Spending today

  • When you get your pocket money or, once you are older and start to receive wages from employment, it can be really exciting and you may want to spend your money all at once. However, budgeting is important. Having a budget plan can help you work out exactly what’s coming in and what’s going out, so you know how much you have to spend each week or month.

    A budget is a plan that details all of your income (pocket money/wages)  and outgoings (going out, mobile phone bill, music streaming subscriptions etc) and once you have deducted your outgoings from your income you will be left with the amount of money you have spare - this known as your disposable income. From this, you can decide how much you might want to save.

    Without a budget, it can be easy to overspend which may lead to not having money left to save. Sticking to a budget will help you manage your money better and make it easier to keep track of everything.  Getting into good habits now will put you in good stead for when you are older. Look at our Financial Quiz which will help you to get on the right track with your financial habits. 

  • When it comes to buying things there are many ways to pay. You can choose between cash, using a debit card or paying electronically from your bank or building society account. It’s always better to try and save money to pay for big purchases rather than borrowing from family or friends.

    When you are 18 and over you may think about taking out a loan or a credit card. The advantage of paying this way is that you will be able to spread the cost, particularly if you are making a large purchase. Credit cards and loans are means of borrowing money which can be paid back in monthly instalments. However, and like all forms of borrowing, you will have to pay interest (see jargon buster) on the amount borrowed and, on a credit card, the interest rates can be high.

  • Purchases such as food or train/bus tickets to school/college are needed to be able to live. But luxury purchases such as streaming subscriptions or eating out, while nice aren’t a necessity.

    Thinking about what a necessity is and what isn’t can help you better manage your money and help you avoid spending on non-essential items.

    While it may seem like everything costs money, there are things you can do that are free such as going to the local park or going to a museum in your local area or having friends round.

  • When you make purchases there are often reward schemes available, such as cashback offers or loyalty schemes that give you vouchers or points to spend. Making the most of these reward programs can help you earn extra cash that can be put in your savings account or used as a discount against any future purchases.

    There are some sites that give you money back when you make a purchase through them*, this is a great way to save money if you are already buying something in the first place.

    * Age restrictions may apply.

  • Checking your bank account regularly is easy with mobile banking and can help you keep track of what’s coming in and what’s going out so you can manage your money better.