Spring cleaning doesn’t just mean cleaning your home and going on a diet, it also means organising your finances so that everything is in its right place. The spring time is traditionally the end of the tax year so it’s a good time to review your financials. If you’ve tried to save before without success then read on.
MAKE IT A HABIT
When you start thinking about money it’s easy to follow the rabbit down the rabbit hole and become a little bit obsessed. You start to think about what money you have or don’t have and what you can afford to spend.
Of course this is part of any budget plan but it gets much easier if you create an automatic monthly saving – perhaps something that goes straight from your account on pay day. This way you save without noticing.
USE PAY DAY
Pay day is a great relief and chance to splurge and treat yourself. But if you’re saving it’s also the best time to send money to your savings account to gather interest. The longer you wait after pay day to save the harder it becomes.
The best way to use pay day is to set up a standing order to leave on the day or just after it. You might also benefit from a savings app that automatically saves money for you. As with any savings scheme discipline and consistency leads to success.
Interest is one of the great support mechanisms you have for growing your savings in the long term. Your bank, building society, or online account will offer you a percentage increase on your money for choosing to save with them. Make sure you get the best rate.
A further advantage to getting the best interest rate is the process of compound interest. This is when you earn interest on interest earned from previous savings. Continue the same payments regularly and you will benefit from compound interest.
SAVE WHAT YOU CAN
If you are just starting out with saving the monitor your money in and money out regularly. You might find that you can save on some routine expense like non owner car insurance. At the end of each week assess how much you can save.
If it looks like you can’t save anything, don’t worry. The numbers might be depressing to look at but there are ways you can alter your lifestyle to make room for savings. Remember you may not be able to alter the money in but you can decide on your spending.
When you’re trying to save investing your money might seem like a step too far. Don’t you need to accumulate something before risking it somewhere else? This is partly true, but remember that interest accumulation is also a form of investing.
You could invest £20 per month in a Stocksbridge shares ISA or a Unit Trust Investment Fund. This is not a lot to invest, the risk is low but the potential long term returns are reasonable.