Salford, Greater Manchester -- (SBWIRE) -- 12/22/2011 -- It's not long until January 1st 2012 and you may be planning to stop smoking, try a new hobby, or shift any extra weight from all those mince pies.
Budgeting bank account provider thinkbanking is asking people to think about their financial fitness this January and to ditch any bad spending habits that hold them back. The New Year is an excellent time to take stock of our finances following Christmas and begin planning our financial goals for the year ahead.
Research from American Express gives an insight into how much more we spend at Christmas. It estimates that UK adults will spend on average £210 each on 'extra costs' during the festive season, which adds up to around £10.2 billion collectively.
So if you feel like joining the gym on January 1st because you've overindulged, why not take the opportunity to get your finances back in shape too? It's a great time to turn your back on financial bad habits.
A spokesperson for thinkbanking commented:
"Traditionally the New Year is a time for reflection on where we are and where we would like to be in the year ahead - and personal finances are an important area to make improvements in too.
"Many people find they've overspent at Christmas and people who have borrowed money will have to begin thinking about how to pay it back come January - as well as keeping on top of all their usual expenses.
"Mastering your money takes some effort and there are a number of practical things you can do. First and foremost, draw up a financial plan looking at all your important outgoings for the year ahead and draw up a monthly schedule of regular expenses like your mortgage and priority bills.
"It helps to write down the exact dates of things like your car insurance or road tax renewal and family and friends' birthdays so that you can budget for these expenses accordingly and make sure you've got them covered.
"If you plan to repay debt this year, consider 'overpaying' your debts where you can, which could save you a surprising amount in interest charges overall. If money is tight in the New Year, consider ways of living 'frugally' and cut unnecessary spending to give your cash flow a boost. You don't have to make huge sacrifices - shop with coupons when you buy groceries, for example, or car share your journey to work with a colleague to save on petrol expenses.
"It's a good idea to review our spending habits regularly so that we can identify areas for improvement. Take advantage of the motivation you may have this New Year and take charge of your finances so that you can achieve your financial goals - whether that's making home improvements, saving for a holiday or paying off debt."
Notes to Editors
thinkbanking provides access to a current bank account that makes it easier to budget, by ring-fencing money needed for regular commitments, including savings. The 'Money Manager' service helps customers to manage their accounts effectively. The account comes with predictive banking which can let customers know if they are running short for their necessary expenses. thinkbanking accounts don't require a credit check and are available to UK residents over the age of 18, who can prove their identity.
For more information, visit the thinkbanking website at http://www.thinkbanking.com.