Sunday, 14 June 2015

Golden nuggets of advice



I have written a few posts recently about saving and how important it has become to us as a family. I have admitted that my husband and i really are the worst at saving and budgeting our money. In hindsight, i wish we had started saving when we first got married because we would be in a great situation now when it comes to finding a house deposit and preparing us for a mortgage but i cannot dwell on those things. What i can do is learn and advice our girls on what we didn't do and help to guide them with their own finances.

As a child, i do remember saving. I wrote previously about having my own bank account that i would take my savings book and a pound coin each week into the school hall and get it stamped. I remember saving quite a lot and being excited when i got to take it all out and spend at toys r us! I also remember saving 2p's for our summer holidays away so we could play in the 2p machines at the arcades. I remember so vividly getting half way to cornwall one year and remembering that i had left my big bag of 2ps behind and being so upset as i had saved them for months and months and asked people in the family to give me all of their spare 2ps! My parents always encouraged me and i always remember the excitement at seeing them pile up in my little bag!

The girls have started to earn pocket money from doing photoshoots for me and doing little chores around the house such as tidying their rooms and scraping their plates after dinner. Mia seems to have a fascination with cleaning the bathroom sink. I will often here water running at 3 in the morning, and she has climbed up on her stool and gotten so tissue and has been cleaning the sink! Their money boxes are nearly full and we are getting to the point now where we need to decide what to do with their money. Neither really want to spend their money and i think there is such a huge excitement for both of them knowing that they have all this money saved, that they don't want to spend it and for it to go away! I have been thinking about what sort of advice i would want to pass onto them and i hope that Gilles and i can guide them as much as we can to help them understand about saving and how important it is to give yourself a secure future. We can share our own mistakes with them and explain how we regret not saving sooner but that they can learn from our mistakes and do a better job than we both did. Here are a few tips i would love to pass down to them.

-When you are giving birthday/Christmas money, spend what you had set your heart on and then put the rest away. Don't spend the rest of the money on something you don't really want just because you want to spend it. There might be something you really want a few months and you will have a good start with the savings to get that item
-Use a bank account or current account to keep that extra money safe when you are older. If you don't have the money burning a hole in your pocket, then you are least likely to spend it!
-Use a big pot to collect all your spare change. Once the pot is full, you can take it to a machine that turns it into a voucher. We have started to do this now and it will be our holiday spending money but you could also pay for Christmas presents or even Christmas dinner with just spare change you saved during the year.
-Think long term. A house is such a huge security and financial investment. Once you are in rented accommodation, it is so hard to then save up for a deposit on a house. I would advise making that a priority for your savings.

(this is a collaborative post)
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