January 31, 2022 • 5 mins
One of the easiest ways to increase your savings is by setting up automatic savings. Whether you’re building your emergency fund or saving up for something special, automating your savings is one of the best ways to reach your goal. Patelco Online™, our online banking platform, has the tools you need for automatic saving – so read on to learn how to set it up, as well as other methods of automatic savings.
As the classic advice goes, “pay yourself first.” There are several ways to do this, the most popular being splitting your paycheck automatically. Most employers today offer direct deposit, and most will split your paycheck by a percentage or a certain amount (such as 20% or $200).
Have your employer send a certain percentage or amount into your Patelco savings account, and the rest of it into your Patelco checking account. This gives you more access to your spending money in your checking account while preserving a portion of each paycheck in your savings.
Don’t have direct deposit set up yet? It’s easy to start the process. Download our direct deposit form in Patelco Online™. From the main menu, select Accounts and then Set Up Direct Deposit. Choose your account from the dropdown menu, then select Download PDF. (The form generated will have all the info you need to give your employer or benefit provider.)
If your employer doesn’t support splitting your paycheck, Patelco will do it for you! Check out these instructions for setting up Automatic Payroll Disbursement – choose your amounts and accounts, fill out the form, send it to us, and we’ll do the rest.
To save automatically into your Patelco savings account each month, start by logging in to Patelco Online™. From the main menu, select Transfer & Pay and then tap or click on Transfer or Pay. In the Accounts section, choose your Patelco account (such as your checking account) as the From Account, and your savings account as the To Account.
Select How Much you want to save each month. Under When, select the Frequency, such as Weekly or Monthly, and then the Date of the first transfer. Under Series Ends, select when you want the automatic savings to finish – it could be Never, on a specific date, or after a certain number of occurrences.
If you’re trying to save up a specific amount of money – such as $1,000 – and are transferring $100 each month, you would choose Occurrences and then enter 10 for the Number of Occurrences. Or maybe you want to save money for a certain number of months – in which case you could enter an End Date.
To automatically save money by transferring funds from an external account into a Patelco account, follow the instructions above but choose an external account (or Add an Account if you need to add an external account) under the From Account dropdown.
Once you’ve used one of the methods above for automating your savings, you may want to track your progress. We’ve got a great new tool in online banking for that called Savings Goals.
Log in to Patelco Online™, select Tools & Settings and then Savings Goals. Select the Create a savings goal button. (If you already have a goal set, select the + button to create a new goal.) Choose the savings account you want to use for your goal (such as the one you used to set up automatic Transfers into), and then the category (such as Kids, Emergency Savings, etc.). Give your goal a Title, and choose your Goal Amount.
For the amount, we’ll account for what’s already in the account. So if you want to build your emergency fund up to $1,000 total and already have $100 in your account, our Savings Goals tool will encourage you to save up the remaining $900 – so enter $1,000 as the total amount you want to have in the account. (In this example, if you wanted to save up an additional $1,000 you should select $1,100 as your goal.)
If you want, select a date by which you want to achieve the goal. Then select Create goal. To get Alerts on your progress towards this goal, select Tools & Settings and then Alerts. Select Savings Goals from the left and then turn the alert(s) on that you want.
To check your progress at any time (or to reallocate money to one goal or change any other settings), go to Tools & Settings and then select Savings Goals. We’ll display your progress as a percentage, along with other useful information about your goal.
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