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Savings Strategies

Financial Advent Calendar

Advent calendars are all about getting little prizes over the course of a few days or weeks with the end goal of celebrating a larger event on the last day. Your financial health should feel exactly like that. Taking small, intentional steps toward your larger goals will help you achieve them faster and feel good along the way.

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How Emergency Funds Work In Practice

If you depleted your emergency fund in the last year or so, don’t panic. We build up emergency funds so they’re there for us when we need them. And if you’ve never had an emergency fund, you absolutely need one to protect yourself if something unexpected happens. Because inevitably, it will. Here’s what you need to know about the care and feeding of your oh-so-important emergency fund.

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“Trick” Yourself Into Saving More

Piggy bank overflowing with quarters

Saving for retirement doesn't have to be a daunting task. By breaking your goals down into smaller, daily targets and automating contributions, it can be achievable for any budget. Research shows that by making it easier to start saving, more people are able to take the necessary steps towards achieving secure retirements.

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How To Create A Budget

Once you’ve decided it’s time to create a budget, or get back on track with an updated spending plan, you’ll have more than a few options to choose from. You can go old school and use notebooks, or spreadsheets to stay organized, or you can grab your laptop or phone and investigate the budgeting apps available today. Both can be effective ways to keep track of your spending and saving as you begin the extremely satisfying task of telling your money what to do every month.

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Why You Need a Budget

A whole slew of Americans have no idea how much money they spend in a month. They also have little idea where their money goes. Yes, taxes and other deductions take a chunk right off the top of their paychecks, but the rest seems to fly out the window. If this sounds familiar, the good news is that it’s not just you. There is a way out of this financial fog into a space where you control your hard-earned money. It’s called a budget. And you need one.

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New Psychology of Spending

Guy swiping his card at a cafe

Many of us understand that personal finances are much more than income and expenses. Our spending habits, which directly impact our personal bottom line, are also affected by our emotions, values, and desires. This is known as the “psychology of spending.” Learn more about making a move from maximizing to minimizing spending.

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Top Ways to Save Money on Gas

Looking to save money on gas? You're not alone! In today's economy, everyone is looking for ways to pinch pennies. You can save money on your fuel costs by making a few changes in the way you drive and how you buy gasoline. Check out these top tips for saving money on gas. You'll be surprised at how much you can save!

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Ways to Save Money on Your Energy Bill

The warm weather months are coming up, and that means one thing: it's time to start figuring out how you can save money on your energy bill. With the summer months being notoriously expensive for cooling bills, there are many ways to cut down on utility costs without sacrificing comfort or convenience. Here are ten ways to save money on your energy bill each month!

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How To Plan For Financial Emergencies

Emergency Savings Note

Most of us will have to deal with a financial emergency at some point in our lives. They can happen at any time and rarely come with a warning. Whether you have one year or one week to adjust to such monetary upheavals as divorce, medical emergencies, military deployment, or loss of wages, you may be able to sail through financial foul weather – as long as you PLAN for it.

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Navigating Reduced Income

Crunching numbers on a calculator

Many Americans are facing drastically reduced income due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Some people have lost their jobs, or have reduced work available to them. Below are our tips on surviving on less income.

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Build an Emergency Fund

Are you prepared for an emergency? If not, you need to start building an emergency fund today. This is money that you save specifically for emergencies. When something unexpected comes up and you need money fast, your emergency fund will be there to help you out. In this blog post, we will teach you how to build an emergency fund quickly and easily. Follow these 7 simple steps and you will be on your way to financial security!

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Six Easy Ways to Save Money Without Sacrificing Your Lifestyle

Meal Prep

The economy today makes it essential to save money wherever you can. People tend to fear having to sacrifice the things they enjoy for the sake of keeping more cash in their pockets. The good news is that you can save money without sacrificing the lifestyle you enjoy. Here are some tips for saving money without giving up what you love.

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5 Habits That Can Ruin Your Budget

You've created a budget that looks great on paper. You've established different spending categories and established reasonable limits. Despite these efforts, you still run into problems on a regular basis. Sound familiar? Double-check your budget based on factors such as income and goals. When everything appears to be going well, ask yourself if any of these common financial habits are derailing your plans.

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Save Money Every Day

Reviewing Receipts

If you're looking to save money on a monthly basis, it's important to have a plan. It can be hard to find the motivation and discipline necessary to save if you don't know where your money is going or what it's being used for. That's why we've created this guide - so that you'll know exactly how much you need to spend in order to reach your savings goals at the end of each day of the month.

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Shop Smarter

Grocery Shopping

In this month's Twelve Months To Financial Fitness Challenge, we look at shopping habits that could be hurting your budget, and smarter, budget-friendly alternatives. Shopping expenses can be challenging to keep track of and keep under control because life happens, and unexpected purchases can come out of nowhere. Join us this month as we tackle keeping your shopping spending down.

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Keep More of Your Salary

Reviewing paycheck

Many of the ways in which you spend your money comes from nothing more than a habit. From spending $15 on lunch every day to dropping $150 on new shoes, your costly habits can be a slow but steady drain on your finances. If these habits are bad for your finances, think about developing good habits that will boost your finances. Here are seven simple, good money habits you can adopt to help you keep more of your paycheck.

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Post-Pandemic Budget

Budget planning on laptop

Now that the world is opening up again, your spending habits are probably changing. Gas expenses may have increased by getting out more. You may be feeling the need for a social spending spree of outings, dining, and events that you haven’t been able to indulge in. You may also be earning more again and feeling more secure financially. Rather than “winging it,” now is the time to rebuild your post-pandemic financial health with a new budget!

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Personal Finance Life Hacks

Reviewing bills with calculator

When it comes to personal finance, everyone knows you should tackle your debts, avoid unnecessary expenses, and budget wisely. But certain expenses just can't be avoided. Things like rent, utility bills, and essential weekly costs like food are bound to cost you money. However, with some smart planning, you'll be surprised at how much you can save. Here are five personal finance life hacks to reduce your living costs.

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Building a Better Budget

Couple reviewing budget

Most people know they need a budget. Maybe you have one, but you haven’t thought about it in a while, or you’re not sure if you are staying within your budget. This month we are taking away all the guesswork and walking you through your brand new budget.

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Analyzing Your Spending

Couple reviewing monthly spending

Welcome to our newest series: Twelve Months To Financial Fitness. Over the next 12 months, we will provide you with personal challenges to help you on your way to a financially fit new year. For January, we take a look at analyzing your spending. Spending analysis is much more than setting a budget. It’s taking an honest look at where your money is really going, figuring out where it should be going, and then getting it there.

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Lowering Your Household Food Costs

picking out produce

These days, most households are looking for ways to cut down on grocery and dining costs. In this article, we take a look at practical ways your family can cut down on food costs, whether you cook at home or tend to order/eat out. By cutting down on food costs, you can free up more funds for savings, everyday expenses, or discretionary spending.

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Swapping Your Expenditures During The Pandemic

Couple reviewing bills

Now more than ever, it’s important to think about the way we spend or save every dollar we make. In some cases, the quarantine orders have given us an opportunity to shift how we are spending money while staying at home. Below are our favorite tips on swapping what you spend your money on during the pandemic.

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Your 30-Day Financial Cleanse

Bad financial habits tend to creep up on us until they compound into big problems. It’s only when we can’t keep up on our debt payments or during an embarrassing situation, that we take notice and decide to do something about it. A financial cleanse is a great way to make lasting changes.

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Bulking Up: Pro Tips for Buying in Bulk

Shopping cart in store

Buying in bulk can have great financial benefits, but if not done right, you can find yourself wasting money instead of saving it. To be a successful bulk shopper, all it takes is a little planning. Here are our do’s and don’ts for bulk shopping:

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6 Ways to Avoid Overdraft Charges

When you don’t have enough money in your account to cover a bill or other charge and the account goes into the negative, the transaction is left unpaid and you’ll be given a Non-Sufficient Funds (NSF) fee. These fees can add up quickly if you’re not checking your account or receiving account notifications. Plus, it can leave your bills unpaid. Here are six ways to avoid overdrawing on your account.

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Make Wise Savings Decisions

Putting money away for a rainy day (or a sunny one, for that matter), will give you added security in case of emergency, and will help you avoid financial pit-falls like high credit card debt. Understanding the different savings options available arms you with the knowledge you need to make the most of the money you save.

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Automate Your Savings

Automatically putting money away into your savings account is the easiest way to ensure you’re growing your savings. For Rivermark members, automating these transfers to your savings is very easy! Follow these simple steps:

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Start a Budget

For a lot of folks, the first step to setting a budget is often the hardest, because you have to stare your ‘bad’ habits right in the face (for example, your daily double-mocha-whipped-yumminess). But once you get a handle on where your money is going, you can set realistic goals for spending (and saving). So, take a deep breath and dive right in.

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Build Your Emergency Fund

"Emergency savings" is money set aside to cover unexpected personal expenses. It's suggested that you have six months of essential living expenses saved in case of an emergency, however 28%* of Americans have no emergency savings at all.

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