Everyone knows saving is important. But with life being busy (and expensive!) keeping your savings goal on track can sometimes feel challenging.
As the UK’s savings bank, our mission is to help you save with confidence. That’s why we’ve put together these five practical tips to help you become a better saver.
1. Explore your financial personality
Almost all of us absorb early attitudes and beliefs about money from our parents and close relationships. But that doesn’t necessarily mean these beliefs are correct – or that we can’t change them, even as adults.
Perhaps you recognise yourself as someone who avoids thinking about your finances? Perhaps you make plans to save but struggle to get into a habit? Asking yourself these kinds of questions can help you to recognise your own financial personality traits and to address unhelpful behaviours – and become a better saver in turn.
2. Think about your next savings goal
Maybe you’d love to finally book that all-inclusive holiday you’ve been talking about for years. Maybe you’re after an outdoor pizza oven to really seize the summer. Be clear about what you want – then ask yourself:
- How much money will I need to make this happen?
- When, ideally, would I like to achieve this?
Answering these questions will help you work out how much you’ll need to save per month. If this monthly goal doesn’t feel achievable, you may need to adjust your timeline so you can save less per month over a longer period.
Setting a tangible goal you truly care about will help motivate you to stick to a savings habit that will help you achieve it – especially if you add a concrete timeline.
3. Talk about saving
Having some close family or friends to talk to about what you’re saving for – and anything holding you back from reaching your goal – can be helpful too.
What are you saving for? What’s really holding you back? Sharing your goal could give you extra motivation and confidence. You may well discover that your friends or family are saving for similar things and facing similar challenges. Knowing that somebody else is in the same boat as you can make it easier to stay on track – you can share tips, find solutions together and keep each other motivated.
Talking openly about your savings goal also makes you more accountable – you’ve taken the step of articulating what you want to achieve, so it will feel harder to abandon.
4. Remember Rome wasn’t built in a day
While seeing the bigger picture is important, research suggests those who have a cyclical mindset are more successful when it comes to saving. That means embracing a sense of gradual progress rather than becoming demoralised because you’re not where you want to be savings-wise.
Break down your bigger savings goals into smaller ones. So, if you want to save £500 for a holiday, then you could try to save £100 every month for five months – or a little more or less per month depending on your personal circumstances.
This way, rather than focusing on the £500 you don’t yet have saved up, you can see each smaller amount that you put towards it as a win. This will help to keep you motivated in the long run.
To help, it might make sense to automate the behaviour. By setting up a standing order to your savings account on or close to your payday, saving regularly becomes a habit you don’t really need to think about.
5. Make saving its own reward
Many of us spend for the short-lived excitement we feel when we buy something new, but we can actually get a similar feeling when we save regularly. Watching our savings pot grow can be satisfying in its own way. And by giving pots evocative names – think ‘Henry’s Holiday Fund’ or ‘Fran’s French Lessons’ – you can connect them up with your goals and make all progress feel more satisfying and tangible.
Our easy-access Direct Saver lets you personalise your account name in line with your savings goal so you can see how much you’ve saved towards it. It also gives you a 3.65% gross/AER, variable interest rate and you can get started with just £1. So if your savings aren’t currently working hard for you, how about opening a Direct Saver with us?