Budget loving residents are saving up to £200
each month by simply keeping an eye on their spending
ONCE a stigma for being poor, being 'on a budget'
is now saving residents in the North West up to £200 each month as it becomes an
everyday method of money-saving. A study by TopCashback.co.uk, reveals 65% of
residents are now on a weekly or monthly budget with 64% doing so to prevent
overspending rather than to save. A further 18% say they budget to feel in
control of their outgoings, compared to the 11% who are tightening their belts
in a bid to reach a savings goal.
► Budgeting tools
21% of residents in the North West say they use a budgeting tool with 45%
keeping a record of their incomings and outgoings on a monthly basis, whilst 18%
say they're able to budget by simply checking their bank balance.
Residents who use an online budgeting tool or app save between £50 and £100 each
month, whilst those who keep a record of their incomings and outgoings save an
average of £100 to £200 each month.
► Budget busting
35% of residents in the North West do not budget, with 21% overspending into an
overdraft, using a credit card or taking out a loan each month. A third admit to
overspending by £50 to £100.
For the 15% who do not or only sometimes stick to their budget, common 'budget-busters'
include eating out, buying clothes, socialising with friends and going out to
bars and clubs.
► Other key findings reveal
76% of residents say budgeting is 'easy', whilst the other 24% find it
Women overspend on eating out and buying clothes, whereas men blow their budget
on socialising with friends
75% of residents would happily tell their friends, family and colleagues they're
tightening their belt in a bid to manage their money
Natasha Rachel Smith, Consumer Affairs Editor for TopCashback,
said:- "Being on a budget was once seen as something that would hold
people back from doing what they wanted and enjoying themselves. However our
research shows consumers have become savvy to the idea of setting aside money
each month to increase their spending power for the long term. 57% of Brits now
assign budgets for different categories, which simply set sensible guidelines to
prevent overspending and landing in the red.
Perhaps this is a by product of the recession years, when consumers had to
financially adapt to survive the tough times, and, quite refreshingly, the
habit's remained even though the British economy's improved. When setting budgets, consumers can also look for ways to
reduce their spending in each category by earning cashback and using discount
codes or vouchers. Signing up to TopCashback for instance can save shoppers
around £356 a year in cashback savings alone."
North West tourism on the up, but
companies need to get online!
NORTH West hospitality businesses are
reporting increased profits, but an inability to take online bookings is holding
some businesses back, according to a survey.
The latest MHA Travel and Tourism Survey, conducted in partnership with Merseyside
accountancy firm Moore and Smalley, indicates that 26% of operators in the hotel
and bed and breakfast sector are still unable to take online bookings.
This is despite the fact that 50% of respondents to the annual survey report a
year on year increase in online bookings and the fact that there has been a 16%
increase in the ability to take online bookings direct.
"This growth in direct transactions is good to see, especially as online
booking agents have been increasingly dominating the UK hotel and bed and
breakfast sector. This trend should lead to a greater online presence and more
competitive offerings." said James Treadwell, head of the leisure and tourism
team at Moore and Smalley.
The survey was conducted by MHA, the UK wide association of chartered
accountants and business advisors, of which Moore and Smalley is the North West
The results for 2015 point strongly towards growing business confidence and are
encouraging for the development of the hospitality industry. Indeed, 64% of
respondents reported an increase in profits over the past 12 months,
representing a rising trend in domestic trading conditions, with 59% saying that
they expect to see an increase over the next 12 months.
33% of respondents to the survey still employ workers on zero hours contracts,
only slightly lower than the 37% recorded last year. The amount of zero hour
contract staff who are working more than 21 hours has halved since last year to
James said:- "These findings are concerning and suggest that hospitality
workers on zero hours contracts are suffering through reduced paid hours."
The percentage of companies who have green policies in place has dropped to 65%,
down from 82% last year and over 41% remain unaware that tax reliefs are
available for introduction of such policies.
This decrease in those with green policies suggests increased financial pressure
and yet at the same time there appears to be a distinct lack of awareness of the
tax reliefs available, which suggests that more publiCity is needed to encourage
eco friendly investment.
A wider lack of investment reflects the position in the economy as a whole with
continued difficulties in raising traditional bank finance, although there are
some signs of this position easing.