The SmartyPig Blog

Beat Holiday Bills

The most “wonderful time of the year” is also the most expensive. But it’s not impossible to finish the year free of debt, it just requires some planning. Savvy Sugar tosses 5 simple tips our way to help keep shoppers out of the red this year. First and foremost: get competitive. And with one of the most competitive interest rates around, switching your savings to SmartyPig will put your money to work for you like nowhere else. To spend money, you must have money. Simple, right?

With that important step out of the way, make time to create a shopping list and prepare to shop around. Not in the store of course, because that’s too tempting, but online. THEN when it’s time to buy, hit the shops, get the deals and win big. Lastly, as Savvy suggests and we strongly agree: Don’t. Stop. Saving. Keep your automatic deductions active, “the money will be out of sight and unavailable when you’re out shopping with your debit card, and you’ll feel better about spending money on gifts for others knowing that you’ve already taken care of yourself.”

Keep your spirit up these holidays by keeping your savings safe and your credit card bill blank with the help of SmartyPig. Here’s to no post-holiday bill hangover!

Wishing you successful saving.

Sarah Foss, SmartyPig’s Media Mad Woman

His, Mine, and Ours

There comes a time in all relationships where you must have “the talk.” It’s the finance talk, and as relationships evolve many couples opt to meld finances and take the leap to joint accounts. There’s no right or wrong way to do this, but there are many options. Stacy Rapacon from Kiplinger runs through this debate in a post highlighting several options for those considering financial co-mingling.

One joint account, separate credit cards or separate checking accounts and one shared credit card, or even the option to use “allowances” to help money manage. The options are endless, really. In my marriage we choose to share accounts, it keeps things simple and makes management easy. We do however save for personal goals separately. And we do that with SmartyPig. I have no interest in another TV. My husband does. So he keeps his goals for travel with his buddies and a new TV separate from mine. Likewise, my saving for another new road bike is of no appeal to him. We both donate about the same amount each month to our goals and then if we don’t spend all of our “fun money,” we each have the option to contribute that, as well. It works for us because we share our finances; yet reach our personal goals separately by saving more (and usually sacrificing more.)

It’s not a one-conversation concept, but when it comes down to saving, either separately or together, SmartyPig is the place to do it. Easy withdrawal options, competitive interest, and thousands of cash back opportunities make it THE place to grow your money.

Wishing you successful saving.

Sarah Foss, SmartyPig’s Media Mad Woman



How Are You Using Your SmartyPig?

I started SmartyPig with the intent of saving for a vacation. When I realized how easy it was to categorize my needs (I’m type A) I started saving for everything…insurance, gifts, home improvements. Each goal is like a check off my master to do list. Love that feeling! – Marc

I’m saving for my daughter’s first trip to the American Doll store. It’s not a huge goal, but those dolls aren’t cheap, and I hope to make all of her dreams come true when the trip finally happens! – Pam

I love SmartyPig! – Bryan

Sometimes I forget I even have SmartyPig. Then I get my monthly statement, and I’m all, wow! I have a lot of money I am forgetting about. Pretty nice! – Luke

A Penny Wasted

money-drain-300x300Convenient food items, coffee drinks and buying things I don’t “need” are all large money drains for my pocket book. We all have ‘em. And this week, Savvy Sugar lists some of the more common ways you are draining your wallet and not even realizing it.

A few of my favorites? Heating and cooling costs. Now is the perfect time of year to save a bit on those, so open the windows, folks. Not saving dinner leftovers? That’s a great lunch, a cheap meal, and a nice alternative from the regular turkey sandwich. Lastly, bank fees. An overdraft charge here, an ATM fee there. Those fees add up FAST. Don’t let your bank make money off your carelessness. Check your financial spending this week , and while your at it, I dare you find to find a money drain and nip the problem in the bud.

Wishing you successful saving (and spending!)

Sarah Foss, SmartyPig’s Media Mad Woman,

Gift Giving = UP!

CThe highest rate in 3 years; holiday sales are on the rise! “Based on a survey of 2,200 shoppers, they found those who make under $50,000 plan to spend $377 for the holidays… those who make $50,000 or more plan to spend about the same amount, around $978.” Say the experts at Yahoo News.

You may be on the high or low end of that range, and either way, you should do a little planning before gift giving this holiday season. And while it’s just 10 weeks away, there is still plenty of time. A mere $40 a week will have you saving $400 before the big guy visits. And if you’re already near your savings goal, don’t forget to cash out with SmartyPig’s Retailer Gift Card providers. Favorites like Macy’s, Toys R’ Us, and the Gap will surely make all your gift recipients happy, and you too, with up to 11% cash back.

If you’re spending more this season, spend the right way, with SmartyPig!

Sarah Foss, SmartyPig’s Media Mad Woman,

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