Let's talk about something that can be as crushing as it is rewarding: our bank accounts. A healthy bank balance isn't just a number, it's a source of pride and a way to provide financial stability for yourself and your family.
Building up savings can seem impossible, especially when you're living from paycheck to paycheck. But the truth is, there are plenty of creative ways to do it.
Start Small and Think Big
You already know that you should be putting money aside for a rainy day, but sometimes it's hard to think of good ideas to get started. The good news is that you don't have to completely overhaul your finances to get ahead.
Start small by looking at your budget and seeing where you can trim expenses and free up some extra cash. Think about switching providers for things like your phone or internet bill or going through each line item one by one and seeing what you can cut back on. Even small changes can make a big difference when it comes to freeing up enough money to start building up a savings account.
Once you've identified areas in which you can save a bit of money, you'll need to think big when it comes to deciding how and where to save those funds. Consider opening multiple accounts that have different purposes so that you can easily divvy up the funds for different goals or emergencies.
The Power of Rounding Up
You can easily grow your savings account when you use technologies like rounding up your purchases. Bank Independent offers the Smart Swipe option on your debit card purchases.
Smart Swipe is an automated savings program for simple, everyday savings. Each time you use your Bank Independent debit card, we round up change from your purchases to the next dollar and deposit that into another Bank Independent account of your choosing.
For example, you go to the grocery store for some eggs and buy them for $3.50. If you set up an automatic transfer between your checking and savings accounts, the extra $.50 will go straight into your savings.
One of the best features that programs like Smart Swipe offer are that they take the human element out of the equation. You don't have to remember to do it on your own each time.
Cut Spending Without Feeling Deprived
Saving requires more than just slapping money in a jar every month. It also requires examining your expenses and cutting costs where you can. To make the most of your budget, try the following strategies and boost your bank balance with minimal effort:
Track your expenses
Before you can start reducing expenditures, it's important to understand where your money is going each month. Download an app to track all your purchases or use a spreadsheet to document every expenditure in detail. Once you have a clear picture of what's coming out of your account and when, you can begin to identify areas where savings could be made, or which purchases are counter-productive to your goals.
Prioritize needs over wants
Cut out luxury items like restaurant meals and expensive vacations while still allowing yourself wiggle room for smaller treats here and there. Ask yourself questions before making purchases like, "do I need this," "can I wait until next week/month," or "am I being frivolous?" Adopting this practice will ensure that you don't break the bank with unnecessary purchases. Instead, it will help you focus on saving for more important items like a down payment on a house or car.
Reducing spending doesn't have to be a manual process. To reduce unnecessary expenses without feeling deprived, set up automatic deductions from checking accounts into savings accounts so that you always have an emergency fund handy for unexpected costs like car repairs or medical bills. This will ensure that money is always being saved, even if it means adjusting other areas of spending accordingly.
Make Use of Financial Rewards Programs
Reward programs are one of the trickiest ways to start growing your savings account. You see, with reward programs, if you play your cards right, you can get cash back or discounts from purchases you make.
Before jumping into a rewards program, it's important to know how the program works and what you can earn back from different types of purchases. For example, some programs may offer a higher percentage back when making specific types of purchases.
If you find yourself spending more than usual in one category, you can use that as an opportunity to join a rewards program and start rolling those cashback points into your savings. Just make sure the program is reasonable and doesn't involve splurging unnecessarily to build up those points.
Rewards apps that can help you save money are available as well. So next time you're at the grocery store, pull out your smartphone and check for special offers available in stores near you. Chances are there may just be something special waiting for you that could help boost your bank balance!
The Benefits of Setting Goals
When it comes to saving money, setting goals can be one of the best ways to ensure success. When you set a goal for how much you want to save and when you want to save it by, you give yourself something to work towards. Here are some of the benefits of setting specific savings goals:
- A defined purpose: Setting a monetary objective gives you a specific purpose for why and how much you’re saving. This ensures that you have clear direction on what needs to be achieved and helps keep you motivated throughout the process.
- A plan of action: Establishing your objectives provides guidance on how much money should go into your savings account each month and allows you to be more thoughtful about how your money is being spent so that it reaches its intended destination.
- Increased discipline: Having goals incentivizes you to practice financial discipline by avoiding impulse purchases and unnecessary spending so that your hard-earned cash can reach its ultimate goal.
- Accomplishment satisfaction: Reaching savings milestones increases feelings of accomplishment which encourages a healthier financial lifestyle and promotes long-term sustainability without burning out mentally or financially.
Setting goals is an important part of the overall process of growing your savings account.
Building your savings doesn’t have to be an overwhelming task that requires an extended period of time. There are several smart strategies you can use to create a healthy savings account in a relatively quick timeline. Whether you make a budget, take on a side hustle, or use an app to track your money, there are numerous methods to build your savings.
You can also look to innovate and incorporate other enterprising ideas to help you grow your savings. With a few simple adjustments, you can watch your bank balance climb without compromising your financial security. And, soon enough, you’ll be in a better position to realize your financial goals.