Saving money for multiple savings goals at the same time can be complicated. I mean how many times have you tried to save for repairs, a new car, your emergency fund, and pet expenses and just been overwhelmed.
It IS possible to save for multiple goals at the same time. But something you need to remember is that all savings goals aren’t equal.
You don’t need to save the same amount for each goal every single month. First I want you to list out your goals and make sure they are specific. Not just I want to save money but what are you saving for? How much do you need? Do you need it within a certain timeframe? Do you have an emergency fund? You don’t know what you are saving for if you don’t take the time to think about what you need to save for now and even the future.
If you don’t have an emergency fund that is definitely your first goal. This can be your initial emergency fund aka the amount you’re okay with for now so you can focus on other goals like sinking funds or paying off debt. Maybe you start with a goal of 1 month of expenses but then you come back to it later.
Okay I am getting ahead of myself. Let’s continue.
Now that you have your list of savings goals you need to focus on the timeframes. Maybe you have three birthdays next month and you want to make sure you can buy a $25 gift for each. Or maybe you know you will need new tires in the next 6 months. Or maybe you have your dog’s annual vet visit in 2 months. That is why it is so important to understand the time frame before prioritizing goals.
Do you have several savings goals and you aren’t sure how to save for them? Should you save for one at a time or save for them all? Will putting small amounts in each really help you save? There are a few things you need to ask yourself before you start saving because not all savings goals are equal.
Let’s go through a few scenarios together. Let’s pretend it is January and you have $500/month to allocate to savings:
You have to save $500 by the end of February for new brakes and you want to build your emergency fund because you only have $100.
Repair Fund: $250
You have 2 months to save for the brakes so you can split it within 2 budgets and then put the rest to the EF. Simple. You could also put more to the brakes and less to the EF. The choice is yours.
You need to save for upcoming birthdays which is around $500 over the next 6 months. You also need to replenish your pet fund since you spent it all. Finally you have a trip next summer to Mexico you will need around $3,000.
Birthday Fund: $100
Pet Fund: $200
Travel Fund: $200
Pet Fund: $100
Travel Fund: $400
Birthday Fund: $250
Pet Fund: $100
Travel Fund: $150
You can do many different combinations depending on what you want to prioritize in January. You have 6 months to save $500 so you technically don’t even need to include your birthday fund yet (option 2). Or you can save half so you can just get it done with faster (option 3). You didn’t give a specific amount for pet fund so I am not sure what you need but I put a little into each option.
As you can see, it is possible to save for multiple goals at the same time you just need to map out different scenarios (which is something we cover in Flourish FinanciALLI).
Hopefully you feel better about how to manage multiple savings goals at the same time. Of course when you add in other random expenses, debt payments, investing goals, and other spending it can get a little more complicated.
If you need help actually creating your plan so you can pay off debt, save for multiple goals, and spend at the same time…join me in my program Flourish FinanciALLI.