What are the best money saving ideas I can work on during the holidays to get my finances sorted for 2011?
I want to take my Christmas break to myself softed.
At the end of each year I like giving myself an hour to go through each of my statements to see if I am subscribed to anything that I am no longer using. This time I noticed that I am paying a monthly fee for a gym I rarely visit and DVD monthly rental plan that I use infrequently.
With just a few phone calls I was able to save myself £50 per month, or £600 for 2011. | 12.30.10 @ 00:21
If you want to lose weight (bear with me!) one of the things to do is to change your diet - permanently and gradually. If you "go on a diet" the evidence is that, eventually, you will come off the diet and weigh more than when you started.
So, perhaps you need to change your financial diet. Going through your expenditure to see what you can alter here and there will be a valuable exercise, as will be the setting up of various savings plans to salt away some of the money saved. But if you are going on a financial diet, with the likelihood of coming off again, you may not succeed in the long run.
It is all to do with attitudes and with what you want - think about this carefully. What do you want now? What do you want for the future? And where do the compromises lie between the two? Be realistic and set your goals within your means and don't try to be too enthusiastic by depriving yourself more than you can really tolerate - remember, you are setting up a long-term living plan within a sustainable budget.
It is generally accepted that it takes about 6 months for any change of behaviour to become the norm. Keep a light watch on your spending patterns and review it all again, say about every three months. If you have slipped, shrug your shoulders and review it all again (don't just give up and say you have 'failed', or whip yourself with anger!). It may be that you have been a little too tight in your aims, in which case loosen those aims a little.
Your aims can be driven off track if something happens to interrupt your (or your partner's, if you have one) earning power. So, as part of the long-term planning process, consider whether an element of insurance as well as an element of long term savings and pension savings would be valuable
Please contact me with your email address if you would like me to send you a budget calculator (runs on Excel) which might help - Click the unicorn logo or put 'Jigsaw Financial Solutions' into the Find and Adviser section. | 01.03.11 @ 12:42