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We’ve all got things that we want to save for. Whether we are looking to boost our emergency funds, save for that dream holiday, get a deposit for your first house or just to prove you can.
It is my belief that everyone is capable of saving. And I believe that you should be saving money even if you don’t have something in mind that you want to save for. If you don’t save any money then that means that everything you earnt has been passed on to someone else. Personally I’d rather keep some of it.
Many of us understand the theory behind needing and wanting to save but struggle with putting it into practice. So here’s how to save money fast:
In this age of technology one of the simplest ways to save money is with an app. I have a whole folder of apps in my phone aimed at making or saving me money.
If saving is top of your list of goals, then perhaps you should investigate apps such as Chip or Plum. These apps analyse your spending and calculate what you can afford to save. They then move these small sums of money from your current account into a savings account.
There are difference between the two. For example Chip has its own app whereas Plum operates through Facebook Messenger. Also Chip offers interest on your savings at 1%, but you can build this up to 5% by inviting friends. Plum has access to investment options but this comes with a fee.
Skimming is not a new idea. I’ve been skimming my accounts for years before I realised that it was a thing. SkintDad has an excellent article on it, but in brief it is taking the “fluff” from your bank account and shoving it in your savings.
Let’s say you look at your bank account and you’ve got £57.82 sitting in there. If you are practicing skimming, then you would take £7.82 and put it in your savings account. You repeat this as often as you check your bank accounts.
Eventually these small amounts soon build up to big amounts and you have complete control over the criteria. Hence you could decide to skim to the nearest fiver, or go bold as go down to nearest £10 or even £50.
With this method you can decide where you are sending all that saved money to. This gives you access to the range of savings accounts on the market, ensuring you get market topping interest rates.
Now these are great for those with a competitive edge. Or those that like to join others on social media. Savings challenges are where you set yourself a target and go for it.
The internet is full of ways to make this rather dull sounding idea more exciting though. There are printables for colouring in every time you add to the pot. There are hashtags so you can share your successes. And best of all there are great selections of different challenges to suit your budget or targets.
A great fun example is the 1p challenge. This works by increasing the amount you save by 1p a day, every day for a year. On day one you 1p, day two 2p, day three 3p etc. By the end of the year, you’ll have £667.95 in the bank.
This is the key for me. I utilise my online banking app and set up direct debits to take money out of my current account and out it straight into my savings when I get paid.
For me, this becomes like another bill. I don’t even get to see that money, so I don’t miss it. I’ve got my budget for the month, so I know what I can afford to save. Plus even if saving that money means I’m a bit short that month it gives me a kick up the bottom to make some more. All the while knowing that I’ve already got that money saved.
I find that once I’ve made the commitment to set it up I’m much less likely to want to cancel it too. To be that feels like I’ve let myself down. Consequently I work harder to protect that monthly savings amount.
A classic! Get yourself a simple money box or jar. Everyday empty the coins from your purse or wallet into it. That’s it!
One month, I did this everyday and by the end of the month we had over £50 in there. I hadn’t even noticed this money and was super happy to realise that I had another £50 to add to the savings total.
A more extreme example of this is when my husband decided to chuck all his coins in a big tub for a year or so. We then forgot about this and eventually found it in our loft. Once we counted it out, we had over £200. It was an excellent amount of money to rediscover!
It doesn’t matter what your goals are but when it comes to saving make sure you give yourself the best chance. You’ll soon find that you can save money fast.
Disclaimer: Remember the information you read here does not represent advice. Any ideas or suggestions are just that and may not work for you. Read the full disclaimer here.
Looking After Your Pennies is an eco-friendly personal finance blog written and managed by Charlotte Jessop.
I write on a variety of topics including frugal lifestyle, eco-friendly living, money making ideas and generally how to make your money go further.