Have you heard of Smartypig?
Smartypig, simply put, is an online piggy bank. The concept is to provide a way to save for short-term goals, or a specific item - like a camera, vacation, or an appliance.
So much of our country operates with the "buy now, pay later" mentality.(including me - prior to my frugal makeover)......this type of account reverses that to "pay now, buy later.......when you can pay in cash!".
This is how the Smartypig system works...
- You register and open an account. Funds are FDIC insured.
- You set your goal and timeframe. Smartypig helps you figure out how much $$ you'll need to transfer to meet your goal.
- You set up an automatic transfer of a specified amount from your checking account. Interest is accrued daily.
- When you reach your goal, Smartypig sends you a gift card from select retailers or a visa debit card for the amount of your savings. You can also just have the money electronically transferred back to your checking account.
- You go purchase your item with cash!
- Smartypig is integrated with Facebook and Twitter. Smartypig will post an update every time you add funds (if you want). Friends can cheer you on and encourage you!
- You can create a widget to post to your blog, facebook, etc. Friends can cheer you on and even contribute to your cause!
- It also makes a great savings account for kids! It was recently featured on MSN Money's Smart Spending page in a post from The Dough Roller. Smartypig was their #1 pick for kids. To quote: "SmartyPig is not just a savings account that accepts deposits and withdrawals. Instead, account holders set up savings goals, and then contribute money to their account to reach them. A savings goal must be at least $250 and can go as high as $250,000. This is a great way to teach a child the importance of setting goals. And you can even involve friends and family members, as they can contribute money toward the child’s goal."
- You can even give a Smartypig gift card to help a child open their own account!
- You can get up to a 12% cash boost on your savings by choosing select retail cards, such as Amazon.com, Macy's, etc.
I am thinking of setting one up to save for a camera. I would just love a new, good digital camera! I'm estimating I will need to spend about $500. I'm seriously thinking about opening a smartypig account to save for it. This looks like the perfect camera for me!