Whether you’re saving for a car, computer or a new condo, a little planning can go a long way in helping you make your dreams a reality. With these direct and easy steps, big ticket items don’t have to be limited to big dreams:
- Set a Goal. Don’t just dream about it. Make it a reality by setting and committing to a savings goal.
- Do Your Research. Know how much what you are wanting costs. Can you find it cheaper somewhere or else? Can you get it used? Do you need to have additional funds for maintenance, insurance or other fees?
- Make a Plan. Once you know your goal and all of the costs associated with that goal, it’s time to build a budget. By understanding all of your income and expenses, you can start to have a clear picture how much you can reasonably save each month.
- Automate Your Savings. Start a good saving habit by automatically moving the predetermined amount into your savings account each month. Employer-based direct deposit can move the amount straight from your paycheck into your savings account or you can set up an automatic transfer through your bank.
- Earmark windfall income. Depending on how long you’ve determined it will take to reach your savings goals, you may want to plan to move any additional unbudgeted income directly into savings. Things like end of year bonuses and tax refunds are great ways to fast track your savings plan.