Archive | Saving

Getting Started With Savings
I recommend maintaining three distinct types of savings accounts: an emergency fund (with 3-6 months’ worth of essential living expenses), a big-ticket item replacement fund (where you save for your next vehicle or to pay for a new furnace), and a periodic bills and expenses fund (where you save each month for bills and expenses that you’ll have to pay sometime in the year, such as an annual life insurance premium or Christmas gifts). You could open 3 separate accounts. Or, I use Capital One 360, where one account can be set up with numerous sub-accounts.

Piggy Bank2

Pay Yourself Second

Of all the things you can do with money, few are more boring than putting it into a savings account, right? Spending it?  Now, that’s fun.  Investing can be enjoyable, too.  But parking some money in an “interest-bearing” savings account where $1,000 may turn into $1,001 in a year’s time?  Who needs it? You do, […]

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Save Vs Spend Two Way Street Signs Point to Fiscal Responsibilit

Navigating The Mixed Messages Of Our Consumer Culture

If you’re really paying attention, life can be a very odd experience.  Especially when it comes to money. For example, in troubled economic times, front-page newspaper stories regularly quote economists expressing concern that the personal savings rate is going up. I still vividly remember reading one such story during a previous recession.  I had to […]

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Stack of money

Earning More Interest Through CD Laddering

In this era of microscopic savings rates, one way to squeeze a little more interest out of your savings is what’s known as CD laddering. What is a CD? A CD is a certificate of deposit.  It’s a low risk savings vehicle offered by banks, credit unions, and brokerage houses.  You agree to keep the […]

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Portrait of a wacky man staring at dollar bill on white backgrou

Nobody’s Fool

“Of what use is money in the hand of a fool, since he has no desire to get wisdom?” – Proverbs 17:16 No one wants to be thought of as a fool – not on April Fool’s Day, not at any time. The Bible uses that strong term only a handful of times in regard […]

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Two Piggy Banks

Why Two Savings Accounts Are Better Than One

Interested in dialing down your financial stress and making your finances run more smoothly?  Open and maintain two savings accounts. Savings Account Number One: An Emergency Fund During the early days of the recession, I worked with the market research firm Synovate to conduct a national survey (See “Tough Times Call for…”) asking people how […]

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Piggy Bank

Can’t Build Savings? I Say, You Can

The New York Times recently ran a series of six essays offering various explanations for the generally poor job we Americans do with savings. One blamed the disappearance of defined benefits plans, which, without any conscious effort on the part of workers, provided a steady income in retirement.  That same writer dismissed the efforts of […]

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Financial Regrets: Who Hasn’t Had a Few?

The personal finance blog Watson Inc asked a great question recently: what do you wish you had done differently financially? The author named four of his own financial regrets: financing a car, taking out too much in student loans, not getting started with investing earlier, and not delaying grad school until he could better afford […]

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