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Putting money in a piggybank

Why should you start saving now?

I don’t know about you, but it feels like 2016 has already started running away with me. The fact it’s mid-April brings me out in a bit of a cold sweat. If you haven’t started thinking about your financial situation this year, now is a great time to start to.

It’s the new financial year, which has brought a raft of changes including an increase in the personal savings allowance, which you can read about in our financial year blog post.

We’ve been collaborating with the BBC to come up with a cash calendar to help you do something new every month to help keep your finances nice and healthy.

The theme this month is to save in a way that ‘protects yourself from yourself’. Not sure what we mean?

Here one of our BBC video stars, Nick Hill, explains how using the above philosophy can help you manage your money and start the summer months with a balanced and happy bank balance.

Our financial experts’ top saving tips

It’s easy to put off saving and spend what little you have saved. I’m guilty of this myself. As you see your bank balance go up, it’s easy to feel rich and start spending more.

This is where it’s important to protect yourself from yourself, and break this spending cycle.

I have lots of ways to trick myself into doing this. If you want to do the same, start small and then you’ll barely notice it. Work out how much you could save every month and then set up a regular payment on payday. Doing it this way means you won’t have too much of a chance to miss the money and you can always increase the amount if it’s not making too much of a strain on you.

Starting small and building it up can really help. It can be easy to feel disheartened if you overstretch yourself; but you don’t have to be putting away much for it to start to make a difference. I use this principle in other areas too. So, although I know saving into a pension is a good thing, it can be quite daunting to increase my rate, so I’ve increased it in small percentages over time to help me reach my savings goal.

Shop around for the best savings account for you. It’s easy to switch, and you might get a better deal from a different bank.

Another great tip is to use is the IF statement. So, I have in my head that if X happens, I’ll do Y. An example would be if I find something I want to buy (X), I’ll wait a month before I make a final decision (Y) to see whether I really want to buy it. Often, I find I forget what I was going to purchase anyway!

Having some funds set aside can help to pay for big purchases, or give you peace of mind in case any unexpected costs arise.

 

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