For years, I have been earning and saving my money in my bank account, putting aside emergency and future funds into my "savings" account, and money for bills and personal expenses in my "checking" account.
This has served me well, but I fear this is a road to short-term satisfaction, long-term disaster. Besides a 3% deduction from my paycheck into a retirement portfolio and a state retirement plan, I don't have any 'investment' money saved away for future purchases - and I know there are some on the horizon, like a down payment on a Car, a House Mortgage, and my future child's college education that I'd like to be able to make (in 5, 10 and 20 years respectively).
I don't know if my Savings account, with its low volatility but also low interest, is the right way to save for such major life purchases, but I want to be able to pay into my 'savings' so that it can grow as my ability to set aside money also grows, so a static savings bond doesn't sound like it would cut it either, and stock market investments seem too volatile for something so important.
How can I start setting my money aside in a savings account that will grow smarter than a simple low-interest banking account of money?