One way to pay for big ticket items is to use a credit card and make monthly payments. However, more Americans are looking for ways to reduce debt and keep their credit balances low. The best way to purchase a big item that you need is to take advantage of your credit union in New Bedford and start saving money in your credit union savings account, much the way that a squirrel might store nuts away for the winter. Putting a few dollars in at a time can add up, and there are some easy ways to cut expenses from your monthly budget to help you invest even more into your share savings. In addition to basic savings accounts, there are money market accounts, certificates of deposit, and other savings opportunities that you can use to your advantage at St Anne Credit Union in New Bedford.
Step One: Identify a Need
So what is it that you need to buy? Are you contemplating a brand new refrigerator or do you need to replace your current home computer? What about something even bigger, like a new car or a down payment on a new house? Whatever it is that you want to buy, you can reduce the stress of making such a big purchase and avoid creating debt by simply saving for your purchase in your credit union savings account. Figure out what you want to get, shop around online for prices, and establish exactly how much money you will need to make the purchase. If you will also need to buy additional accessories or extra items to go along with your purchase, make sure to save for them as well, so you can pay for it all at once.
Step Two: Go Over Your Budget
Sit down and make a list of all your monthly expenses. How much you spend on rent or mortgage, utilities, groceries, gasoline for your vehicle, insurance, entertainment – write it all down. One way to determine how much you are spending is to go over your checking and savings accounts at your credit union in New Bedford. You can take advantage of online banking tools for St Anne Credit Union in New Bedford or just go over your monthly statements. You will be able to identify charges for necessities and extras so you can see what can be reduced or eliminated to help you achieve your goals.
Step Three: Cut Spending
How much do you spend each month on fast food, coffee shop lattes, treats or other “extra” activities that are not actual necessities? At $8-10 for the average fast food meal, you could reduce monthly spending on lunches at work simply by brown bagging it one or two days a week by as much as $80-100 a month. What about those iced coffees? At $5 each, a daily habit Monday through Friday can add up quickly to $100-125 a month. Start making your morning coffee at home and save the stress of waiting in line and put more money into your share savings account instead.
Step Four: Consider Separating Your Savings
It can be easy to spend money that is connected to your main share checking account. Consider opening a separate account that requires a bit more consideration before taking the cash out during the saving period to spend on frivolous items. Keep your “emergency fund” money in your regular credit union savings account and move your “big purchase savings” to a money market account or certificate of deposit to earn additional interest. By separating these funds, you reduce the chance of accidentally spending more than you should on things that you don’t need. This approach can help you maintain your focus on the end result.
Step Five: Make Regular Deposit
How often do you get paid? If you get paid weekly or every other week, make sure to deposit cash into your savings whenever you get paid. After you pay your bills and see how much you have left, deposit a good deal into your share savings. Small deposits of $25 and $50 can add up quickly over time. If you can save more than you anticipated, go ahead and do it. However, if you can only put $25 into your credit union savings account, you should still do it so your balance will keep growing.
Visit St Anne Credit Union in New Bedford
Whether you are already a member or are considering joining our credit union, make sure to stop by and learn all you can about our credit union in New Bedford. Since 1911, St Anne Credit Union in New Bedford has provided quality services to our members. To join, you must live or work in either Plymouth or Bristol counties. Give us a call at 508-993-0011 to speak with one of our customer service agents or stop by our location on Union Street to join in person!