San Diego Financial Literacy Center

Five Easy Tips to Increase Your Savings

Growing your savings account is always a good financial goal, so setting up a budget that allows for saving a fixed amount of money every month is key. In your budget, add an amount of money for saving and treat that like a bill that you have to pay every month. With this approach, saving can become a habit just like anything else. What do you do when you want to give your savings account a boost or decide that you want to start a separate savings account for an upcoming purchase? Below we will go over some small, less traditional ways to start saving. For most of these tips, the savings may seem small, but over time, they will add up.

  1. Round Up Every Purchase  The idea is simple: after every purchase, set aside whatever coins are returned. At the end of the day, take all of the change and store it in a container for a few months and then take them to the bank to avoid fees. Some debit cards will offer this feature and will round up all of your purchases, sending the difference to your savings account. Ask your bank if this is an option that you have.
  2. Save Money From Last Month’s Budget – More than likely you will have some money left over at the end of the month in one category or another and be able to send that money to a savings account. Sending any extra money to a savings account every month will add up fast. One idea is you can save that money for a rainy day to help reduce the effect on the inevitable unexpected expense.
  3. Recycle – Not only will recycling help out the environment, it can also help your savings account! Collect cans and bottles and take them to your local recycling center. Many times states add a fee to containers that can be recycled if you pay the fee, but if you don’t recycle, you lose out on that money. In California for example consumers pay CRV or California Redemption Value on every beverage container purchased five or ten cents per container depending on size. Take the money and add it to a savings account. Over the course of a year, the savings can be significant.
  4. Save Your Bonuses – If your job offers you a bonus, don’t add it in to your wage calculations. After all it is not part of your wage. Also, save up any holiday bonuses you receive. If you can hold back from using your bonuses, you can significantly add to your savings accounts.
  5. Save Your Savings – Have you ever noticed that through the use of rewards cards or sales you save money on almost every trip to the store? Cashiers are always happy to point out your savings on your receipt. Take full advantage of your savings and place that money into an account and allow it to accumulate. This might be a hard habit to get into but with so many stores looking to save you money, the balance in your account could grow quickly.

Having a savings account is always important, and budgeting to establish good saving habits is the  key to financial freedom. While growing your savings account, balance can earn you interest, and paying off credit cards faster will always save you more in finance charges.

If you are looking for a less common way to save some extra funds, give one or a few of the above tips a try.

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