Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Grad school and Smarty Pig


Well everyone, let me start off with some good news. Yesterday, I received my acceptance letter to graduate school. I'll be going back to receive my teaching credential and Masters degree in the fall! Not only that but I also found out that I'll be receiving a $7,000 fellowship which will cover everything but $2,000 of tuition. Score! I was seriously stressing out about how I was going to pay for school and that will help a lot. I didn't want to end up with even more school loans as I'm still paying off the ones from my undergraduate studies. Thankfully as a teacher there is lots of aid available, especially if you commit to teaching in an under-served area. Maybe I'll get out of this thing without having to take out any loans! That'd be nice!

Moving on...I wondered if anyone had heard of or tried the online savings account SmartyPig. I was checking it out because they offer a 4.30% APY which is one of the highest I've seen around. It seems to work a little differently than traditional online banks though. They call themselves SmartyPig because they imagine themselves to be like an online piggy bank. After reading their website this is how I gather it works:

1. Set a savings goal. Decide how much you want to save and a date by which you want to have it saved and SmartyPig will tell you how much to save.
2. SmartyPig will make the automatic deposits until your goal is reached. You also have the option to make your account public so that anyone can make deposits into your account. (Hello Magic Money Fairy? Would you like to make a deposit? hehe)
3. After your savings goal is reached, SmartyPig gives you two options:
a) Receive a Mastercard with your savings amount on it
b) Receive a gift card from selected retailers with an added bonus (up to 5%)

So what do you guys think? Is this a good way to save? Would you be willing to try it?

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