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How do you create savings pot when not much left over each month?

(28 Posts)
Jemster Wed 16-Mar-16 18:00:13

I was brought up my parents to know the importance of having savings but sadly I haven't followed their example.

We have 2 young dc's, I work p/t, dh full time with average salaries. DH has a lot of debt from before I knew him which we have to pay a set amount each month, luckily we have an arrangement and all interest is frozen but it's still going to take years to get rid of.
Add to that the bills & general living costs we don't have lots left to save for a 'rainy day'.
There are things that need doing in our house & my car is starting to have more things go wrong as it's 12 years old. I'd like to be able to save for these things but can't see how it will be possible.

How do other families manage this?
I hear people talking about ISA's, savings & investments & feel really bad that we have nothing put by. Grateful for any advice.

MrsPresley Wed 16-Mar-16 18:07:44

Put savings away on pay day, it easier than waiting till then end of the month/week.

Meal plan, and stick to it.

Save £2 coins and change, I out all my change in a tin every night up to the 50ps, it's amazing how much gets saved!

Check your bank every day, anything up to the £10 I put in a savings account after all I can only withdraw cash in £10 amounts, so if I had £36.80 I would put the £6.80 away.

Even if your only saving small amounts at a time, it's good to see it grow!

RabbitSaysWoof Wed 16-Mar-16 20:30:02

I agree with little and often to put money away and then let yourself forget it exists. For me I budget through the month in envelopes, so for eg have shopping money aside and petrol money aside, seeing whats left in cash encourages me to really decide if I want to spend it or if we can go without something.
It encourages me to use the car less for days off. It's harder in a family tho there are more needs to cover I am a lp and my child is too young to ask for much.
Could you do without a car? older cars cost so much.
Other than that ways of earning extra, ebaying, mystery shopping. Money saving expert has great ideas.
It sounds miserable but I managed to build up a little saving in my gas and elec account by frugaling extra around the house when the tax credit cuts were looking likely last year by keeping heating low, shallower baths, bathing ds less often instead of routinely every night, not having the tv on for background noise when we wern't even watching, charging things when I am around to switch them off when they are done, batch cooking to oven loads at a time instead of putting the oven on every night for one thing at a time. The threads on here are brilliant for saving ideas I pinch loads.

specialsubject Thu 17-Mar-16 13:57:26

you can earn small sums by clever use of current accounts. For instance, the TSB Classic plus pays 5% interest on your credit balance, and 5% cashback on contactless transactions. Maxed out this is only a tenner a month but it all helps.

switch a bank account for an incentive; shift and the Halifax will give you £125. Some others also do this.

look at hammering down utility costs by regular switching - loyalty is for fools. That means gas, electric and insurance.

older cars are not necessarily money pits. See if you can find a reliable £500 job, they exist.

people can and have paid off big debts. Has your husband cured what he was doing wrong to incur it?

8FencingWire Fri 18-Mar-16 01:21:46

Grab a notebook and write EVERYTHING down.
What money comes in and when.
What money comes out and when.
Do an honest household budget.
If it helps, write it down here.
Have a look at what you are overspending on.
Menu plan and budget accordingly.

The trick is to pay yoursef (the savings) first. I have opened a regular saver with First Direct. £300 a month for 12 months at 6% interest.
£300 for me, was, initially, an enormous amount. Money I thought I can't afford to save. It worked I told myself: it's only for 1 year and only to pay for the car balance. It's coming to maturity next month. I haven't missed the £300, a funny thing happens: you cut your cloth accordingly. And you get on with it.
Good luck.

midnightmoomoo Fri 18-Mar-16 15:51:59

I agree with 8 - pay yourself first. I'm a TA so I don't earn much so when I get paid I transfer my chunk to the joint account then put £25 into an account linked to my normal one. I decided that I need some savings in my name, and this is all I can afford for now. But if I didn't do it straightaway, it would get spent and I'd think I couldn't afford to save that month. Paying yourself first means you cut the cloth of what's left accordingly as a pp said above.

KinkyDorito Sat 19-Mar-16 16:09:08

I took it all out first this month and have amazed myself by actually sticking to budgets for a change. I was leaving the money in the account, budgeting, but then, because I knew it was there, overspending. Groceries are a biggy for us - I'm a pest at not sticking to my shopping budget.

APotterWithAHappyAtmosphere Sat 19-Mar-16 16:12:48

I started small and increased as time went on - £20 a week went into my ISA on payday, then £30, £50 and then my hours increased so I put all the extra into savings, meaning I now save £100 per week.

Floralnomad Sat 19-Mar-16 16:17:30

The natwest have a rewards account that costs £3 per month but you get 3% back on your direct debits for council tax and utilities .

figureofspeech Mon 21-Mar-16 02:07:59

Open a 30 day plus notice account or buy premium bonds with your savings money so you can't easily access it. My mistake was to open an instant access savings account to save all of my spare cash into. I've now put 75% into a notice account for long term savings and 25% into an instant saver for emergencies.

figureofspeech Mon 21-Mar-16 02:10:21

Also sign up to top cash and pay for everything through that to receive cash back. You often get very good I incentives to switch utilities etc through cash back sites.

figureofspeech Mon 21-Mar-16 02:16:02

Want2bSupermum Mon 21-Mar-16 02:36:46

So we pay ourselves first. For budgeting I like to use cash in jars. Basically the budget is split out between jars on a weekly basis. This is for discretionary spending only. Utilities and rent or mortgage is all done via direct debit.

The game becomes to get to the end of the week before you get to the end of the jars. This has been the most effective way for us to cut back spending. You have to write down every penny that is spent too. It really makes you think twice about spending.

I would also look into if you can increase your income. You say you work PT. Would it make sense financially for you to increase your hours or go FT? Are you able to get a 2nd income from your skills?

minnymoobear Mon 21-Mar-16 02:42:55

Ive started paying myself first too- set amount goes out on payday- the salary increase I had in January as I figured I'd never had it before and wouldn't notice not having it, so it's in a online Isa.
Budgeting is hard and I need to set some time aside to do it properly- too many little bits of money going out on unnecessary stuff

Want2bSupermum Mon 21-Mar-16 13:23:57

Budgeting is impossible. Give yourself £x over a defined period (we find a week works best for us) and all of a sudden it's so much easier for us. Also, what works for us is that you can move money between the jars.

Daffodil90 Mon 28-Mar-16 17:12:49

We just changed life insurance policies. Went from £45 per month to pass then £15 and a better product for our needs. Plus the original product wasn't what I thought it was (I think the seller saw us first time house buyers coming a mile away!) And got £163 back because they should have sold us something cheaper.

I'm terms of saving I treat it like a bill. £10 a month by standing order into DDs junior ISA and about £50 in my saver. I then don't have the option to spend what's not there. It'll be a lot more when I've paid off the rewire!

Every little bit helps. If you can shave a few pounds off your bills and put that away, it will add up. If you can save up for bigger expenses like car and house insurance then it's often cheaper to pay a lump sum than instalments. e.g. car tax for our car is £145 as a lump sum but £152 by monthly direct debit. So I put aside £12.10 a month to cover it and pay the lump sum. If you do that and an emergency occurs you could use that pot of savings and select the monthly direct debit option instead at renewal.

specialsubject Wed 06-Apr-16 20:10:27

be aware that premium bonds have just become a worse idea; the odds on winning have increased. Inflation is NOT zero so money in bonds reduces in value.

notice accounts pay even less interest than standard savings accounts, and of course much less than the interest-paying current accounts. The personal savings allowance came in today, which means that unless you are trying to build a long-term tax shelter if rates improve, cash ISAs are now pointless for most people.

Lucsy Sat 09-Apr-16 12:12:22

I save using a building society book
I then do what Pp do which is transfer the odd amounts every Friday and when my ESA went in is transfer £5/£10
It really adds up. Having even a tiny amount in savings has changed things a lot for me. It goes to fix things that break like kettles etc but not easily accessible to spend on something you don't really need
The rest is just planning. It can get very obsessive especially if things are tight.
For me it was a change of thinking. When I had loads of money I would think about what I could buy. Now I think about what I could save.

ScarletPower Sat 16-Apr-16 16:20:33

Have a look at the Natwest Rewards account. It's like a cash back account for paying certain household bills via direct debit -

It costs £3 per month and I have paid 4 payments so far, so £12, but in my rewards cash I am showing as having £49.17 available now with £12.70 still to be paid so I've got £49.87 in cash to request back after I have deducted charges I have paid so far . You can also claim more in rewards but I would rather have the cash. I was banking with Natwest and paying these bills anyway and I don't notice the £3 per month.

Another thing I do is split my food / petrol budget money into a separate account and make a big effort to try and reduce that and put whatever is leftover at the end of the month into a savings account.

scopello Sat 23-Apr-16 13:54:28

Scrutinise your outgoings and basically cutting down on non-essentials. This can simply be taking packed lunches to school/work, reducing the coffee habit, reducing the weekly grocery bill, really being strict about the DCs' activities. We have had a few years when we didn't go on holiday and just had days out because other bills took priority and I didn't want to go down the route of paying by credit card if I couldn't pay it off quickly (i.e. incurring minimal interest). I can live with delayed gratification though - others are different.

Don't compare yourself with others around you. People have different financial priorities.The smallest of savings over time is definitely worth it. Having a cushion however small makes any unforeseen calamity less stressful e.g car repairs, the boiler breaking down etc.

hookiewookie29 Sat 23-Apr-16 20:14:00

Last year we bought one of those unopenable cheap money tins from the pound shop to save some holiday money. We put £2 coins and 20 pences in it. From April to August we had £106. Did it from Xmas to Easter and had £133.You don't miss it if you do it like that.
A couple of weeks ago, I went through my jewelry box and took my unwanted and broken gold to the jewellers. I got £256 so it's worth doing!
Last week, I spent an hour on looking at house, car and caravan insurance as well as breakdown cover and broadband deals. I saved us nearly £500 for the year.
Meal plan.Works all the time!!

dementedma Sat 14-May-16 20:53:46

A credit union account is good for saving small amounts. Also very good for low interest loans if you need one.

Ememem84 Sun 17-Jul-16 22:10:34

We save pound coins £2 coins and 50ps in a jar. Once it's completely full I think we'll have about £600 saved.

I also sweep any odd penny amounts in my account to a savings account. Since January I have £76. Amazing to see it all add up.

Dafadddu Sun 21-Aug-16 08:18:26

I save £2, 20p, 5's 2s & 1s. If i have something i need to save for like a train ticket i use jam jars and label them. The pop in a few £1s or just rummage through my purse. I use an old Steradent type tube to hold my 20p as i can get nearly £15 in it.

I also put my £2 into a sealed Tin and im currently saving up for a few days away with a friend.

If im selling bit on FB i put that into one of the saving jam jars.

I buy 3 sacks of coal a month so come winter i have a good stash.

I can only manage to save £40 into a savings accout each month as my wage is pretty shit and ive clearing a debt. But it is coming down!! I also dave for Christmas vouchers which will be £800 this year.

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