Ever since I’ve had children I have made a real effort in trying to organise our finances and make sure we are reasonably secure. This has meant being really genuinely thrifty at times, going without things and sorting out our finances. To this end I can reveal that we are a family which (other than our mortgage) lives debt free. We have no credit cards, we don’t use them, if we can’t pay for something then we go without. I’m not going to say that this is an easy way to live, its incredibly hard at times, but it has worked for us and slowly we are saving a bit for our future. I have a goal in mind with regards to saving, I’m aiming to gather at least three months of our income in savings to fall back on.
Now, just imagine if you put all your hard earned savings in the bank, only to discover that something happened to the bank and you couldn’t get hold of it. That’s where the Financial Services Compensation Scheme comes in. Its free to consumers, completely automatic and backed by Government, protecting against deposits, insurance, investments and mortgage broking. There really is no excuse not to do a bit of saving and protect your future.
The FSCS is launching a brand new campaign today with Fearne Cotton which aims to encourage people to think about protecting their future. They want you to be reassured that your money is protected up to £85,000 per person if your bank, building society or credit union goes bust.
Fearne Cotton is now one of Britain’s most popular and well known television and radio presenters, but that doesn’t mean that she is complacent about money. The FSCS interviewed her about her attitude to money and you can watch the video here:
I really enjoyed hearing what Fearne has to say about money. Its interesting to hear another woman and mothers approach to it all and she has gained loads of credibility with me by saying that she is still uncomfortable spending £300 on a jumper. I think she has a lot to say which will resonate with lots of people and if any readers happen to have teenage children you might find these quotes about what Fearne did with her money once she started earning useful (they are taken from the video):
“From the second I started earning I gave my mum a bit of housekeeping because obviously I was earning but I was still living under her roof so I thought that we came to the conclusion that it was good that I gave her a little bit of housekeeping just to kind of you know, pay my way and have that understanding.”
“I put all of it in a savings account straight away. I wasn’t one of those people and I’m so grateful that I wasn’t but I didn’t just go out and go to the designer shops straight away and buy loads of new clothes, because I never had before so that wasn’t something that felt natural to me to start shopping on Bond Street or whatever. I just didn’t have that in me and I still don’t have it in me – I’m still quite a thrifty person in that way, but I think that’s because of years before my sort of growing up years, I didn’t really have those opportunities.”
One of the things which many children use their savings for is to buy a car. Unfortunately I didn’t manage to save enough when I was younger so not only did I have the fear you get when you first start driving, I also had the worry that I might damage my parents car! So I’m quite jealous hearing all about when Fearne met Ethel the car:
“It was all in a savings account until I kind of thought right, what am I aiming for here and approaching my 17th birthday it was all about a car and a red Fiat Punto at that – that was my dream.”
“Having a car was the ultimate freedom. I just remember the first time I got behind the wheel – I was in my own car, listening to music – life was good. It was a really empowering moment.”
As I’ve said previously, for us, savings are becoming increasingly important and I’m trying really hard to make sure that my children save and have an understanding of the value of money. I don’t think I could have summed it all up better than Fearne:
“I always try to have savings in the bank and I always try and just have that element of comfort. Now also, because I’m a Mum, its not about me saving up for silly things, its about really sort of creating some stability, comfort for my family, for my kid, for my step kids, and just feeling really comfortable and safe with savings.”
“It’s really nice to know as well that now I am a mum and I’ve got a kid and stepkids that I can put money away in an FSCS protected account and have that safety and security there – whether it’s me saving for my first flat back in the day or me now just creating those stable foundations for a family – it’s protected.”