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3 Things You Should Do with Money Sitting in the Bank

Many people have a fear of spending too much money- or running out of money- so they don’t touch it and instead let it sit in a bank account, doing NOTHING except accumulating dust.

Eventually it gets to the point where they have a good chunk of change saved up- whether it’s tens of thousands of dollars or even hundreds of thousands of dollars- and now feel like they should be doing SOMETHING with it but don’t know what.

Assuming you have a reasonable emergency cushion earmarked, what you do with your other “lazy” money depends a lot on your situation and goals, but I usually recommend three things-

If you have a chunk of money you’d like to do something with in more than 1 year but less than 3 years and want to make sure you can access the principal in an emergency, why not open a high-yield CD? These accounts earn a higher interest rate but allow limited access to the account- so if it’s money that your family wouldn’t need right away, it’s a great way to give a good amount of money to them that will grow more than in a High Yield Savings or your checking account.

If you have no plans for the money and it’s likely you won’t need it in the short term, Invest it. When investing for a specific purpose, using an account designed for that specific purpose (retirement account for retirement investing, 529 for college investing, etc) can usually accelerate your growth even further. If you’re not sure how you want to use it, a regular old brokerage account still gives you tax benefits when used properly and will do the trick. Why not use your money that you’ve worked hard for to make more money? Whether you go the stocks or real estate route, making an investment can pay off (literally) in the long run.

My last recommendation for a chunk of money? Cross something off your bucket list. This one is different from the others but equally as important. Is there a big vacation you’re dying to take? Season sports tickets you want to buy? Or even get that dream car you’ve always admired? Money makes all of those goals and dreams happen. What’s the point of working hard to make money if you’re not going to enjoy the benefits of it anyway?

You can take one of these approaches or even all three. Me and Bobby have two investment accounts for Dean- we don’t have savings since there’s nothing we anticipate needing for him in the short term that we can’t fund out of cash flow. But we do have savings for family spending and emergency fund, we both invest our money in retirement and non-retirement account, and we’re proactive about using our money to do the things we enjoy in life (like how I mentioned buying first class tickets to the Maldives for Bobby’s 40th birthday trip a few days ago).

Just remember that whatever you do with your money, it should be bringing you closer to achieving the goals you set.