suggest making more money if you can. But if the economy is really depressed in your area (hi there, Detroit!) you may be lucky to have any kind of employment at all.
    It is often possible to save more, however, if you’re willing to prioritize and to be inventive. Personally, my most vital money-management tool hasn’t been figuring out how to get more, but rather discovering how little I really need.
    The corollary for that is learning “to be content whatever the circumstances” (from Philippians, cut from my church program and pasted on the fridge to remind me). Members of the Savers Club are really good at that.

  7. Ben Mordecai

    Earn more by nature. Saver by necessity…

  8. Young Kilo Kijana

    what about those who doesn’t afford any thing there, how do you rate them in term of money problems?

  9. Shirley

    I am sorry to see that so many responses are in reference to learning the hard way. I did too, in a unexpected way. I was committed to being debt free. I planned, prayed, and paid faithfully toward that goal per Dave Ramsey’s counsel. My husband and I were $20,000 away from paying off our mortgage and all other debt. Then, all hell broke loose against my commitment to God. Infidelity, Spiritual, Emotional, and Physical abuse occurred, which ended in divorce. I was ordered by the court to pay my abuser $56,000 to settle our divorce. I took out a loan and paid that debt according to the Word of God. I then sold my home of 30+ years (before my marraige to him) to honor my commitment to God and to become debt free. God has been faithful….today I own debt free this 3 BR 2 Bath home God has entrusted to me. Glory to GOD!. At that time…I could not see my way through the devastation…but God is faithful. I can not say it was easy, or that I felt sure…..however…TODAY.I say….I STAND, I STAND, in AWE of YOU almighty GOD! He brought me through.! My point….Commit your way to God…and HE will see YOU through. Honestly….MOST of what we have we DON’T need..I’d much rather be FREE. DO what God said to do….and HE will see YOU through. Amen.