A lot of us know that we should do it, but much fewer of us actually do it. Keeping a close eye on your spending can often feel like a task easier said than done. A joint study from YouGov and Royal London, a life assurance, investments and pensions company, set out to look at whether keeping track of outgoings affected savings behaviour.

An article by Moneywise today discussed the results of the study. Participants were asked to monitor their spending habits over a 3 month period, either using a smartphone app or the old fashioned pen and paper, and were then asked a series of questions. Of those who completed the 3 months, half felt that using a budgeting method helped monitor their spending, with more than a third revealing that they had a better understanding of income and expenditure. Approximately a quarter of participants admitted they were now more likely to discuss household finances with their partner, family or household.

Changes in behaviour identified by Royal London include shopping at cheaper supermarkets, stopping smoking, cycling rather than taking the bus to work, and purchasing a quality coffee machine instead of buying in large amounts of coffee each week.

We’ve seen an explosion of apps designed to help monitor your spending, including Money Dashboard and Santander‘s own Spendlytics. The apps helpfully categorise your spending so you know how much you’re spending on, say, holidays or eating out. We have to say, we’re big fans of these apps, most of which are free (with premium options available for a fee). We’ll be taking a look at some of these apps so stay tuned! Have an eye on an app that you’d like us to take a look at? Let us know by leaving a reply below.

 

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