DH and I save a decent amount each month but it all goes into one savings account (once ISAs are topped up). We then pay for big things out of this (furniture, holidays, Christmas, insurances, mot/car etc) but we'd like to divvy it out better so we've got, say, a Christmas pot, a car expense pit, a holiday pot.
Do I just open a gazillion savings accounts with our bank (Nationwide) or is there another way to do it?
This is the reason I opened savings accounts with ING Direct, because you could open different accounts and give them names, so one called 'Christmas' one called 'Holidays' etc. Literally called that as the account names. They got taken over by Barclays though so I don't know how it would work for new customers. I now have 'Direct Access Issue 2' accounts, but they do have 'Christmas' and 'Holidays' as kind of sub headings iyswim.
I second ynab, it has revolutionised my finances and the peace of mind I have from using it is huge, despite there not being much money.
The developer advocates having just one account. And use the software to budget money into categories. (You name your own categories according to your priorities.) Not only is it software but it gave me a different method of budgeting. Worth every penny.
I tried the multiple pots but found it didn't work as I might end up with money in my Xmas pot say, but short in my car pot and would have to transfer out if the Xmas one for car things then never/not fully top it up again, for example.
Now I go with ISA, instant access and 'never touch'. Top up the ISA as much as I can, instant access for putting money to the side for things that will come up in the short-medium term and never touch is to squirrel away bits of money (less in this at the min but more long term). I do this with both joint and personal savings. The thing that works is having a spreadsheet with deductions coming out against the relevant months- either recurring things like Xmas, one offs planned DIY, holidays etc. That means we can see whether we'll have enough by that date and if so funnel the money off elsewhere (ISA/never touch).