Saving Money for Beginners in Personal Finance

Over the last year, I’ve been reading up on personal finance–on blogs, books, podcasts (ok that’s listening, but you get the gist).

My goal last year was to stash away 6 months of living expenses. And as of last week, I’ve accomplished that (*high-fiving myself*).

So now, my new goal is to start using the money I do have to work FOR me (not just sit in a crazy .01% return savings account like it had been… I had no idea there were wayyyyy better options ’til I started Googling!)

Now, I consider myself a fairly intelligent person and responsible with money, but it turns out I had zero idea how many financial opportunities I’ve been losing out on.

For example, for those 6 month’s of expenses I saved, I learned I could put that money into a high yield savings account. So I did my research on NerdWallet and chose Ally Bank which offers a 1% APY. This means every year that it’s in savings your moolah makes 1% and then that number gets lumped into next year’s APY. So if you put in $5,000 to this account, after 1 year your bank balance makes 1% and becomes $5,050. Then the next year it becomes $5,100.50. (As a reminder, I was making one hundred times LESS that in my previous savings account at Bank of America. So in the same $5k scenario at Bank of America, you’d make 50 CENTS instead of 50 DOLLARS! #crazytown)

So if you’re like me (aka a personal finance beginner) and you’re feeling it’s time to take your money a little more seriously, start perusing Nerd Wallet or pick up an Amazon bestseller at the library.

And to get you started here’s a checklist with pretty graphics of 29 Money Misunderstandings That Are Losing You $$.

If you’re starting a new job, here’s 4 money things you gotta do at your new company.

And here’s 10 savings oopsies you should try your darndest to avoid.

 

Lucy Ross

Lucy is the former Like a Boss Girls EIC & founder of Hello Lucy Design, a web management & design business. She has worked for the BBC in London, Nickelodeon in NYC, and Jazz Aspen Snowmass in Colorado. She is three-time Co-Director of NYU's Fusion Film Festival honoring women in media.

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