How I Save: The HR analyst who has saved £17,000 in two yearsDecember 10, 2020
Our weekly series How I Save is all about money – how we save it, how we spend it, and how we can improve our personal finance skills.
Each week we ask a different person to track their spending for a week and share it here.
Then we get an expert to give them some tips on how they can save better.
This time around we’re chatting with Sadie*, 26.
Sadie is an HR analyst living in London, who’s managed to save up a sizeable chunk of money despite having a tendency to impulse buy.
How Sadie saves:
I earn £27,000 a year and in my savings account right now I have £17,000.
I’ve saved this much money by budgeting and trying to control my spending. I also live at home with my parents.
It has taken me about two years to save this much.
I’m saving for a mortgage deposit and aiming to buy within the next two years
The main way I save is by putting away £500 to £1,000 a month. When it comes to saving, I save, spend and invest, in that order. I haven’t automated my savings because I like the feeling of topping it up myself each month.
I struggle with saving because I’m an impulse buyer and I like to buy luxury, inessential items. For example, I bought an £155 Louis Vuitton silk bandeau that I’ve only worn once
I’ve been working from home since March so I’ve been able to save an extra £140 a month which I previously spent on my monthly commute.
I also saved an extra £225 a month, previously spent on driving lessons which were on-hold due to lockdown.
Now I want to have an emergency fund, separate to the money I’m saving for a mortgage deposit, but I have a habit of spending money before I have it using a credit card – although I do pay it off each month before it attracts interest.
I also started investing and trading during lockdown as a result of the low bank interest rates.
How Sadie spends:
- Phone bill: £58.40
- Bank reward scheme: £4 (I pay £4 and get a £7 reward so a £3 profit)
- Contacts: £6.50
- Virtual office: £18 (For a dormant company)
- Groceries: £55 (I live at home so don’t have to spend too much)
- Contribution: £60 (Money I spend helping others e.g. charity or supporting small businesses)
- Driving lessons: £225
- Rent: £0
A week of spending:
Monday: I didn’t spend any money today because I try to wait until the new month starts (after payday) before I start spending. This doesn’t always work.
I live and work at home so I ate leftovers.
Total spent on Monday: £0
Tuesday: I bought a gold watch for £156.58 during the Cyber Week sales as an early Christmas gift to myself. I’ve wanted a watch for ages so it’s not an impulse buy, but it’s definitely inessential and I bought it using my credit card.
I ate leftovers again because I haven’t had the time to plan out my meals and order groceries.
Total spent on Tuesday: £156.58
Wednesday: I didn’t spend any money today.
Total spent on Wednesday: £0
Thursday: I ordered Caribbean food for £14 because I didn’t fancy eating what was available in the house.
Total spent on Thursday: £14
Friday: I bought a personalised Christmas book for my niece for £36.97.
Total spent on Friday: £36.97
Saturday: I finally ordered groceries for £56.33.
Total spent on Saturday: £56.33
Sunday: I bought two pairs of jeans for my nephew for £31.98 and two balloon cocktail glasses for Christmas festivities for £9.50.
Total spent on Sunday: £41.48
Total spent this week: £305.36
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