Has your savings run dry? Maybe you had to pay the bills after the loss of income or your car needed an emergency repair. Or maybe you never had an emergency savings fund. Whatever your situation may be, you can still get saving. It may sound difficult to start from scratch, but having an emergency fund is a must-have safety net to fall back on when things go wrong. And saving might not be as hard as you think. Here are some easy ways you can build your emergency savings.
1. Pay yourself first. Don’t rely on “leftover” money to fund your emergency savings. Instead, treat your savings just like any other bill, and include it as part of your budget. Immediately after each paycheck, put away a set amount of money in a savings account.
2. Put away any windfalls. Have you received any money as a gift? Or maybe your tax refund finally came. You might be tempted to splurge, but this is exactly the kind of money you won’t miss if it’s put in your savings.
3. Keep the change. Whenever you find yourself with some coins, put them away in a jar. Then, once the jar is full, deposit the cash into your emergency savings account.
4. Take up a side gig. A second job can help fund your savings. And if your schedule is tight, you may still have opportunities with at-home freelance work.
5. Sell some stuff. Sift through your old clothes, outdated electronics, and other items that you no longer use. Selling them online or to a consignment store could help bring in a few extra bucks.
6. Cancel subscriptions. You don’t need to cancel that Netflix subscription you use every day. But maybe you have other subscriptions you don’t use very often. Consider canceling subscriptions to cloud storage, news websites, music streaming services, and gyms that you don’t currently need. Even just canceling one $10 per month subscription is $120 a year that can go toward savings.
7. Trim food costs. If you frequently visit the drive-thru or order delivery, trim back or cut it out of your life. You can save a surprising amount of money by making your own meals. You can also trim your grocery bill by sticking to what’s on sale, going with store brands, and keeping to a shopping list.
The easiest way to save is to schedule automatic transfers from your checking to your savings account. You can set up automatic transfers at DCU in Digital Banking. Choose the amount, frequency, start date, and end date (if needed). You’ll have rebuilt your savings before you know it.