3 Painless Cash-Saving Tips to Build Your Emergency Fund

Who doesn't want a bigger bank account? If we all want to have extra cash, why is it so hard to do?

Having a financial cushion isn't something that is just for other people who can afford it, it is a necessity for everyone. And for nurses, who enjoy the flexibility of frequently moving in and out of the workforce, having an emergency stash is essential.

An emergency stash keeps you from going into debt when something unexpected happens. Almost any small family crisis can turn into a cash problem. If your spouse loses a job, if a parent requires care and you need frequent plane tickets to see them, or your car conks out for good, you might face big expenses, a loss of income, or both. Start putting money aside now and you will see the rewards each week.

1. Put a Little Aside with Every Paycheck.

We all know this step because financial gurus say it all the time. They say it because it works, but most of us don't do it. The key is to not worry about putting aside a big amount. If you can put aside $50 a week, that is fantastic and you will certainly reach your goals faster. But don't be discouraged if you can't. Even $5 a week adds up. Your progress may be slower, but it is still progress. Each increase in your bank account's balance is a success.

2. Get Creative!

The easiest way to save is to have a certain amount withdrawn from your paycheck each pay period. You won't notice the difference as easily as if you have to fork over the money on your own. But you can also use sneaky ways to fool yourself! Throw all your change into a jar at the end of each day and watch how quickly it adds up. After a few months you could have a sizable chunk to deposit.

3. Be Diligent.

Keep your financial goals in plain sight. Even if you have to write “pay off college loans” on a sticky note and tape it to your credit card, do it. The small pause that note gives you could prevent you from making an impulsive purchase. And remember even the small purchases like $10 here and there for lunch can easily cost you $50 a month. Make your own lunch for work and bring your own coffee when you do errands. Even if you make your coffee fancy at home with flavored syrups or creamers, you are still going to pay a lot less than you would at a store. And you will still enjoy feeling like you are having a treat.

Make conscious choices when you spend – you might find you can cut corners without feeling deprived. 

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