Saving money each month for a rainy day is the wise thing to doubt that doesn’t make it any easier. Here are a few ways to help coax more dollars into your savings account without feeling deprived.
What happens when you have $10 extra in your pocket? Unless you have a specific reason to hold onto it, chances are you’ll find something to spend it on before too long. That same thing happens month by month in your checking account.
If you’re looking for a no-fail way to get yourself to save each month, try paying yourself first. Each payday, take the money you want to save out of your checking account before you pay any bills. (You could link a savings account to your checking account so the transfers are quick and easy.)
Afraid you’ll run out of cash? As long as the money you’re saving is truly extra, you should be fine. Plus, you’ll miss the money a lot less than you might expect.
You’ll probably need some time to adjust to having less money to spend. So start small. Some people simply take a dollar bill out of their wallet every day; they don’t even miss it, but it adds up to $90 in three months.
If you’ve got more room in your budget, start with $5 or $10 a day. Each month, increase the amount by a few dollars. Maybe $5 a day hardly sounds worth it. But after just six months, you’ll have almost $1,000 saved up. That’s definitely worthwhile. When it comes to saving, even $1 is better than none.
Just like that extra $10 bill in your pocket, a savings account with no specific goals is easy to dip into. A lot of people start by saving an emergency fund of $1,000,enough to get them through a car repair or broken water heater without relying on credit cards.
You could start there, or by saving for holiday gifts, your next vacation, or even your next car. The goal can be general, but it should help you stay focused.
Your goal should include what you’re saving for, how much you want to save in total, and when you’d like to reach that amount. For example, if you start saving up an $800 holiday gift fund in April, you’ll probably want all the money saved by December. That’s about $25 a week.
Once you break it down and decide exactly what you’re saving for, the whole task feels easier.
Start! Life is full of surprises, so don’t bother waiting until everything is taken care of (because that day might not come).
Make This Work for You
If you haven’t already started, consider tracking your spending so you have a better idea of how you could try to save. Check out a high-yield savings account preferably one you can link to your checking account with an automatic transfer