New Year savings resolutions
OK, so New Year’s resolutions are so last month, but...have you kept any of yours? New Year resolutions have become synonymous with things you want to do and know you should commit to doing, but will only actually achieve for the first few weeks of the year (at most). But whilst it’s always a good idea to resolve to sort out your finances, January is arguably one of the best times to actually do this, as most of us will have spent at least a little more over the festive period than we would normally. Even small changes or one-off decisions can have a big impact overall, so here are three ideas you might consider to get your money mindset off on the right track at the start of 2017:
The 52 week challenge – You might have seen this on social media or elsewhere on the internet: the idea is that in the first week of the year you save £1, in the second you save £2 and so on, until you end up putting away £52 in the final week of the year. Whilst it’s a good idea in theory – doing it for a full year will mean putting away £1,378 – in practice it’s a little imbalanced, as you’ll end up needing to put away £202 in December.
One alternative is to start at £52 in the first week and count down to £1. Another is the ‘365 day challenge’, which involves putting away just a penny on the first day of the year, 2p on the second day, up to £3.65 on the final day. You won’t put away as much as with the 52 week challenge, but you’ll still end up with a healthy £667.95 saved by the end of the year.
Get rid of your satellite service, or even your TV licence – With the rise of ‘over the top’ providers such as Netflix and Amazon Prime, as well as catch-up services like All4, ITV Player and Demand 5 offering both old and new content, ditching your expensive satellite TV service is perhaps now more attractive than ever. You could also look at your TV licence, which would save you £145.50 a year. It’s worth remembering that it’s illegal to watch any BBC content without a licence, however, which now includes programmes on BBC iPlayer.
Switch your bank account and cash in – Not only is it now much quicker and easier to move your account from one bank to another, but many now offer cash rewards for switching to them. The rewards range from around £100 all the way up to £200 in total, giving you an easy way to add to your savings without having to do very much.
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David Finan, Managing Director