Wednesday, May 20, 2009

10 Creative Ways to Save Money: Bank Survey

Stash away all $5 bills. Keep piggy banks around the house. Save money in soda bottles. Those are three of the 10 creative savings tips from bank customers, according to a recent survey.

Here's the item:

"A survey conducted by Huntington National Bank with more than 1,000 respondents indicates that consumers’ most popular saving method is to place a portion of their paychecks in a savings account, as soon as possible, so that they will not be tempted to spend it.

The most often used phrase from respondents was: “I pay myself first” by depositing money in a savings account before paying monthly bills. Not only do they put some of their earnings away immediately, but many also reported using piggy banks and soda bottles to collect their daily change.

Once those containers are full, they put the money in an account so that they will “not buy on a whim.” Some even go so far as to open accounts without debit card access in order to avoid impulse buying. Fifty-seven percent reported recently opening a savings account, money market or CD to help them save.

In the survey conducted from April 7, 2009 to April 30, 2009, Huntington asked consumers to complete the phrase ‘My most creative way of saving is to…’ While 30% said they deposit money in an account, the second most popular method of saving is clipping coupons (10%). This was followed by eating at home or packing lunches (5%), and limiting shopping to what you need vs. what you want (3%).

Here are 10 other popular tricks:

1. “We have piggy banks throughout the house and every coin I find in the washer or on the street is put in the piggy bank. Once full, it is deposited in our savings account.”

2. “For every dollar I spend when I pay bills, I try to save a half dollar. It sounds hard, but once you learn to live frugally, it is a lot easier than you think.”

3. “I do not spend $5 bills. When I receive a $5 bill in change, it goes into an envelope for savings. This money is deposited at the end of each month. I can save $100 to $150 using this method.”

4.“Every time I take cash from the ATM, I transfer the same amount to my savings. It was my New Year’s resolution. It works!"

5. “I have five accounts, each account has a purpose. Gas, bills, savings, Christmas and just spending.”

6. “I transfer at least half of our checking balance that remains the day before payday into our money market account.”

7. “Personally, if I do not carry cash with me, I tend to spend less on the little things like pop and snacks. I am more careful if I have to put these items on a card.”

8. “I remind myself on a daily basis that I need to ‘do without some things.’ Then I make it a game for myself to see how much I can hold on to in the span between paychecks. Then I dump that money into my savings account.”

9. “I hold an annual swap with my friends. That way we can exchange our unwanted items for other things we might need that someone else is getting rid of.”

10. “I take the stimulus money and put it into my savings account every two weeks. I didn’t have the extra before so no need to make it a part of my monthly budget.”

Sharon is the author of the Frugal Duchess: How to Live Well and Save Money and a contributing writer in Wise Bread's 10,0001 Ways to Live Large on a Small Budget.

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