Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Saving for Emergencies

Maintaining an emergency savings account may be the most important difference between those who manage to stay afloat and those who sink in debt. An emergency savings fund consists of a small amount of money, usually in a savings or share account, that you do not have easy access to. Keeping $500 to $1,000 of savings for emergencies can allow you to easily meet unexpected financial challenges such as:

         repairing the brakes on your car;

         paying for a visit to the doctor when your child has the flu;

         covering the dental expense of filling a cavity;

         paying for a parking ticket; or

         flying to visit a sick parent.

5 Ways to Save $500 to $1,000 for Emergencies

1.       Save Automatically. Have part of your paycheck automatically deposited into a savings or share account or set up regular transfers from your checking to your savings account.

2.       Save your loose change. Putting aside fifty cents a day over the course of a year will allow you to save nearly 40% of a $500 emergency fund.

3.       Make your monthly credit card payment on time. The $30-35 you save by not being charged a late fee each month on one card would save you most of the money you need for $500 in emergency savings.

4.       Save a portion of your tax refund.  Use tax form 8888 to split your return.

5.       Bring lunch to work. If buying lunch at work costs $5, but making lunch at home costs only $2.50, then in a year, you could afford to create a $500 emergency fund and still have money left over.

Where to Keep Emergency Savings

It’s usually best to keep emergency savings in a savings or share account. These types of accounts allow you to access to your money when you need it.  Keeping your money in a savings account makes it much less likely that you will use these savings to pay for everyday, non-emergency expenses.

Are you ready to set your goal?

America Saves, a non-profit that encourages individuals and families to save money and build personal wealth, can help you develop your goals and take action. When you join as a saver, you’ll receive the following benefits:

·         Free subscription to the quarterly American Saver newsletter.

·         Free monthly e-mail newsletters with savings advice from national experts.

·         Free access to the members-only Savers Tracking Tool to help you reach your goals.


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