Retirement, that annual vacation, college tuition — those are just a few of the many reasons you sock away part of your paycheck each week.

After the monthly bills are paid — or even before — make it a habit to put some of that paycheck into your savings account so you can achieve your dreams. And we have some tips on how to get the most out of that savings account.

Use online banking to automate your savings plan

Does anyone remember that little paper passbook? Banking is much more convenient now, to say the least.

These days, you can make saving a part of your spending plan. When you get your paycheck in your account by direct deposit, or by using a mobile deposit app, simply set up an automatic deposit schedule to move some money from your checking to your savings account.

Open specialized accounts

Your bank doesn’t offer just one kind of savings account. There are some specialized accounts just for retirement, college savings and Club Accounts for special events, such as the holiday season or a family vacation.

By utilizing something like First Citizens' Federal Credit Union's Club Accounts, a weekly deposit can be automatically deposited each pay period and earn annual dividends until it is directly deposited into your checking account, in October for the holidays, for example, or in June for a summer vacation. Segmenting your savings will help you budget, plan and save more efficiently.

Another great account is a First Citizens’ Youth Savings Account for children newborn to age 14. It features a $25 incentive when they reach a $100 balance and another $25 at $1,000, all with a great interest rate.

Shop around for higher interest rates

Both your checking and savings accounts can earn you dividends and an annual percentage yield (APY). Explore the different accounts and rates your bank offers and choose the one that gives you the most bang for your buck, in terms of earning, while your cash is in the account.

Some accounts can have a higher APY, or earning ability, because you are a veteran and have a Hero Account, for example. Or, because you are a police officer, firefighter, teacher or health care professional, which qualifies you for the Champion Account at First Citizens’ Federal Credit Union.

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