Around eight in ten parents (82%) of children aged 18 and under are concerned about what they can afford in the year ahead, with the top worry for a third of parents being able to afford a family holiday². The research has been revealed in the new Barclays Your Bank report³, looking at parents’ attitudes to managing their finances and money management concerns.
However, while parents’ financial concerns may make them feel like they need a degree to handle day-to-day household finances, the report reveals that many are overlooking the fact that they already possess valuable business nous to run their home. The Your Bank report reveals that one solution to help parents better manage their finances is to adopt a business brain.
Kate Garraway, Ambassador for Barclays Your Bank report said, “The Your Bank report found that many, many parents are really worried about their finances. However it’s clear that the more we bury our heads in the sand, the more worried we become. It’s not surprising that keeping track of our finances is not always a priority given our busy lives and in some cases aversion to financial planning. But the research actually found that our working lives have taught us a great many skills that when applied in the home, could really help.
With more than 7 million⁴ parents (56 per cent) admitting their family budget is under more strain than it was in July 2012, the Barclays Your Bank reports shows that these problems are exacerbated among parents with more than one child in the household (58%). In addition, parents are still fretting in the longer term (July 2015 onwards), with parents worried about how they will send their children to university (28 per cent), save enough into a pension (25 per cent) and pay off their mortgage (22 per cent).
Kate Garraway continues “In addition to our apparent business acumen and transferable skills, there are a number of great tools and services out there to help get financial planning firmly back on the family agenda. What’s more, the nation can now share its ideas on what would make their everyday money management easier at barclays.co.uk/yourbank”.
1. All aboard! Get the family together and assess your outgoings from the past year and the year ahead. It’s important to understand the whole family’s needs and ambitions – whether that’s a school trip or a new family iPad. Taking time out as a family can help you to balance essentials and luxuries and most importantly – keep everyone happy!
2. Know your budget – It’s all too easy to spend subconsciously but track your income and expenditure doesn’t have to be a time consuming chore. Find out what free tools and services your bank has on offer to help you manage a monthly family budget and before you know it you’ll be able to spot any unused direct debits and non-essential spend.
3. Get online – Check out what the internet has to offer to keep on top of family finances from easy to use money saving tools to budget planners to help you keep track of your spending. Most banks now also offer free online or mobile banking services so you can quickly access up to date information on the go. Free text alerts are also a great way to help stay one step ahead of going into the red, so you no longer have to worry!
4. Market research - collect prices online on your everyday shopping and longer-term purchases, such as insurance. Retailers are constantly looking to attract new customers through offers and search engines, so shop around. To save even more time and money, check out price comparison sites for the most competitive offers.
5. Get the best deal - assess where your family spends the most money and start making some essential changes, from switching electricity supplier to moving to PAYG. It’s all about what you actually need and use. Don’t forget to haggle, there is often room for more savings to be made as well as ‘price – match’ deals. Why not make it into a playful competition and give out a prize for the family member who finds the biggest money savings?
The Barclays Your Bank report is published as Barclays launches a new commitment to listen to customers and make changes. For more information visit barclays.co.uk/yourbank and follow #YourBank on Twitter for the latest updates.
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