Who doesn’t love FREE Money and having a secret stash of money? Emergency prepping includes being financially prepared for economic emergencies like losing your job. What are some ways to get free and a secret money for a rainy day?
The ideas mentioned on this post are ways that you can accumulate funds without thinking about it. They are not meant for a quick return, but will certainly make a nice surprise when it’s time for a vacation or a special treat.
Your 401K – Free Money From Your Boss
Employer matched 401K plans, is essentially FREE money. How does it work?
For example, let’s say your employer offers a 100% match on all your contributions each year up to ta maximum of 3%. Your annual salary is $50,000 and you contribute 3% of your salary towards your 401K or $1,500. This means that your employer will match their 3% or $1,500.
FREE MONEY for your retirement!!!
If you are not taking advantage of this benefit, you are throwing money out the window! Don’t leave money on the table for someone else to take. Try to put the maximum contribution and get that free money! That is $1500 FREE MONEY!!!
SO GIVE YOURSELF A RAISE!
The earlier you start planning for your retirement and contributing funds into a 401K, the better return you will have when it’s time to retire. Most people cannot afford to live with just their social security income. If that is your plan, then you will have to reduce your standard of living when you retire or plan to move to a different country when the US dollar goes a long way.
Let’s say your current average take home salary is around $3,000 per month. Can you afford to live on the average social security check of $1,537?* I couldn’t. So definitely, having a 401K or alternate retirement income is a must.
*As of March 2021
Acorns -Your Secret Pocket Change
Acorns is one of my favorites secret savings accounts. Acorns is a microsavings app that rounds up your purchases to an even number and investing your spare change.
As an example, if your used your debit card to purchase an item worth $11.50, Acorns can round up to $12 and deposit the extra .50 cents to an investment account.
In addition, if you use your Acorns-linked debit or credit card at a select partnered retailer, that retailer will invest a bit into your Acorns investing account.
PLUS at the time of this writing, if three if your friends start new accounts, Acorns will invest $350 into your own account!
What is Albert Savings? Albert Savings is an automatic savings feature that saves money from your linked bank account and automatically saves a certain amount from each week.
For example, you can set up automatic transfers from your bank account each paycheck. Kind of like “paying yourself first”. You can pay yourself $10 or more dollars per paycheck or by-weekly and at the end of the year you will have saved about $250.
You can also set up an investment account and purchase in small increments stock from major companies such as Apple, Amazon, and many others.
To earn the FREE MONEY, you can invite friends to join Albert Savings. As of this writing, you can earn a bonus of up to $150 for each friend that joins. This bonus will change during the year.
For more information about Albert Savings, please follow this link.
For more information about emergency prepping on a budget, check out my post, No Money, No Problem.
Multiple Savings Accounts
I’m sure you’ve heard to always pay yourself first. Or perhaps you want a separate vacation fund. Or you have a major bill once the year like your paying your property taxes. How do you save for it without cramping your style?
The answer is to open multiple bank savings accounts. I have a savings accounts nicknamed: vacation, condo expenses (property tax, annual condo fee and insurance), and general savings.
For my big annual expenses related the condo, I break it down by paychecks and automatically transfer equal amounts to the condo savings every pay check. By the end of the year, these expenses will be less painful to pay.
For example, my Florida condo insurance costs about $1800 per year (Yes, it’s not cheap in Florida any more!). I get paid weekly. If I divide $1800 by 52 weeks, this means I will need to set aide roughly $34 per paycheck to cover the annual premium. Again, less painful to pay!
For my vacation, again I transfer $$ from each paycheck to my vacation fund. Same with general savings. What I leave in the main checking account is what I use to pay my monthly bills.
How many special piggy banks will you need?
My Master Plan Fund
A mutual fund is an investing vehicle that owns a portfolio of assets and sells shares to investors. By purchasing shares of a mutual fund, you’re purchasing a right to a portion of the returns earned by the fund’s portfolio of stocks, bonds and other assets.
This is where I put the bulk of my savings.
My Plan-A “master plan” is to hopefully take an early retirement and move to a country where my US $$ goes a long way and I can live like a rock star!
My first choice is Colombia, South America. Not only is Colombia a beautiful and safe country to visit, it is also super affordable! In a future post I will discuss some of my common expenses when I visit.
Plan-B “master plan” is my emergency fund in the event I lose my job or have another emergency expense.
My Master Plan Savings
I opened a mutual fund account where I primary invest monthly in stable markets like municipal market bonds and growth funds, even play with a little aggressive growth funds. Most importantly, your investment can be totally liquid and available to you when you need it!
The key is to have a financial adviser whom you can trust and who stays on top of the market trends. If you do not have a trusted adviser, I highly recommend my agent, from NYLIFE Securities LLC. From Life insurance, to retirement planning and Long Term Care insurance – let my guy help guide you through life’s financial challenges.
Emergencies are not just natural and man made disasters. Economic emergencies can include auto repairs, major home maintenance repairs, a major injury or illness and you’re unable to work, loss of employment -anything causing an unexpected economic loss.
Is your bank account ready for such emergencies? If not, it may take some effort on your part to save for a rainy day. Picking up your Starbucks on DD’s coffee every morning, or buying take out multiple times per week can add up. How much effort will it take to prepare your coffee at home or pack a lunch?
Challenge yourself to eat more home cooked meals and see how much you will save after just one week. See if it is worth the effort to save for your rainy days ahead.
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