It’s your friend, Eddie Teddie. How have you been getting on with saving your pocket money? As we haven’t been able to go out so much this year, I have found it a little easier to save my money.
With the extra money I have been saving, I’m finding it tricky to decide what to spend my money on! I like to buy a little treat like sweets or a magazine once a week, when we go to the supermarket. The problem is, because I have more spare money than normal, I am spending more on little treats every week! In the end, I don’t get much further with putting money aside for the bigger things I am saving for, like a cool new remote-control car.
I told my Mum that I was getting in a pickle because I was finding it hard not to spend all of the extra money I had. She told me about a really good way I could make progress on saving for my car, whilst also enjoying some treats now and again. It’s called Jam Jar Budgeting.
How does jam jar budgeting work?
Mum said jam jar budgeting is something she used to do with her family when she was a little girl. The idea is to have a set of jars, one for each thing you spend your money on. When you get any money, you then split it between the jars, putting as much as you like into each one.
When Mum was little, her family had a jar for money to pay their bills, a jar to save for a holiday and a jar they would fill with spare change and use to buy fish and chips when they had enough.
I thought this was a brilliant idea and I couldn’t wait to have my own set of jars!
Eddie’s budgeting jam jars
I chose to have four jars:
- Small Treats – like a magazine
- Big Treats – like my remote-control car
- Giving – which I will use to buy presents or donate to help others
- Saving – for when I get a bit older.
The next thing I needed to do was decide on my budget. This is the part where you decide how to split your money up into the jars.
Mum told me that the best way to split your money up is to decide which jar is most important to you – although she did say it is sensible to always start with the savings jar!
I get £20 of pocket money every month; this is how I decided to budget my money.
I know it’s important to save for my future (and I have done a lot of spending recently), so I decided to put £7 into my saving jar. As Christmas is coming up, I want to be able to buy some presents for my family, so I put £5 in the giving jar. I put £4 into the jar for my big treats and £4 into my small treats jar. This meant I could still spend £1 a week on a small treat this month, but I was also putting money toward saving for my bigger treats.
The good thing about this method is you can change the amount you put in each jar every month. For example, I won’t put as much money in my giving jar once Christmas is over because I won’t have any present to buy for a little while. I will still save a small amount into the jar so I can buy some extra tins when we go shopping to donate to the food bank.
If I get any extra money from my birthday or for helping with chores, I can add it my big treat jar and hopefully get my remote-control car much quicker!
You can try jam jar budgeting too
I enjoyed working out my budget and seeing the money in the jars. It was much easier to understand what my money was going towards when I could see it.
Why don’t you try giving jam jar budgeting a go with your pocket money? You can decorate each jar with a different colour or picture to show what you are saving for. It’s a lot of fun decorating the jars and it makes you want to fill them up even more!
Let me know if you decide to try jam jar budgeting, I’d love to hear how you get on!