This little trick has worked well for me and our household for many years now. It is truly a positively PAINLESS way to save money.
Now, if you must have your checking account balanced to the penny, you should stop reading now; this will make you crazy…
For every withdrawal (check or debit transaction) from our checking account, when I enter it into the checking ledger I round any cents up to the next dollar (i.e. $150.22 is entered as 151.00).
For every credit to our checking account, I round the cents down (i.e. $150.22 is entered as $150.00).
This creates what I refer to as a “cushion” in our checking account; out of sight becomes out of mind. Then in a few months, or six, hundreds of dollars have built up in the “cushion” and then it can be transferred to our savings account.
In an emergency, or in the case of an unexpected expense, the cushion can be added back into the ledger and used as needed.
I’ve been doing this for about 10+ years now and it truly is painless.
Quick tip: use a specific name to differentiate this money from the normal entries in your ledger to keep from getting confused (that’s why I chose cushion).