Sense & Centsibility Blog
Young student holding smart phone in one hand and notebooks in the other.  In top left corner is the logo for America Saves Week.  The words Saving for the Unexpected are in the middle.  In the lower right corner are the words, April 8-12, 2024 --

How veterans can save $500-$1,000 for emergencies

America Saves Week 2024, April 8-12, is an annual call to action for everyday Americans to commit to saving successfully.

LSS Financial Counseling is among the participating organizations that are encouraging everyone nationwide to set a goal for savings and make a plan to maintain or improve financial wellness.

This blog was written by America Saves for the America Saves Week initiative coordinated by the Consumer Federation of America (CFA).

We understand that saving money can be a significant challenge for many veterans who are dealing with financial instability. It can be especially difficult to set aside funds for emergency savings when you are struggling to make ends meet. However, maintaining an emergency savings account can be a crucial difference between those who can weather unexpected financial challenges and those who sink into debt. Even setting aside a small amount of money, such as $500-$1,000, can provide a measure of financial security and help you manage unexpected expenses such as:

  • Paying for home repairs.
  • Additional groceries.
  • Covering medical bills.
  • Traveling for family emergencies.

Here are five ways veterans can save $500-$1,000 for emergencies

  1. Save automatically: Set up a direct deposit from your paycheck into a savings or share account. You can also set up regular transfers from your checking to your savings account.
  2. Save a portion of backpay you might receive from the Veterans Administration or from an income tax refund: Use tax form 8888 to split your tax refund into a savings account.
  3. Cut back on ordering out: Cooking meals at home can help save money. By reducing your takeout or restaurant meals to once or twice a week, you can easily create a $500 emergency fund and still have money left over.
  4. Make monthly credit card payments on time: By paying your credit card on time, you can save the $30-35 charged as a late fee each month. This helps you save most of the money you need for a $500 emergency fund. Paying your card on time also boosts your credit score, which saves you money by lowering your insurance costs and interest rates on loans and mortgages.
  5. Cut "vampire costs": Get rid of unnecessary auto-renewals, subscriptions and memberships. This helps cut expenses and frees up money that can be put towards your emergency fund.

Where to keep emergency savings

It's best to keep your emergency savings in a savings or share account. These accounts allow you to access your money when you need it. Keeping your money in a savings account also reduces the temptation to use these savings for everyday expenses. By following these tips, veterans can build a financial safety net and be better prepared for unexpected expenses.

LSS Financial Counseling is an NFCC-accredited organization. Our certified financial counselors provide nonjudgmental support to assist people in achieving or improving their financial wellness. Schedule a free financial counseling appointment by calling 888.577.2227 or emailing us. You can also start an online appointment by creating a financial profile.