This year’s theme for America Saves Week is “Set a Goal. Make a Plan. Save Automatically.”
It’s more than just a theme, though. It’s a simple set of instructions to help you save successfully.
Step 1: Set a goal
Before you set out to save, have a goal in mind; know what you’re saving for, and your savings will have a purpose. If your are firmly committed to reaching your goal, you’ll be less likely to draw money from your savings and thwart your own success.
Step 2: Make a Plan
After you’ve come up with a worthy savings goal, then you need to make a plan for how you are going to save. An important first step for this plan is to stop borrowing with credit cards. Then work to pay down your high-cost debt. Talk to a credit counselor for free if you need help creating a payoff plan for your credit card debt. The next step is to create a budget to help you control your spending. Check out our Budget 101 course here in the FIT Academy for budgeting basics.
Step 3: Save Automatically
A crucial part of saving is where you keep your money. A savings account, money market, or other savings vehicle is a must. If you use direct deposit for your paycheck, many employers allow you to divide your wages into different accounts. Take advantage by putting part of your pay into a savings account. If possible put your savings fund in an entirely separate financial institution, like an online bank or local credit union. The idea is to make it a bit less easy and convenient to cash out those savings so they’ll be more likely to stay intact.
Remember, we have many free courses and materials that can help you take control of your personal finances, and our blog is regularly updated with tips and advice that can help you stick to your savings plan or adjust it if your circumstances change.