SCOTIA — With just one-third of Americans saying they feel prepared for their long term financial futures, according to a recent national survey http://www.americasaves.org/images/asweek2014releasefinal.pdf, 1st National Bank of Scotia is joining community banks nationwide in encouraging individuals and families to save money and build personal wealth as part of “America Saves Week” (Feb. 23-28).
The nationwide campaign, which began in 2007, features a broad coalition of non-profit, corporate and government organizations that are committed to raising awareness for the importance of creating savings funds, building emergency funds and assessing savings plans.
“It’s never too late todevelop good saving habits to achieve financial stability,” said JohnBuhrmaster, president and CEO of 1st National Bank of Scotia and current president of the Independent Community Bankers of America®, the nation’s voice for community banks of all sizes and charter types.
“By participating in America Saves Week, the nation’s more than 6,500 community banks continue to raise awareness of the importance of savings and offer consumers tips on how to reach savings goals,” he said. “We encourage customers to speak with their community bank about how they can begin a savings strategy or build on what they are already doing to save for the future.”
Buhrmaster said that although saving can be intimidating, with the help of local community banks, creating and maintaining savings funds can be one less thing to worry about.
He offered the following tips to help consumers get started on their personal savings:
- Set a goal: People are more successful when they have certain goals in mind, so create and share a savings goal with your family and friends. Start small — even saving your loose change can get you somewhere. Aim to start a path toward building an emergency fund of savings with six to nine months of living expenses.
- Make a plan: By creating a spending plan, list your expenses and compare them to your income. The plan will help prioritize what are necessities and wants for the month. Attempt to use your credit cards more efficiently, too. Doing that can help ensure that you will not take on too much debt and can minimize interest charges.
- Save automatically: Many employers offer regular payroll deduction, which is one of the best ways to start and keep saving money. Make it a routine to automatically put aside a certain amount of money each paycheck, or ask your community bank to make an automatic transfer from your checking to savings account each month.