Bring your own lunch to work, cancel your Netflix subscription, and reduce the number of takeaway coffees… Sounds familiar? Articles covering various savings tips rarely offer anything new for those interested in growing their savings further. Therefore, instead of individual tips, we present six different saving trends and methods that you can start today.
1. 52-week saving challenge
For those interested in different saving trends, the 52-week saving challenge might be familiar already. But let’s clarify what it is.
The idea of the challenge is to save weekly. And this amount goes up incrementally. Essentially, you save an amount of money equivalent to the week number each week for a year. you save £1 for each week you are on in the year. So week one = £1 and week 52 = £52.
By the end of the year, you’ll have a total of £1,378 saved. This challenge will make saving easier, especially on small incomes.
If the savings accumulated at the end of the year seem too high, the challenge can also be done in reverse. For example, you can start with £52 a week or make deposits in a different order depending on how much money you have available at any given time.
2. 365 day saving challenge
A similar saving trend to the 52-week challenge is a 365-day challenge. Unlike the weekly challenge, in the 365 challenge money is put into savings every day of the week. So, on Monday you save £1, on Tuesday £2, on Wednesday £3 and so on, until you get to Sunday when you save £7. You then return to £1 on Monday and repeat this every week.
A saving deposit of a few pounds a day can feel easier for many compared to the amounts of a 52-week challenge. The money will also accumulate a little more and by the end of the year, you will have £1,456 saved.
3. No-spend challenge
No-spend challenges have become a popular saving trend over the past couple of years. It refers to a period of time in which you intentionally chose not to spend any unnecessary money.
During the challenge, you’re only allowed to spend money on bills and necessities. Most people opt for a no-spend week or month. Typical categories where spending is allowed include:
- Fuel for your vehicle or necessary public transportation
- Pet food/litter
While a no-spend challenge can be a good way to save money quickly, it can also be a useful spending detox that allows you to spot any toxic money habits.
4. Saving & budgeting apps
A modern saver can take advantage of technology. Those who are tired of Excel spreadsheets should try apps that specialise in budgeting and saving. Here are some examples of apps that can make everyday savings easier:
- Chip: Tracks your spending habits and works out how much money you can afford to put away on a regular basis. The money is transferred automatically with the idea that you’ll hardly notice it.
- Cleo: Connects to your primary current account and analyses your spending habits so you can see where exactly your money is going. You can also set up notifications for when you are approaching your limits.
- Emma: Connects to all your cards, current accounts, credit accounts, savings, investments and so on to make sure they’re all in one place. This allows you to track your expenses and spending habits easier.
- Moneybox: Round Up feature allows you to save the spare change by rounding up your card transactions to the nearest pound and saving the difference. For example, if you spend £2.50 on a coffee, the app automatically saves 50p for you).
- Plum: Links directly to your bank account and works out exactly how much you can afford to save without you needing to do a thing. This app is aimed at people who struggle to save as it transfers the money you can afford to save across without any intervention from you.
- Digital challenger banks: Many online-only banks, such as Monzo or Monese, have useful functions that can help you to save more. For example, you can set a budget or get spending notifications in the apps.
5. Envelope budgeting method
In the envelope method, you put cash into envelopes, each of which is for a certain type of spend. These can include food expenses, clothing, and restaurant bills. Expenses that cannot be paid in cash such as rent are excluded from this.
Once the cash has been divided into envelopes, you can use the money for the intended expenditure during the week or month. But you can only spend as much as the envelope for each expense has.
The effectiveness of this saving trend is largely psychological. It’s easier to be mindful of your own spending when you use cash instead of cards. With today’s contactless payment methods in particular, it’s easy to forget that tapping a card actually removes money from your account.
Kakeibo is an old Japanese saving and budgeting method. It’s like a combination of a diary and a ledger. At the beginning of each month, you write down all your income and compulsory expenses in your kakeibo. Then, you’ll set a savings target for the month. During the month, all expenses are recorded in the kakeibo and at the end of the month it’s time to see if the savings target has been achieved.
Kakeibo differs from ordinary budgeting tables in that, in addition to income and expenses, you should add notes every time you spend money. This is meant to deepen your understanding of your consumption habits and encourage mindful spending. In addition, kakeibo teaches its user that saving is not just about missing out on things but spending money the right way.