If it's hard to find additional savings and build up your emergency fund, you're not alone! Americans are reportedly saving less of their salaries than in previous years. According to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, personal savings rates have fallen below their historical average of 8 percent. And last year, people were only tucking away 2.7 percent, a 15-year low.
What makes this situation even more frustrating is that working families were putting upwards of 30 percent of their income into savings accounts and other interest-bearing opportunities before the pandemic. This doesn’t have to be the case!
Everyone Is Dying to Know How to Save Money Fast
The high costs of goods and services have impacted the savings accounts of many households. Get back on track by rethinking your monthly finances and following these tips on how to save money fast.
1: Learn to Budget Better
The importance of realistic budgeting cannot be understated. This financial strategy remains a foundational element if you want to save for retirement, a down payment on a home, help put your children through college or for another financial goal.
The process starts by adding up and itemizing your current spending habits. Once you grasp where your salary is being spent, make reasonable adjustments. One of the best ways to get a handle on spending and ongoing budgeting is to use templates. These 3 practical budget templates can help you balance your income and expenses to help you find areas to eliminate or cut back, saving you money.
2: Get Out of Debt
Excessive debt can make you feel like you’re drowning in quicksand. High interest rates siphon off too much of your earnings and limit monthly savings. One of the debt-reduction strategies that has proven useful involves crafting a 50/30/20 budget. The approach aligns 50 percent of your income for bills and necessities, 30 percent for things you want, and 20 percent goes into a savings account. If you feel setting aside 20 percent of your earnings is too much to start, consider the common 52-Week Money Challenge that can help motivate you to save a little each week ending in an additional $1,378 over the course of just one year!
3: Designate an Untouchable Savings Account
If one thing prevents people from maximizing their savings, it’s the ebb and flow of money. Placing 20 percent of your monthly income into a savings account is only effective if it doesn’t get withdrawn or spent. Consider opening a savings account or high-yield Term Share Certificate (or CD) designated as an emergency savings fund. You can rest easy knowing that you’ll have 3-6 months of expenses tucked away in case of a financial setback.
4: Automatically Set Aside Savings Each Month
An easy way to help you set aside money is by automating the transfer into your no-touch savings account. Ask your employer to adjust your paycheck so that 20 percent is automatically deposited into your emergency savings fund. If 20 percent is too high, after creating your budget, start at a place that works for you. Remember, any step in any amount is a step forward!
Budgeting and managing your money has never been easier!
5: Put a Spending Limit on Your Cards
Contact your credit card or debit card provider and ask that they reduce your daily limit for spending. Some providers may even give you this option as a self-service feature through their online or mobile app. In addition to having to think twice about your purchases, it may stop you from carrying out expensive shopping sprees or impulsive purchases.
6: Cut Down on Your Bills
One of the best ways to save money fast involves spending cuts. Review your monthly expenditures within your budget and look for places to reduce or eliminate unnecessary expenses. Common strategies include ending underused online subscriptions, reducing HVAC usage, cutting cable, and dining out less often. Purchasing groceries and preparing meals at home is far more economical than a fast food restaurant drive thru or running out to eat on a whim.
7: Designate No Spend Days Every Week
Retail stores came up with Black Friday and Amazon markets Prime Day. If you're serious about keeping money in your savings account, it’s time to go in the opposite direction. Consider designating a weekly no-spending day. When you commit to a no-spend day and cut out buying a coffee, grabbing lunch on the go, and doing an extra grocery run, you'll have more money to put in your savings account. You’ll be surprised at how much taking a day off from spending will add up.
8: Sell Your Unused Belongings
We could all probably benefit from living without so many material belongings. If you have items that are of value or gently used, consider bringing them to a local consignment store, hosting a yard sale, or selling them online. Anything you're able to earn from the sale of unused items adds extra cash towards building up your savings account!
9: Pick Up A Side Job
Adding income is one way to help balance out a budget! Do some research in your local community forum to help pick up an odd job, get a part-time job, or look for remote online work that you can do in your free time to earn extra income. Anything you can do to boost your savings will be greatly beneficial for your future.
Tools to Help You Save
Building an emergency fund and growing your savings is a great goal! Discover savings account options and tools to help you build up your savings:
- Savings Account, Money Market, Term Share Certificate (or CD) Options
- Budgeting Templates [FREE Printable Template]
- 52-Week Savings Challenge [FREE Printable Template]
- Savings & Budgeting Blogs
Peach State Can Help You Save
If you're trying to save money quickly, Peach State offers the tools to help you achieve your financial goals.
Our high-yielding savings accounts, money market accounts, and term share certificates (or CDs) are sure to provide a successful combination for your needs. If you don’t know where you'll be able to find savings in your current financial plan, download Peach State’s free budget templates!