Do ups and downs in income make it hard for you to save?

Last month, our research showed that 70% of SaverLife Savers experience ups and downs in income. These fluctuations can make it harder to budget and save. After all, how can you plan for your financial goals when you don’t know how your income will change every month?

We were shocked to learn how frequent and how intense these monthly income changes are for our Savers. The typical Saver experiences income volatility 3 out of every 4 months. On average, this works out to a whopping 9 months of the year when your income is at least 25% higher or lower than your average income.

Income swings are significant and frequent

Contrary to what many people think, income volatility can also involve spikes in income. In fact, over half of volatility events are increases in income. The median monthly dip is $1,208 and the median monthly spike is $1,346.

Even in months when Savers have more income to work with, they tell us that it may still be difficult to save. They’re still juggling income and expenses, and they sometimes have to catch up on bills and other expenses that they’ve put off during months of lower income.

Joey, a Saver from California, told us, “The income ups and downs have a huge impact. I have to watch everything I buy and be extremely frugal. Medical expenses are pretty big; because of the ACA I’m able to see basic doctors, but I have to pay for specialists out of pocket.”

Recommended Articles

How much should I save if I’m in debt?

How much should I save monthly if I am in debt? Or what percentage of my income should I save if I am in debt? Submitted by LaTisha V. When we have debt, our priorities can change completely. To start, we have to remember that not paying our debt will negatively impact our credit history… Read more

Meet Your Fellow Savers

  At the beginning of your journey with SaverLife, we asked you about your goals. Here’s what you and your fellow savers said! EARN Savers have big goals! YES, we do! (I’m saving too!) I’m not at all surprised that housing is at the top of our “goals” list. That makes perfect sense! Buying a… Read more

How do you deal with ups and downs in income?

It’s in the news all the time: a record number of Americans have incomes that go up and down throughout the year. Some of these people work in the “gig economy,” driving for rideshare services like Lyft and Uber; some work seasonal construction jobs; and some perform childcare or freelance work when they can get it.… Read more