How Does the Laziest Person in the World, Jeffery Lebowski aka “The Dude, Manages His Money?

by RJ

in Money Management

”He was a lazy man, and the Dude was most certainly that. Quite possibly the laziest in Los Angeles County, which would place him high in the running for the laziest in the world.” – The Stranger from the movie The Big Lebowski

Laziness has its benefits. Especially in finance.

While watching the movie, The Big Lebowski for the 1,352nd time the other night, I wondered how the world’s laziest man, Jeffery Lebowski a.k.a. The Dude, would mange his money today?

Here are the 8 techniques I believe The Dude would use to manage his money efficiently.

One more thing before we begin. In the movie, The Dude doesn’t have a job. However, to make this post actually useful, I had to give The Dude a job.

Technique # 1 – The Dude Uses Direct Deposit

The Dude isn’t big on getting out of the house. Since the bank is not on the way to Holy Star Lanes, The Dude’s favorite hangout, The Dude uses direct deposit. This saves Dude a lot of time and even earns him a few more bucks in interest over the course of the year because he doesn’t have paychecks lying around.

Technique # 2 – The Dude Contributes to his 401(k)

The Dude once wrote a check for $.69 cents to purchase a gallon of milk at Ralph’s Grocery Store,  all because he didn’t want to go to the bank to get cash. The Dude abides by the fact that, the more loop holes he has to jump through to accomplish something; the less likely he will accomplish it.

When The Dude started his first day of work, he signed up for his companies 401(k). He was thrilled that he didn’t have to do a thing thereafter besides log in once in a while to see how things were going.

Technique # 3 – The Dude Automates His Roth IRA

The day after his paycheck hits his checking account, he has a withdrawal scheduled to his Roth IRA. The Dude loves automation.

Technique # 4 – Auto Pay Credit Card and All Other Bills

The thought of receiving a bill through the mail, actually finding where he stashed his checkbook, writing a check,  mailing the bill back with a stamp, is way too much work for a lazy guy like The Dude. Instead, The Dude has all of his bills charged to his credit card. If the company doesn’t allow credit cards, as with most utility companies, The Dude gives them his bank information and has them withdraw the bill from his checking account.

Technique # 5 – The Dude Uses Sub-Savings Accounts for Goals

The Dude’s current financial goal is to save $500. Supposedly he has an opportunity of a lifetime that he can’t turn down for $500.

To save for this goal, The Dude established a sub-savings account. He then scheduled a withdrawal of $100 a month, from his checking account to his sub-savings account nicknamed “Bunny.” The Dude is on pace to reach his goal in just five months.

Technique # 6 – The Dude Uses Target Retirement Accounts to Avoid Rebalancing Himself

The Dude wasn’t interested in learning how to rebalance a portfolio. This concept was a little too complex for The Dude. Therefore, The Dude invests in Target Retirement Funds. All he has to do is pick a fund which corresponds with his estimated retirement and he is done.

Technique # 7 – The Dude Signs up for Mint

The Dude is very thankful for Mint. With Mint, he is able to track his net worth with little work. With Mint, he sets alerts to notify him when he has overspent. Again, the Dude really likes automating things.

Is Lazy Good?

For the purpose of this post, think of laziness as getting the most reward out as little effort as possible. With automating his money, The Dude was able to reach his financial goal, save for the future, and never pay a late fee all with automation.  Not a bad start, in my opinion.

Photo by: Two Lane Blacktop

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

EricNo Gravatar December 29, 2010 at 8:41 am

What a fantastic post, it actually had me laughing out loud! It really puts into perspective how simple it can be to maintain one’s personal finance. However, I myself am not yet fully-automated with my credit card because I fear I’d overlook any fraudulent charges. I’m afraid I’ll get too lazy and stop checking my statements, so for now I pay manually, forcing myself to stay on top of things. Ideally, in time, I’ll automate and just give each statement a gander. Sounds so simple when I say it!

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RJNo Gravatar December 29, 2010 at 9:00 am

Thanks Kevin. Corrected it.

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PatrickNo Gravatar December 29, 2010 at 8:16 pm

The Dude is also ripe for identify theft and hidden fees that will go uncontested due to his laziness. Granted, if I was a business owner the Dude is my perfect customer, I would slip a few fees on his account every other month or so and make a fortune off of him.

I am not evil, I don’t even own a business, but I have been screwed over enough by AT&T adding numerous “fees” of $1.99-$4.99 a month that I feel like the expert of being fee’d off.

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RJNo Gravatar December 30, 2010 at 9:53 am

@Patrick – You can’t forget that the Dude is also at risk of identity theft because he left some business papers in his stolen car.

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NickyNo Gravatar December 30, 2010 at 10:36 am

How do i stop getting these pop-ups about your newsletter everytime i come to your page. They r annoying.

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JasonNo Gravatar December 30, 2010 at 3:44 pm

For some reason when i think of “The Dude” managing his money, all I can picture is a cookie jar and and some loose change in the couch cushions.

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Briana FordNo Gravatar December 31, 2010 at 3:44 pm

If The Dude can do it then so can I. I also use Direct Deposit and pay my bills online. I have SmartyPig for my sub accounts. I’m going to start automatically contributing to my Roth IRA too. It pays to be lazy :)

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CalebNo Gravatar January 7, 2011 at 12:37 pm

Ironically I treat my finances very much like “The Dude”. Great post RJ.

Its funny how much doing things because you are lazy actually ends up leading to a better choice.

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