Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Getting Your Finances Fit For Summer

Summer is just around the corner, and a lot of people are talking about trying to get in shape for all the summer fun that lies ahead. Your body isn't the only thing you should be whipping into shape, however - as summer approaches, you should also dedicate some time to your financial situation. Summer activities and vacations can put a major dent in your budget if you're not careful. First Bank of the Lake is here to help with these proactive tips to get your finances in shape for summer.

Shrink Energy Costs
You may notice that your electric bill continues to rise as the temperature does. Planting shade trees can be a great way to cut down on your cooling costs, but you may not see the benefit of your new trees for several years. Here are a few things you can do for a more immediate result:
  • Use natural sunlight instead of indoor lighting.
  • Water outdoor plants from a watering can (instead of letting the hose run nonstop).
  • Use curtains and blinds to prevent too much light from coming inside and warming up the house.
  • Dry clothes outside to spend less energy on your dryer.

Build A Budget For Your Summer Activities
After being cooped up inside all winter, you are probably long overdue for some fun in the sun. Before you get swept away by all of the enticing activities available to you, sit down and plan a budget for your summer fun. How much can you afford to spend every month? By allocating a specific section of your budget to your summer activities, you don't have to feel guilty about spending a little bit of cash on them. You can also help prevent your spending from getting out of control as the summer progresses.

Evaluate Your Current Budget
Since you're looking at your budget anyway, this is the perfect opportunity to carefully evaluate your current budget. Many people find that there are recurring monthly costs that they aren't fully using anymore, such as subscriptions and memberships. It's unnecessary to pay for things you aren't using, so identifying these elements can be an easy way to cut costs if your lifestyle and/or interests have changed since you first signed up.

Look For Cost-Friendly Alternatives
Zoos, amusement parks, and other summer attractions often offer special discounts and pricing at certain times throughout the year. Watch for these special offers, and plan your trips accordingly. You can also look for activities that won't cost you anything, such as day trips to the local state parks, beaches, playgrounds, picnic areas, and hiking/biking trails. While it's certainly possible to spend large amounts of money on your summer activities, you definitely don't have to.

Set Up An Automatic Savings Plan
If your payroll is set up to directly deposit into your bank account, it can be hard to distinguish how much should be set aside and how much can be used for "fun money." What many people do not realize is that employees often have a choice as to how their money is deposited in their bank accounts. For example, you could request that a certain dollar amount or percentage be deposited into your savings account at the Lake of the Ozarks and that the remaining paycheck be deposited in your checking account. This can make it easier to save money, since you won't be as tempted to spend the entire check.

Contact First Bank Of The Lake For Your Financial Needs!
Getting your finances in shape for summer doesn't have to be challenging - all it takes is a little dedicated effort. Our local bank in Osage Beach MO is here to help you in any way we can. We offer Lake of the Ozarks checking accounts to adults all around the area, as well as savings accounts to help you save money. If you are interested in investing your funds, we also offer CDs and IRA accounts at the Lake of the Ozarks. Visit our website to learn more about how we may be able to help you!

First Bank of the Lake - Striving For Excellence
Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender.

Located at the entrance to the Osage Beach Premium Outlets!

4558 Osage Beach Parkway
Suite 100
Osage Beach, MO 65065

(573) 348-2265

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