Struggling with Bank Charges - Eastern Savings and Loans

Struggling with Bank Charges

Posted on May 14, 2024

Keep getting stung by bank charges?

Managing your household expenses can be challenging, especially when you have to balance weekly income with monthly bills. Avoiding unnecessary bank charges may seem tough, but creating a plan doesn’t have to be overwhelming.

Get started:

Understanding your income and expenses, along with the timing of when money flows in and out, is so important. To begin, it’s best to figure out the days you get paid and if it’s weekly, every four weeks, or monthly. Using a calendar, whether it’s on your phone or a paper one,

Prioritise key bills

Prioritise setting aside money for essential expenses like rent or mortgage, water or electric and gas bills, and council tax, before considering any other spending. It’s crucial to ensure that the basics are covered first. See if you can set it so these payments go out the same day or the day after you get paid/income into your account. You can also use “saving pots” to put weekly or fortnightly money into, for your monthly bills. The Engage Account we offer calls them envelopes, and you can set it so the payment goes straight from your “envelope”. You just need to work out how much from your weekly or fortnightly money needs to go in, and set up a regular transfer to that “Envelope”. Other bank accounts with a similar service have different names for these pots, so have a look around and see which type of account works best for you.

Juggling the payments

Paying for your phone, internet, debts, and other important bills can sometimes lead to bank charges because they may come out at different times of the month. To avoid this, you can ask your service provider if they can change the payment date to match when you receive your money. Another option is to set aside money in separate pots specifically for these bills just like your key bills.

What’s left

When using the “saving pot” method to manage your money you first set aside all the money you need for your bills. Then, whatever is left can be used for your spending. Some people prefer to do it the other way around. They calculate how much money they need for bills and transfer the rest into a separate account. Both methods are great in separating bills from spending money for things like food and travel. Just remember to keep an eye on the account where your bills are paid from, in case you need to add more money if one of your bills is higher than usual this month.

Remember special occasions and unexpected emergencies

It’s always a good idea to save some money for special occasions like Christmas, birthdays, emergencies, or when you want to go out. You can create a special place to save this money, like a separate envelope or pot, or you can keep it in a different account from your main bank account. We have instant-access savings accounts available, where you can set up a transfer to deposit money into your Credit Union account whenever you receive money. Then, when you need the money, you can call us or use online banking to withdraw it. Remember, you don’t have to save a specific amount, just save what you can afford and when you can. This can give you peace of mind, knowing that you already have money saved for Christmas, birthdays, or anything else you may need.

Try to spread what is left out

It’s amazing how fast your money can disappear on day-to-day spending. But if you set a budget for the week, you can make sure you don’t spend too much and have enough until you get more money. This way, you won’t have to worry about having “poor” weeks or feeling stressed while waiting for your next lot of money.

Take a look at our blog post about making a spending diary. It’s a great way to keep track of how you spend your money every day. By doing this, you can find areas where you can spend less, like buying unnecessary things or ordering takeout too often. When you review your spending for a whole month, it might motivate you to make some changes and have more money for the things you really enjoy.

The Engage Account – it could be cheaper if you pay a monthly charge.

If you currently pay for your bank account, it is worth comparing the cost with our Engage Account. The Engage Account only costs £3.50 a month, and it has no charge for failed payments! You can also earn Cashback from selected retailers, such as ASDA, or Sainsburys. Which can offset the monthly cost if you do your weekly shopping from them. The monthly charge is a flat rate, which includes all the Envelopes and a free mobile app, to help you keep track of your spending.

Find out more about the Engage Account.

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Members of ABCUL

Members of ABCUL

Your money is protected up to £85,000

Your money is protected up to £85,000

Authorised and Regulated by the Prudential Regulation Authority

Authorised and Regulated by the Prudential Regulation Authority

Members of ABCUL

Your money is protected up to £85,000

Authorised and Regulated by the Prudential Regulation Authority