Is It Possible to Over-Save?

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It’s good to save, but you still need to have some money to use.

One of the most common lessons impressed upon the newest to the world of personal finance is the important of saving money. This is absolutely true; you should save money for an emergency, for retirement, or maybe just for a new microwave. The thing is, though, odd as this may sound, it is possible to over-save. Sounds crazy, right? You can never have too much money in reserve. That’s true, but that only really applies if you have a surplus of money to set aside.


While living paycheck to paycheck is admittedly not an ideal way to handle your finances, a lot of us don’t have a choice in the matter. If you can live within your means and make enough money to keep the lights on, with a little leftover for this and that, that’s great, but if you have very strenuous financial requirements, it might not be possible to set money aside. I bring this up because, if you were to attempt to save a massive amount of money, you’re likely not going to able to afford your daily bread. Saving is important, but it’s not more important than covering all of your regular recurring costs.

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Even if you have a very high-paying position and can squirrel away all the money you want without impacting your life, that still may not be the best option. A good emergency savings account usually has enough money to keep you going for three to six months while you look for new work. If you’ve got enough money to cover that, then saving any more is kind of superfluous. If you have the disposable income, you should instead consider investing it. If you aren’t doing anything with that money anyway, you may as well put it to work for you. Or, if you’re already obscenely wealthy, you could always donate some money to charity. Hey, it’s tax-deductible.

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2 months ago