America Saves Blog
Tips, advice, and the latest news from the savings world.
Why do we save? Explain to your children that we save in order to get things that we will want in the future, but also to get things that we will need in the future. It’s hard to think about the future when you’re young because to most children their idea of “the future” is next week, tomorrow, or even five minutes from now. So, does a three year-old understand the concept of long-term saving? Absolutely, positively not. Or does a ten year-old understand the concept of saving? Absolutely, positively not. As a result, most adults in America don’t understand the concept of saving either. We have a very low success rate of saving in this country.
Saving money and attending college are two activities that are typically NOT thought of together. In fact, many college students might tell you that they don’t have enough money to buy a pizza on a Friday night, let alone to add to a savings account. But what if we rethink the traditional notion of “savings” to make it a goal that is a bit more realistic for this cash-strapped chapter of life?
People know that having an emergency fund and money set aside to purchase larger items is important. Even so, turning that knowledge into action can be a challenge when daily choices consume both attention and funds. That's why at the end of each month, you can end up without enough left over to save. Savers are a maverick breed. They maintain better credit scores, pay bills on time, don't pay for costly bank fees and have less stress than their spender counterparts. This article will highlight how to shift away from being a victim of savings barriers and toward bringing life to a savings plan.
By David Bakke
David Bakke writes about money topics like saving money, planning for retirement, smart shopping, and building wealth on the Money Crashers personal finance blog.
If your employer offers an individual 401k retirement plan, you should be contributing to it unless you fall into a very small exception category. The only time I would advise against participating in a company-sponsored 401k plan is if these contributions would interfere with your ability to pay monthly bills or get out of debt. Don’t invest in your future at the expense of your current situation. But if you can afford to make even a small contribution to the plan, go for it. Now that you're considering your personal retirement planning, let's address a crucial question: How much should you contribute to your 401k fund? Is 1% enough? Should it be 5%? Or 10%? Should the amount of your contribution depend on your age? Consider these five key factors.
ALL taxpayers receiving refunds can make an impulsive decision to save by splitting their refund in U.S. Savings Bonds using their tax form. With as little as $50, tax filers can save for themselves or in the name of a loved one in a safe, guaranteed, accessible, and competitive savings instrument.