Is the size of your savings not exactly healthy? You're not alone — the US Department of Commerce estimates that the average American household only saves 0.4 percent of its disposable income, which is down by more than 2 percent from 1999. Saving too little is the second worry that Real Simple covered in their March issue feature, and they suggest coming up with a savings goal and setting up an automatic deduction from your checking account to get your savings beefed up. To find out what steps they recommend to get your savings where it needs to be, just
- Make your savings goals feel intensely real: Determine what you want or need and internalize the goals so you feel like the future is now. Maybe even change your computer passwords to serve as reminders of your goals.
- Open a 401(k) retirement account: It's the easiest and smartest way to save long term. Invest wisely.
- Start a savings fund for immediate needs: Set up a specific amount to be automatically deducted from your checking account and moved into a savings account.