Back when blogging was completely brand new to me, one of my very first posts set out my aims for 2018. I have enjoyed reading it back realising just how far I have come with my intentions this year. In a similar fashion to rounding up my monthly goals, I thought I would do the same for my goals for the year:
- Use “Piggybanking” / Money Envelopes
This one gets a massive tick as I have consistently managed to achieve this. For those who don’t know, this is where you set your budget for the month and then set up individual pots or savings accounts for each amount. Some people prefer to do this physically with cash envelopes but I set up multiple savings accounts with my main bank so I can instantly transfer between them – for example groceries, petrol, spending money etc.
My main problem before I started this was I would see I had, for example £500 left in my bank and think oh great, I can afford to buy those £40 shoes then.” But not take into account I would need to fill my car up in a couple of weeks, do groceries etc. In the past this would lead me to using my credit card for essentials such as petrol at the end of the month. I am pleased to say due to piggybanking this has not happened once in 2018, hooray!
- Use Yolt to track my finances
I never actually did this but only because it has been superseded by my Starling bank app instead. I still think it is a great idea to track your spending using Yolt or a smart bank app to keep track of your spending habits.
- Set up an “Everyday” emergency fund / Sink fund
I hadn’t even heard of the term “sinking funds” a year ago, so I coined my own term for it. I have done quite well with this – as my intentions were not to use my credit card for the likes of hen parties and concert tickets which I have managed to achieve. I just wish there was more in the bank to show for it – but after 3 hen parties, 3 weddings, my own 40th birthday and several friend’s 40ths in 2018 it’s no wonder I’m back at square one with zero savings! But I have some great memories and no extra debt to show for it – result!
Next year I intend to set up several sinking funds using the handy feature on my Starling bank app so I can take control of my savings and ensure buying concert tickets doesn’t mean I don’t have enough left for my car’s MOT!
- Sort my Christmas finances using Plum
Another big tick for this one – if you’ve never heard of Plum then check out my post about it here.
Over the course of the year Plum managed to set aside just over £450.00 for me without me even noticing which is no mean feat on a part time wage where almost every penny is accounted for. It meant I could pay for Christmas without feeling the pinch and so I intend to do the same this year. My lifetime savings with it since April 2017 are £965.04, which is an amazing amount considering it is all just loose change skimmed off my balance without me noticing!
What else did I achieve in 2018?
As I was new to the blogging world and my money saving journey when I wrote this post I had many discoveries along the way in terms of how I could save – and more importantly – make money. These are my other biggest achievements:
- Consistently making £300+ extra per month(July onwards) in side hustles
- Drastically cutting my own spending on clothes, makeup, hairdressers etc
- Decluttering my wardrobe, makeup and old possessions and making money in the process
- Completing Baby Step 1 – but then the boiler broke to the tune of £700 – ouch!
- Completely stopping to use my credit card and paying over £1000 of the balance off.
Some of these were already in progress even though I didn’t refer to them in my goals, however finding ways to make more money was not something I had considered this time last year.
I’m really pleased with the progress I’ve made in 2018 – it’s more than I could have imagined!
I’ve already set my goals for 2019 which you can read here.