Do you want to save more? Read our tips to get your year off to a great start.
Do you want to make saving a priority, rather than an afterthought? If the answer is yes, then these tips can help you get into the savings habit, leaving you in better financial shape for the year ahead- and beyond.
1.Work out a budget
Put together a budget so you know how much you can afford to save each month. The 50-30-20 rule , can help you give your budget focus. Simply put, fifty percent of your income should go towards living essentials, like housing and bills. Twenty percent should then go towards financial goals, like savings, or debt-reduction. Finally, thirty percent of your income can be used for personal spending like entertainment or shopping for fun.
2. Start now
Whether it’s opening a savings account, putting your loose change into your money box at the end of the day, or ditching your daily takeaway coffee- do something proactive today to kick-start your savings habit.
3. Start small
There are lots of challenges out there that show how saving small amounts can soon add up. We love this 1p savings challenge from Skint Dad, who managed to squirrel away nearly £700 in a year. That could be your Christmas paid for!
4.Write down specific goals
What are you saving for? How much will it cost? And when do you need the money by?
Using these questions to set clear savings goals is a great habit to get into. Goals give you a reason to save, help you stay motivated and focus your mind on what you need to do to get there. All of this makes it more likely you’ll end up with the pot of money you’re after.
5. Set up an account for each goal
If your savings are in a separate account than the one you use for day-to-day cash, then give yourself a pat on the back. Separating your savings makes it much easier to track how much you’ve put aside - and how far you’ve got to go to reach your target.
Knowing which pot is for spending and which should be left alone also means there’s less temptation to withdraw what you should be saving.
If you’re saving for more than one thing, you can make your finances clearer still with multiple accounts, e.g. open a Christmas Saver and use your other savings account for your holiday.
6. Pay yourself first
Why not set up an automatic transfer, so a fixed sum of money will be redirected into your savings as soon as you’ve been paid?
If you work for one of our Employer Partners, you can opt-in to payroll deduction, and start saving direct from your salary. Otherwise, you can set up a standing order to transfer money to your savings account on payday or the day after.
7. Stash any savings straight away
Saved money on your car insurance, or scored money off a new pair of trainers? Transfer the amount you’ve saved straight into your savings account.
8. Build an emergency fund
A good savings goal to consider is setting up an emergency fund, to help you prepare for unexpected expenses or setbacks. The Money Advice Service suggest having three months’ essential outgoings available in an instant access savings account.
9. Save your spare change
Pop your loose change into your money box, and when it’s full pay it into the bank. You’ll be surprised at how much was in that little piggybank!
10. Regularly review your expenses
Get rid of those forgotten direct debits, subscriptions or memberships, and transfer the money into your savings account instead. Tools like The Money Saving Expert's Demotivator can tell you how much those non-essentials are costing you.
Want to save more this year? Create different pots for your savings goals from our range of accounts - including a Cash ISA. And if you work for one of our Employer Partners, don’t forget to sign up for payroll deduction and start saving the easy way.
Visit our savings page for details of what we offer.