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How to Save for a Large Purchase: Remember the SMART Rule

Savings Tips
Written by Super User · 31 October 2012

How to Save for a Large Purchase: Remember the SMART Rule

October 31, 2012
By Kelley Long, CPA
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There are many resources available that discuss how to save for big goals like retirement, a new car, a home, etc. But what about saving for something more immediate like a computer or piece of furniture? The same principles apply, only the end game is much closer.

Having something specific in mind is the first step to achieving any goal. Remember the SMART rule, which says that to increase the chance you'll achieve a goal it must be:
For example, let's say you've finally found the perfect dining room set to replace the hand-me-down one you've tolerated through your children's growing-up years. You've imagined how lovely the holidays will be with this new furniture in place, but you don't have the cash to buy it today. Rather than using a credit card, try this process to get those table and chairs in time for Thanksgiving dinner:

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5 Tips for Saving Before the Holidays

Savings Tips Holiday
Written by Super User · 29 October 2012

5 Tips for Saving Before the Holidays

By Lila Quintiliani, AFC®

Military Saves Assistant Coordinator

The holidays are getting closer, we just spent a fortune at the garage, and we are about to have some work done on our roof.  Money is tight, so I am trying to save everywhere I can.  Here are my personal top tips for saving:

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Delayed Spending: Savings in Disguise

Saving Spending
Written by Guest Blogger · 25 October 2012

October 25, 2012
Andia Dinesen, AFC ®

Why do you save money?  Does the image of stacks of money in a bank vault excite you?  For most, this probably isn’t true.

Saving is delayed spending.  Unless you are Ebenezer Scrooge (and you can see how well that worked out for him), you are planning to spend the money you are stashing.

Here are some tips for making that delayed spending, disguised as saving, more appealing.

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How Emergency Savings Saved Me

Emergency Savings
Written by Super User · 23 October 2012

How Emergency Savings Saved Me

October 24, 2012
by Julie Roth, AFC® Candidate
FINRA Military Spouse Fellow

Six years ago, when we were still a kid-free, two-income household, my husband and I decided to get our financial life in order.  We started with a small emergency fund of $1000.  I was amazed at the freedom I felt once we had the $1000 in the bank, knowing that whatever came up, we could afford it and could get rid of those credit cards for good this time!  This wasn’t our first time getting out of debt, but something always came up; a car repair or a move – that new house needed some new furniture to go in it, right?  This time we were done and the emergency savings was the start of a solid, long-term financial change in our life.  Living off one income, we used the other to pay off our debt and then fully funded our emergency fund to 3-6 months of our living expenses.  I thought we were set.  Now it was time to start saving for retirement and the new car I knew we would need in a few years.

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Finding Financial Help in Difficult Times

Written by Super User · 23 October 2012

The following post comes from the America Saves Blog. Follow them on Twitter and Facebook.

October 23, 2012
By Katie Bryan, America Saves Communications Manager

USA.gov launched the portal Help for Difficult Financial Times to highlight government resources that can make your life easier during tough times. As part of this effort

, they ran a poll asking: What helps you most when money is tight? 5,352 of you responded:

·    Savings 44%
·    Family 21%
·    Credit cards/loans 20%
·    Government assistance 15%
64 percent of you stated that savingscredit cards, and loans are the resources you turn to in tough times.

Given that only 15 percent of those surveyed said they turn to government assistance in tough times, USA.gov wants to make sure you know about benefits that could help you. Government assistance comes in different forms—from unemployment checks and food assistance to credit counseling and medical treatment. Here is a list of some of their most popular resources:

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Tip of the Day

  • Written by | September 30, 2014

    Rounding #debt and #mortgage payments up to the nearest $100 will get you out of debt years earlier.

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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Setting a Goal Leads to Success

Written by Super User | May 24, 2019

Growing up, Marisa’s dad had always talked about saving first, but she said she didn’t really internalize it until much later. “I was drifting along with no plan, carrying a little bit of revolving debt, saving some money here and there, but without a real plan for it.”

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How Smart Financial Decisions Can Create Opportunities 

Written by | November 22, 2019

Written by Stephen Ross, America Saves Program Coordinator | November 22, 2019

Of the many stories Military Saves shares, most describe how someone was in dire straits financially and worked their way out of it with the help of Military Saves. This time we want to highlight a different kind of story. This is a story about how responsible financial decisions can build on one another to create opportunities you thought only the super-rich enjoy.

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