Tips | May 20, 2011

Six tips to boost savings

There are many reasons to put money aside – and many ways to boost savings.

1. Don't delay: The earlier you start, the sooner interest rates will start working for you. And don't spend interest – instead reinvest to get compound growth.

2. Set a goal – and visualise it: Research suggests people may save more if they have a specific goal in mind, be it a holiday, retirement, an emergency fund, university fees or something else. Giving your account an inspirational name, such as "My once in a lifetime golf trip to St Andrews", can help set the mind on the path of boosting savings.

3. Increase income: Cutting back on lattes, lunch out and other indulgences can boost savings but a quicker way to get results can be through increasing income. Negotiating a pay rise is one way – as is taking on an extra part-time job or making money through a hobby. But beware of tax implications and avoid making lifestyle changes that gobble up the extra cash.

4. Save often: Make saving a habit by setting up automatic payments to push money into dedicated accounts. Although it might sound strange, saving €100 a month can be better than depositing €1200 at the end of the year, as more frequent deposits can mean interest earned on interest during the year.

5. Welcome windfalls: If an unexpected tax payment, inheritance or other windfall occurs, think of your savings goal and consider adding the extra to it rather than popping the Champagne and having a large splurge. Similarly, if you get a pay rise, consider earmarking most of the extra cash for savings.

6. Stay strong: Don't be tempted to dip into savings. If unexpected bills land on the doorstep, use an emergency fund to meet the bill and rebuild this saving pot over time. If repeatedly dipping into savings to make ends meet, review your budget.

eZonomics team
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