Military Saves Blog

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Tips, advice, and the latest news from the savings world.

Eight Tips to Help You Save at the Commissary (or Any Grocery Store!)

Savings Tips Budget Spending Plan
Written by Lila Quintiliani · 24 February 2020

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the average family with two young children can spend around $1,050 on groceries per month. Food and household necessities make up a huge chunk of most military families’ spending plans, so shopping wisely can really make a difference.

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Three FREE (We Promise!) Ways to File Your Taxes

Written by Lila Quintiliani · 30 January 2020

Did you know there are ways to file your taxes for FREE? No strings attached. Free tax preparation is an easy way to save lots of cash during tax season. The average cost of commercial tax return preparation is around $220, but some taxpayers pay well above that for a simple tax return.

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Tips to Prepare You for Your Tax Preparation Appointment

Written by Lila Quintiliani · 30 January 2020

Sometimes preparing for your tax appointment can be the most daunting part of filing a tax return. We’re here to help. Use this checklist for a seamless tax preparation appointment.

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Five Things the IRS Will NEVER Do

Written by Lila Quintiliani · 30 January 2020

Each tax season, Americans are bombarded with numerous IRS scams and fraudulent schemes. There are lots of myths and urban legends floating around social media and the internet. Taxpayers should take caution and know that:

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Split It! Have a Plan for Your Refund

Written by Lila Quintiliani · 30 January 2020

Have a plan in mind when you file your taxes. If you’re due a refund, go ahead and split it up into multiple accounts (think checking, saving, and retirement or college saving account) using the 30-40-30 plan:

  • 30% of your refund to pay off outstanding debts or catch up on bills
  • 40% of your refund to pay for current expenses, needs, or wants
  • 30% of your refund to establish or build up savings. This could be an emergency fund (start with $500) or longer-term like retirement or a large purchase like a home.

Use IRS Form 8888 to split your refund in up to THREE accounts. Form 8888 can be accessed with your tax preparer during your tax preparation appointment. It’s easy to use, so don’t forget to ask if your preparer doesn’t suggest it.

PRO TIP: Add the account and routing numbers or blank checks of the accounts you are using for the 30-40-30 plan to your tax documents folder so you’re ready to fill in Form 8888 before your complete your tax return.

It’s our favorite way to save, automatically and through direct deposit.

Want more savings tips? Take the Military Saves Pledge today and then visit www.militarysaves.org for information and inspiration.

 

Tip of the Day

  • Written by Katie Bryan | April 10, 2014

    You can have an emergency fund! Here are 5 simple ways to start & maintain an emergency fund http://ow.ly/rIhlG 

Saver Stories View all »

Involving Kids in Family Finances

Written by | April 19, 2019

 

One of the best lessons we can share with our kids is about money. By middle school, kids should have a good understanding of how money works as well as the importance of saving.

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Making Saving Automatic Leads to Personal Success

Written by Lila Quintiliani | May 27, 2020

Ryan’s savings journey started when he was an active duty airman. Frequent deployments and temporary duty assignments gave him the opportunity to save. By the time he transitioned out of active duty, he had built up a healthy rainy-day fund and had started to aggressively save for retirement.

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When You Start Small, Saving is Easy

Written by Lila Quintiliani | August 12, 2019

When Attiyya first got married, she and her Marine husband had just graduated from college and were focused on paying off student loan debt. They had both attended private schools and had sizeable loans. Then three months after the wedding, the couple found out they were pregnant with their first child.

The first year of their marriage, says Attiyya, was a balancing act between paying down debt and saving for the future.

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