Author: Paul

Is it Worth Tying my Money up to get More Interest?

If you have some money that you want to keep in a savings account, then you may be considering which savings account to use. There are a lot of different ones to pick between and it is good to have a think about what you want from an account so that you can choose the one that is best for you. You will find that there are advantages and disadvantages to different types of savings account and it is worth being aware of these so that you can make the right decision for you.

Amount of Interest

You will find that the amount of interest that you can get from different types of accounts will vary a lot and you will need to decide what will suit your needs. It is always tempting to go for the higher interest options, but there will normally be conditions associated with this which means that you could find that they will not always suit you. For example, most of us would like to have some money available instantly for emergencies. There are many instant access savings account but these tend to pay very low interest amounts because they will not be able to invest your money as they will not know when you will need it. However, there are accounts where you have to leave your money in for longer and you will get paid more interest. You will need to decide whether you are happy to do this in return for getting more money back. There are different types of account and the main ones will either make you give notice to withdraw or tie your money up for a certain period of time.

Notice for Withdrawals

If you use a notice account it will mean that you will have to ask for a withdrawal a certain amount of days in advance of you needing the money. This means that you will need to be organise and think well in advance. You may need to give 30,60 or even 90 days notice depending on the bank or building society that you are with. The actual amount of days will vary a lot. You may find that with some accounts you will be able to make an instant withdrawal but you will forfeit some interest or it might be limited to a certain amount of withdrawals or a certain value. It is therefore very important to check out the specific terms and conditions of the account so that you know what you are getting yourself in for before you start.

Tying Money Up

There are some savings accounts where you will need to keep the money in for a certain time period. This will tend to be a number of years, perhaps one but often three or five, but it will vary. You may not be able to take your money out at all during this time or you may find that you will be able to make a withdrawal but lose interest. As with the above, it will depend on the bank or building society and their specific terms and conditions.

It is important to understand exactly how a particular account works when you are considering it. Then think about whether you will be happy to tie your money up. It will be likely to give you more interest, but you might want to think about whether you feel that you might need the money in the meantime and how you will cope without it. It might be sensible to keep some in an instant access account in case you need it quickly and then tie the rest up.

Shall I Get a Second Credit Card?

It can be surprisingly easy to max out our credit cards and then find that we do not have enough money to buy things that we want to. Or we may find that we have a credit limit that is so small that it is not enough to buy everything that we want. It can therefore seem like the natural thing to do – to get a second card. However, it is worth making sure you have a good think about this idea and check that it is the right thing to do before you do it. You may otherwise regret your choice.

Will it Encourage Overspending?

It is good to start by considering whether you will find that the card might encourage you to overspend. If we have access to lots of money then there will always be a temptation to spend it. Some people are very well disciplined and will use it very sensibly, but others find it much harder. It is a good idea to think about which category you fall into and whether it is likely that you will struggle to resist using the cards to treat yourself to things or whether you are sure that you will be able to restrain yourself. You should be able to think about what you have been like in the past and base your decision on that. Perhaps think about whether you have previously managed to have a credit card and be sensible with it, you already have one so consider what you are like with that and how you think you might be with another one.

Consider Repayment

It is also worth thinking about the repayment of the card. It is easy to forget about this with a credit card because they do not need to be repaid quickly. You will get a statement and have the option of just repaying a minimum amount and if you do this, then you will repay the interest and often just a very small amount of what you owe. This means that it can take a very long time to repay the debt and you will keep paying interest on it. This can add up to be very expensive, but it is hard to see that impact as you just see the monthly interest amount and you may not even take that much notice of it. Therefore, it is wise to actually calculate how much that is for a year and that may motivate you to repay more. Many people set up their credit cards so that the full balance owed is repaid in full each month. You can set up a direct debit to do this and this can be a better idea as it means that you will not have to pay any interest at all. However, you will need to make sure that you have enough money to do this and so you will need to keep a close check on what you are buying with your card so that you are sure that you are not spending more than you can afford to repay. With two cards this could be difficult to track and you may also find that you will have access to more credit than you can possibly repay in one go.

Credit Report Impact

It is also worth considering the impact that having two credit cards will have on your credit report. It will make it look like you have a need to borrow lots of money and this will not necessarily look good to anyone looking at your credit report. The type of people looking will be potential lenders or landlords and this might mean that you will need to consider whether this is something you want. If you are looking to rent or to borrow more money, then this could have an impact.

Will Paying Off my Debt Mean Huge Lifestyle Changes?

It can be hard to imagine that you will be able to repay all of your debt at times, without imagining that you will have to make huge changes to your lifestyle. However, there are things that you can do which will not be huge changes and will still help you to reduce your debt. The more that you are prepared to change, the quicker you will repay the debt. However, you will still be able to make steps towards repaying it without having to make big changes.

Stop Borrowing Money

It can be a really good start to stop borrowing money. So, try really hard to not use your credit cards or store cards and stop using your overdraft. When you want things just use the money that you have rather than borrowing the money to do so. If you have lots of debt, it is unlikely that you will be able to get that much more and therefore you could find that you will be limited with your options anyway. However, as we repay debt it can be tempting to start using it again, so try to stop that temptation and then you will be able to be much more successful in repaying it.

Swap to a Cheaper Lender

It can be worth seeing whether you can swap to a cheaper lender. If you have a selection of debts then you may have to look at each one and see if you can swap. Make sure that you are comparing lenders carefully and that you are not just looking at the interest rates, but at other things that they might be charging for as well. Some may have fees when you switch from them and others when you switch to them as well, so you will need to take note of this as well. However, despite this, you are likely to find that you will be able to switch to a different lender and pay less money for your loan. This will mean that you will have less to repay as a result and the difference can add up over the months and years.

Repay a Little Extra

It might not be too difficult to pay just a little extra towards each debt. Even if you just pay a few pounds extra it will make a difference to the debt and the amount of interest that you are paid but it will not make a bit difference to you. It is worth thinking about whether you will be able to do this and therefore benefit from being able to pay your debt off more quickly. Think about whether you normally have a little money left at the end of each month and whether you will be able to use this towards repaying some of your debts.

Try to Pay Less for What you Buy

It is also worth trying to pay less money out for the things that you buy all of the time. It is not that hard to switch suppliers, providers, retailers and brands to cheaper ones and for many of the swaps you will not even notice any difference. For example, switching electricity provider can save money but the electric that you get will be the same. Then if you make a selection of swaps, you should find that you will not be paying out so much money. That will allow you to have some money available for paying off the debt and you will not have to give up buying anything. The more things that you can swap for cheaper one, the quicker you will be able to repay the debt.

Is it Good Value to Buy Cheaper Clothes?

There are many ways that we could save money and buying cheaper clothing is one of them. However, it is important to make sure that we are getting good value for money. With clothing, we will want to make a few checks before buying anything to make sure of this.

Will it go Out of Fashion?

IF you like keeping up with fashions with regards to what you are wearing then you could find that you will not wear clothes for very long. If you like to change what you are wearing each season, then it could be worth paying less money for them. Hopefully at the end of the season you will give them to charity or sell them if you do not intend to wear them again. However, you will be better off paying less for them if you are going to stop wearing them very quickly. You will not need them to last so you may as well not pay much for them. Some people prefer to buy clothes that are more classic in their style so that they will work through lots of seasons and will not go out of fashion so quickly. It can be worth paying more for these as you will get more wear out of them.

Will it Fit me?

It is worth also thinking about whether clothing will fit you for a long time. Some of us will change size and shape a lot and therefore we may find that we will not fit in clothes for that long. So, this is worth thinking about as well. There might be clothes that you can change the size of, perhaps with elastic buttons inside or drawstrings, so it will not matter so much. You may also find that some clothing can stretch to fit or will suit you even if it is baggy or tight and so it can be worth thinking about this when you are purchasing things as well. If it seems like it would fit different sizes then it could be worth paying more for it compared with something that only works for a very specific size.

Will it Last?

It is good to also think about the quality of the clothes. Sometimes they are made from inferior materials which means that they do not last long. They may be thin and wear through or just fall apart. Therefore, it is good to think about what you are looking for. If you are not bothered about it lasting very long then it can be better to buy something that is cheaper. However, if you want to make sure that it lasts then you may have to pay more in order to get better quality items.

So, whether it is better to buy cheaper clothing will depend on what you are looking for. It is worth remembering that some clothing is just expensive because you are paying for a brand name. Other clothing is more expensive because it is better quality. You will need to think about what you need and then this will help you to decide what will be better for you. If you want your money to last, then it can be better to spend a bit more and find something that is good quality and will not wear out but take care to make sure that it will not go out of fashion too quickly. Sometimes going really cheap and buying second hand can be good, especially if you do not have a lot of money to spend and you may be able to find quality items in classic designs at low prices.

Easy Ways to Reduce your Supermarket Spend

We will often find that when we go to the supermarket, we will end up spending a lot more money than we intend to. This can be annoying but also can mean that we do not have enough money left for the other things that we need to buy. Therefore, it can be a good idea to think about things that you could try to make sure that you are not spending more than you really need to.

Take a List

This is a well known thing but it really works. Taking a list can help you to focus on buying what you need. If you have no idea what you need, then you could end up buying things that you do not need. If they are items that will go off quickly it means that you could end up wasting food that you cannot eat quickly enough or eating more than you need. Either way you will be spending more money than you need to. You may also find that if you do not take a list you might not buy everything that you need to and this could mean that you have to return and you could end up spending even more money then.

Compare Prices

It is wise to make sure that you compare the prices on everything that you are buying. You will find that there are several different brands of many things that you buy or alternatives that you can buy. Make sure that you compare the prices of these and you will be able to check that you are not paying more than necessary for them.

Avoid Sale Areas

When we see things on sale it will tempt us to buy them. This can sound great because we will be buying things that cost less money. However, we could end up buying the sale items in addition to the items that we normally buy. We may also find that we will think something is cheap because it is on offer but then realise that it is actually still more expensive than what we normally buy. You may find, for example, that supermarket brands are still cheaper than big brands even if they are on offer. If the brands you normally buy are on offer, you will spot them when you are buying them at their normal place.

Avoid Tempting Aisles

There are certain aisles that might tempt us to spend a lot of money that we do not really need to spend. For example, avoid the alcohol, fizzy drinks, crisps, biscuits, cakes or sweets aisles and you will save a whole lot of money and avoid buying things that you do not really need anyway. You could also avoid the processed food aisles as they tend to be expensive as well. Generally, the healthier, unprocessed foods tend to be around the edges of the supermarkets and it can be best to try to focus on shopping around there and do the bulk of your shopping in these areas.

Take Your Own Bags

Although carrier bags seem pretty cheap, the cost of them can really add up. If you buy bags every time that you shop then the cost of this will really add up over a month and even more over a year. Take your own bags all of the time and you will save a lot of money. It will cost money to buy a reusable bag, but most of us have some anyway and once you have soe decent ones you will be able to use them lots of times and it will be cheaper than buying bags each time you shop.