Experts say that individuals should have a year’s worth of living expenses stuffed into their savings account in case of an emergency. It’s hard to imagine saving just a few months’ worth of pay–much less an entire year’s worth. However, there are some easy methods you can use to build a savings account that will continually draw interest and will be there in case of an emergency.
Do not use your change. Whenever you’re shopping and receive change back, put it in a safe place. When you visit the bank to cash your check each week, take this change and put it into your savings account. While a few dollars’ worth of change each week doesn’t seem like much, it adds up quickly. Just $3 worth of change each week will put an extra $144 in your savings account in a year’s time.
Also, when paying for items, don’t give exact change. Use whole dollars so you get more change back to add to your little stash. You can also put this into your savings account.
Check with your bank for money-saving programs. Many banks feature money-saving programs with their savings account plans. For instance, some banks place a percentage of deposits you make when you allow them to automatically remove it from your paycheck. Others will automatically take a percentage from your paycheck and place it into your savings account. This will help you save more money and build a savings account without realizing just how much money is going into it.
Sacrifice for savings. Another way to add more money to your savings account is to sacrifice something you really like each week. For instance, for 1 week instead of purchasing Starbucks coffee on your way to work, make your own coffee at home. Then, at the end of the week, place the amount of money you saved into your savings account. This can be a fun little game if you switch items you sacrifice each week. As you keep sacrificing, your savings account will continue to grow.
Sell unwanted items. You can further build your savings account by selling unwanted items you have in the house. For instance, have a garage sale once per month and place your earnings into your savings account. To make it more fun, subtract a percentage from the earnings and buy yourself a reward–even if it is only enough for a candy bar or cup of coffee.
Check into eBay as well, since there is a larger opportunity to sell items on eBay. Remember with eBay you have to pay seller fees, so only use eBay if you’re able to make more money than the seller fees you will need to pay.
Save cash gifts. When you receive cash gifts, put them directly into your savings account. Many people receive cash gifts for birthdays or Christmas. Rather than purchasing something, place that money into your savings account to continue saving and building that account.
Using the methods above, you can really build your savings account quickly.