It’s Friday afternoon and your paycheck just hit your account. Right away, all the things that you had to say “no” to these last two weeks jump to the front of your brain. Maybe you’ll grab takeout tonight instead of cooking dinner. Those shoes you tried on weren’t that expensive, and now you’ve got some cash. You’ve got bills to pay, but there’ll be money left over and you deserve it. Then you remember that you’re trying to save a chunk of every paycheck and it suddenly feels like you just lost money.
That feeling of disappointment, of missing out, makes saving really difficult. And it’s why the best way to save money is to do it before you even see it in your account!
Take it Right Out of Your Paycheck
If you have direct deposit, where your paycheck gets deposited straight into your checking account, ask your employer to split 10% (or more, or less) into your savings account. Your brain won’t even have a chance to think about the “what ifs”.
Through Online Banking, the Contact Center, or visiting a branch, set up a transfer to automatically take a certain amount of money from your checking account and move it to your savings. Ideally, this occurs right after your paycheck comes in, but before you log in and look at your account.
Remember that this transfer will not be tied to your paycheck. If you expect a delay or change, edit or cancel your transfer.
Save the Difference
WECU’s Save the Difference program makes saving happen every day. Think of it as a modern-day change jar. Once enrolled, every purchase made with your debit card is rounded up to the nearest dollar and that extra change is deposited into your savings account. And just like with change jars, this type of automatic savings adds up quick!
While saving the difference doesn’t happen before your paycheck hits your account, it does build your savings into your everyday budget. And since it’s built into your expenses, your brain won’t have a chance to convince you that it’s optional.
The best thing about “set it and forget it” methods of savings is that all you do is set it up once. After that, you’ll save without lifting a finger.