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Having a smart savings plan can keep you steady even when times are changing, like they are right now.
Angela Moore, a financial planner, financial educator, and founder and co-owner of Modern Money Advisor, has some smart advice for saving in uncertain times. Her top tip? Automate your finances as much as possible.
“By automating it, you’re doing everything you need to do without even thinking twice,” Moore said.
Create separate spending accounts for monthly costs
If you look at your bank balance and see $1,000 sitting there, you might think it’s a good time to make a big purchase. But you’re probably forgetting about the regular expenses that will eat up that cash.
Moore advises creating a budget and then scheduling automatic transfers to individual checking accounts for each of your major budget categories. You can do this by opening separate accounts for your biggest budget categories, such as food and housing. Moore recommends an institution like Ally Bank, where you can set up multiple checking accounts without paying fees.
A designated spending account is a place to stash the funds you need for a budget category that you spend in every month. For example, if you spend $600 on groceries each month, Moore suggests automatically transferring $150 a week into a grocery account. When you go to the store, take the card for that account. This will help you stay within your grocery budget, and it also protects your grocery money from being spent on other things.
Create sinking accounts for annual expenses
“Sinking funds are accounts you