The idea of saving money and investing in your future is an admirable thought. An individualized plan puts you in charge of reasons to save and how to do it. Several steps and rules will make it easier to accomplish. Like most plans, you’ll want to succeed and move beyond the original goals. The following guidelines will help you realize your objectives.

List expenses.

Expenses include more than monthly bills. They encompass every cent spent each month, including trips to Starbucks and the cost of an oil change for the car. Track the information for two months t because estimating what’s spent leads to unrealistic goals. Tracking what you spend also helps decide how to cut costs so you can save more. It’s helpful to put them under categories like entertainment, mandatory (such as insurance and rent), and incidental.

Prioritize the budget.

Most of us have a specific amount of income each month. Compare it to your monthly expenses.  If you discover you’re using a credit card to handle some of the costs, decide which of those expenses are important and which can be stopped. The interest you avoid can be converted to savings. Divide quarterly and annual expenses, such as vehicle registration and taxes, into a monthly amount to be set aside until the payment is due. You may even decide to create a savings account for that!

Choose a workable savings plan/s.

Don’t give up because the”recommended” amount for savings isn’t available in your disposable income. Once a savings habit starts, it’s hard to stop because it shows the plan is doable. Shop around to find the ideal savings locations. Credit Unions, national banks, and savings & loans are examples. Talk to the customer service representatives at your own bank. Add value to your goal with a no-fee account.

Short Term Plan

Secure the money you set aside for short-term goals, such as a down payment for a car or next year’s vacation. Several kinds of savings accounts are FDIC insured, protecting deposits against loss up to a specific dollar amount. Avoid the temptation of withdrawing savings with a CD that is secured by FDIC. The time frame, interest rate, and deposit amount are set at the start.

Long Term Plan

Activate deposits for long-term goals as disposable income increases. AN FDIC-insured IRA will supplement your other retirement contributions. Investing in mutual funds and stocks carries a risk because the market has no guarantee of performance and FDIC does not insure this type of investment.

Take advantage of matched contributions from your employer to pension and 401(k) plans. Even if retirement is in the distant future, it is a painless way to watch the balance grow swiftly in support of your future goals.

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