Tony Vine-Lott, Director General of TISA, wrote in the FTAdviser yesterday that only a third of British families habitually save a portion of what they earn. Shockingly, just as many families are broke every month end that there is nothing left to put in savings.
How can 66% of the British population start building up savings?
The answer is to put away a tenth of what you make and forget about it. And do it automatically.
Arrange for your bank or building society to automatically take out 10% from your pay every payday and put it into a saver account. This way you don’t even see the money come in and aren’t tempted to spend it on things you don’t really need. You can set this up yourself with most of the best current account deals by setting up a direct debit or standing order using their online banking tools.
If you worry about how to stretch what is leftover to last til the next pay, know that there are easy ways to cut down on spending at home and even make a few extra quid:
Make a grocery list and stick to it
British consumers typically horde food from supermarkets only to throw it out after it has sat in the fridge too long. To avoid this, make sure you only buy what you will actually eat by planning your meals and making a list. If it’s not in the list, it shouldn’t go in the trolley.
Before heading out to shop, compare supermarket prices at http://www.mysupermarket.co.uk/. This will not only lead you to the store with the best prices, you will also have a fairly certain idea how much you will spend to budget accordingly.
Don’t pay for bills you don’t have to
Do you pay a monthly membership to the gym you never go to? Do you pay for a mobile phone service that can be switched to pay-as-you-go? Do you really watch enough TV to need a TV licence? If you cancel a subscription you don’t really use and save around ₤20 a month, you could save up to ₤240 in a year.
Sell off what you don’t use
Go through your cupboard and sort all the things you haven’t used in the past few years. Chances are you never will and you can add a bit more to your savings by selling these things off. Sites like Ebay make it easy to find people who will be happy to take over your unwanted treasure.
This is a guest post from Clydesdale Bank with an image from OTA photos.