Could you cover an unexpected $400 bill?
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Nearly half of all Americans couldn’t cover a $400 emergency, according to a survey by the Federal Reserve. Whether it is an unplanned medical bill, a broken car, or an emergency plumbing visit, you never know what twists and turns life will bring. For the 76 percent of Americans who live paycheck-to-paycheck, saving money can seem like a dream that is out of reach. Beginning to save may be difficult but is important for your financial well-being and peace of mind.
No matter where you are in life’s journey, you can make a plan to start saving. Here are some easy tips to get started:
Make a budget
It’s hard to know where you can save money if you don’t know where you are spending it. Once you have an idea of your monthly bills, can you find other areas of spending traps? There are several ways to be able to track your spending. Numerica checking account holders can create spending categories within your account. To find more information on how to enable that feature log into Online Banking and click on the Reports tab.
Look for savings
If you’ve been tracking your spending you might be able to see areas you can tackle right away. It doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy that 20 ounce, iced, fat-free, sugar-free, extra shot, light ice, no whip, upside-down, macchiato ever again, just that you should enjoy it in moderation. Think about other areas you might be able to save. Could you get a better rate on auto insurance? Is there a coupon for the purchase? Ask yourself if it’s a need or a want. When you find savings roll them into your savings account and watch it add up!
Set your savings goal
If you don’t have a savings account, opening one is a great first step. A good rule of thumb is to save 10 percent of your paycheck. However, Numerica’s golden rule, for savings and retirement, would actually be closer to 25 percent. Start small and build from there. This is your goal. Make sure it is realistic, measurable and achievable.
Have a designated account for savings
When you just earmark money it’s easy to spend it other places. By opening a savings account, you set the expectation to save. And, when you have money automatically deposited, it’s even easier. Savings accounts can also earn you money on your balance, essentially working for you.
It’s never too late (or too early) to start saving. Knowing you have money for those unexpected expenses goes a long way to reducing stress so you can continue to live well. When you have your plan in place, take a look at Numerica’s saving options.