Kiplinger Today

Kip Tips

Better Places to Keep Your Money Than a Mattress

Recently a bank employee told me that one of his institution's clients got spooked by the financial crisis and decided to withdraw all the cash from his account. The man came in with a duffle bag, took out $100,000 and said he was going to buy land. "No way," I said. "Didn't he know his money was insured?" But that story pales in comparison with what I read on The Consumerist June 11.

A woman in Israel had stuffed her life's savings in a mattress, Her daughter had bought her a new mattress and tossed the old mattress, which she didn't know had nearly $1 million in it. The moral of the story is pretty clear: Your money is better off in a bank.

  • As long as your bank is insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., your money is guaranteed -- up to $250,000 per depositor. See Stress Test for Your Bank.
  • You can earn interest on your savings. Online banks usually offer the best rates. See Savings With a Kick.
  • You have easy access to your cash. Not so if you dump all your cash into, say, the purchase of a plot of land. Try selling that fast in this market.

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