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  • Laurie says:

    My husband and I are trying to save for our home down payment, and have been trying to decide the best options to grow our savings as we work for it. Great tips, thanks for sharing!

  • Amy says:

    If you don’t expect to need the savings for a while, such as an emergency fund, go ahead and put some in a standard savings account, like Ally (I have an acct there and really like it), but put most in liquid assets that usually earn a bit more. Betterment, for example, has this option for accounts there, and if it’s just to have it put aside and without planning to use it but needing it to be fairly accessible, this is a good option and should earn more than the 1% at Ally or other banks.

  • Johnny says:

    Hey Jessica, great advice!

    I would note that opening and personally managing a brokerage account can often prove to be very risky for someone with less experience. Of course you clearly note this, but it always concerns me to hear someone say they are looking for quick returns in the markets – your portfolio is much better built for the long haul!

    I also agree with the editor post of Personal Capital, it’s a great tool and worth checking out. If you get a minute, give EarnSmart a look as well – we can’t pay interest, but we do give you cashback for inviting friends and family which, the way it’s structured, feels pretty close (and exceeds 1% pretty quickly). We also connect our users with great deals if you’d prefer to save up to make a guilty pleasure purchase responsibly!

    • David Ning says:

      Investing more risky assets do require a certain level of competency, but start small and you can gain experience without hurting yourself too much.

      Thanks for the alert on EarnSmart. I’ll check it out.

  • Great Post!

    Savings accounts are key tools for investments. I used to keep my savings in cold hard cash in an envelope in my closet. I would add $10-20 a week to it and it was a place I could forget about the money I had. If I was ever so lucky to find a nice $20 spot in a pants pocket, in the envelope it would go. This method helped a lot, but came with caution as I was often tempted to tap into it.

    One piece of advice I would add (even applicable to short-term savers), would be to open an online savings account. Ally Bank currently offers 1.00% interest and has only increased since I opened my account three years ago. Keeping my savings at a different account (such as online) makes it seem much further away and allows for that “can’t touch it” feeling we should have for our savings accounts.

    • David Ning says:

      The “further away so you can’t touch it” feature sounds like a small benefit but the fact that you don’t see that money often can be a real money saver. I second the suggestion to open an online savings account, because the 1% interest, though small, is the best deal for short term savings when comparable investments like the treasury is yielding much less.

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