Having a savings account is an important of any strong financial plan but experts are saying that multiple savings accounts could be better for people who have several different financial goals.
Instead of thinking of your savings account as a place to store your emergency cash you might find it more beneficial to take full advantage of the interest accumulation options and use them to help fund a variety of different things.
Whether you are looking to buy a new car, a new home, are planning a vacation, or really do need a rainy day fund you might want to think about having a separate savings account for all of the many things you are budgeting to have and do.
Experts are saying that having collective financial goals can actually cloud your objectivity. When that happens, the goals you may have set will probably never come to fruition.
On the other hand, with savings accounts that are targeted at specific goals success is easier because you will know exactly how much money you have for every particular instance.
With special accounts you will be less likely to use your emergency funds for a big purchase, at least, according to CFP and WealthPilgrim blogger Neal Frankle.
He continues to say that targeted savings accounts help to more easily accomplish targeted savings goals because you are forced to monitor spending and minimize sprees.
He also advises, though, that you should pay off short term debts like credit cards before venturing into any big, long-term savings plans.
Greg McBride is a CFA and a senior financial analyst at Bankrate. He says that once you have balanced your budget in this way it is time to stockpile some money; six months-worth of pay ought to do.
Stick that in an emergency fund to get your savings plan started. Of course, he also advises that “Breadwinners will need larger savings accounts of nine months to one year,” to ensure they can maintain their accustomed lifestyle.
While it this plan does indeed make things a little easier, there are four other reasons for incorporating this as soon as possible.
1. Automatic withdrawals from checking accounts to savings accounts
Robert Laura, president of Synergos Financial Group in Howell, MI puts it simply: save early, often, and automatically. Feed your savings account by setting up an automatic direct deposit program every month so that you won’t be tempted to spend the money but you also won’t have to put any extra effort forth into adding money to your savings account.
Laura also says, though, that online banks usually offer free access to multiple accounts which lets you quickly transfer money between accounts with ease. Consider linking online banks like ING Direct to outside-bank checking accounts to make the process smoother, but always keep in mind that these digital transfers can take several days.
2. Savings accounts will track your goals
The purpose is to set up each account to track one specific goal. Frankle suggests using online banking tools to link bank accounts with direct savings and even Treasury bond exchange trading funds. Websites like Betterment and even standard spreadsheets will be helpful.
3. On-the-fly adjustments are easier
With separate accounts you will have an easier time maneuvering your money if an emergency should arise. You can prioritize your money and then adjust your accounts according to your goals and needs. You can break down your savings goals into daily or weekly increments, for example.
4. More benefits and options
With multiple accounts, you may also be able to take better advantage of particular savings benefits. Having too many accounts can be more difficult to track, but you may also find you’ll be able to accomplish more over a long period of time.