A few days ago I wrote about my personal goals for 2017. In it I mentioned that I wanted to be sensible with my money. For a couple of years the money I’ve earned from my part-time job was just a little bit of extra money to spend on what I want. Now I need it to pay for some of the most vital parts of my life. It’s important for me to understand how much I’m earning, how much I’m spending, and try to keep myself out of my overdraft as much as possible. But along with all of this, I want to try to save some money as well. And there’s not a better time to start than the new year!
Earnest seemed to have the same idea, as they launched a money saving challenge for 2017. Like I’ve already said, I had planned to have the new year as a starting point to save money, but that was the only detail I had really thought about. I hadn’t set myself a target of how much money I wanted to save. I still don’t, actually. As long as I have a substantial amount of money saved over for uni next year when my student loan simply just isn’t enough, then I’ll be happy. — What I hadn’t given a thought to was how to save this money, which is the most important bit.
Earnest says the best way to try and save money in 2017 was to set small and achievable goals. It’s all well and good saying you’re going to put £100 or however much out of your pay check into a savings account each month, but how well is that actually going to go down? While saving money is good, you don’t want to leave yourself too short of money each month then you can’t go out and do anything fun every once in a while. With this in mind, I managed to come up with 4 money saving goals for 2017.
Buy a budget book. – This way I can record my income and my outgoings (including some money for leisure activities). Then it’s easy to see how much money I will have left over to save.
Research into better alternatives. – Sometimes with food shopping, you are literally just paying to have the brand name plastered all over the packaging. Supermarkets often offer their own brand of food, that is cheaper but as equally as tasty as the branded products. The same goes for hair and beauty products, and even clothes. The amount of times I’ve seen something in Topshop only to find a similar version in New Look but half the price is silly.
The same can go for banks too. I’m currently with a bank that the majority of my family is with, and originally chose the bank for that reason. I honestly don’t know the current interest rate on it, but I’m going to look into it. Because there might be a better deal out there with another bank. And right now I need every extra penny I can get. It’s time to research into what I’m buying and compare!
Plan for Christmas in advance. – One thing that’s hit my financially in the past month is the cost of Christmas. Anything I had left over from my pay cheque went on presents and then even some of the small savings I have! This year I aim to try and create a Christmas budget, which states how much money I can actually afford to spend on each person I’m giving gifts too. If you’re super organised, then you could also start buying these presents as early as possible and spread the cost throughout the year, so it doesn’t all hit you in one big go!
Save The Bank Holiday Pay. – Sometimes working Bank Holidays are okay, especially when you’re getting paid double your hourly rate. While it can me tempting to spend that extra pay in a “treat yourself” splurge, it’s time to be responsible and save it. You do without the extra money every other day, so it should be easy!
The people at Earnest, being the helpful financial organization that they are also share some other helpful tips to save money on their site! They even compiled it into one big guide for me to follow. Each month has it’s own way to save money. For example, in January you split your tax return into thirds, with one-third going into your savings. Whereas in May you take a 30-day break from your favourite lunch spot and bring a packed lunch to save money. You can find my guide down below to view and maybe even take it on yourself!
Got any money saving goals for 2017? Let me know in the comments below. And if you need any financial tips then make sure you head over to Earnest’s site. They cover everything and have great refinancing student loan options if your one of the many struggling with student loan debt!
*Earnest contacted me to write this post, however there has been no compensation of any form for the content and links. All views are also still my own. For more information please see my disclaimer page.