Thursday, November 11, 2010

Trying to Grow My Savings

I work best when I have a goal. My super linear brain needs to have an end in sight, a point we're trying to work towards. So it's no wonder that since my savings account was just a plain old savings account, with no distinct path, it tends not to grow too much. There was no goal, no end point I was trying to reach. So, I made goals. I itemized my savings. I have specific categories for which to save. I have no idea if this is going to work, but I'm going to give it a whirl. My savings account is still just one account, but my handy dandy Excel spreadsheet has everything laid out nice and pretty. Currently, I have things broken down into these categories:

General Savings: used for when I maybe need a little extra for a plane ticket home or something similar; kind of like a small buffer to my bi-weekly budgets, just in case
Emergency Fund: this is my emergency, oh my God, I've lost my job and still need to make rent, fund
Horseback Riding: I pay for horseback riding 10 lessons at a time to get a discount, and I really dislike paying it all out of one check
Christmas: self-explanatory, however, next year I intend to have this category year round

At the moment I don't have a whole lot else I'm actively saving for. I'm sure there are some things that need some attention but I can very easily add them as I go along. My Excel spreadsheet has color coded categories and even shows me what percentage of my savings goal I have accomplished. Below is a mock spreadsheet (I'm not comfortable sharing my exact finances on my blog, even if almost no one reads it), but it will help you get the picture. No pun intended. ;)

So, my budget is not nearly this exciting but I started having fun with the colors. :) I really like to have everything literally laid out before me so I can see exactly what goes where. How do you keep track of your savings?

Disclaimer: Please keep in mind that I am by no means a financial professional or qualified to give financial advice in any way. These are simply my little opinions.. 

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