Setting up a secret squirrel fund is easy.
Squirrel funds are a hot topic among many women when discussing finances and relationships.
Many women don't feel safe in a relationship unless they know they have the financial capacity to escape if they had to.
A squirrel fund is money kept in a separate account “squirrelled away” for just in case – just in case the marriage/relationship breaks down.
On one hand some feel that having a squirrel fund is like entering a relationship with one foot out the door. Others feel it is like a prenup or insurance.
No one knows what will happen in the future and many have been saved financially, both still in their relationships and those leaving, thanks to having a squirrel fund.
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It is up to you how you set it up. In a healthy, balanced relationship it is perfectly OK to have your own personal accounts with disposable funds you can spend on yourself however you like. Everyone should have play money and what you do with it is up to you. If you choose to open a high interest savings account and save some of that money, it’s your choice.
Having a squirrel fund isn’t necessarily planning for the relationship to end, but rather planning for the “what if’s” of life. Squirrel funds have been pulled out when husbands or partners have lost their jobs or when one partner passes away or gets really sick. It is not just for a relationship ending.
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If you feel uncomfortable having an account that your partner doesn’t know about, it doesn’t have to be hidden. You could simply say you are saving some of your splash cash or sanity money. If you are in a trusting relationship it won’t be a problem.
To set up a squirrel fund:
1. Select a high interest saving account, preferably with a bank separate to your main one. Pick one with a high interest rate that pays you to save like the ME Bank Saver at 5.1% p.a. with easy access to your funds online and attached to an every day account with no fees, so you can transfer the money and access it quickly from any ATM.
2. Arrange for bank statements to be sent digitally to a private email account or keep them at the bank and collect instead of having them posted out to you, they can arrange this for you. Or have them sent to an alternative address like your work or parents address.
3. Set up a way to get money in there. You could set up a direct debit and name it something obscure, or if your bank has a branch you could simply plan to deposit $10 a week or whatever you choose after you finish shopping.
4. Keep it up. It is easy to set up and start a savings plan but also very easy to stop, especially with a squirrel fund as there is no specific goal in mind generally, but just wanting to save in general. Even $10 a week is better than nothing at all and will eventually build up over time.
Just imagine, even if you never need to leave your relationship, how much you could save over 10, 20 or 30 years. What an amazing holiday or something you and your partner could have with that money.
Source: Kylie Ofiu is the author of 365 Ways To Make Money, a finance blogger, freelance writer and public speaker. She shares real ways to make and save money on her blog KylieOfiu.com
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