Recent research from the Building Societies Association has found that over a third of Britons keep the majority of their savings in their current accounts. While some of these do pay a nominal level of interest on the money held in them, there are greater earnings to be made.

In fact, helping us maximise our money is the whole purpose of the UK Savings Week held between 18 and 24 September this year.

The week is a collaboration between a number of leading building societies, credit unions, consumer groups and debt charities. As the UK’s dedicated financial review website (including reviews for savings accounts), we’re pleased to also be a partner for UK Savings Week.

Its aims are to emphasise the importance and advantages of saving. As well as help people get in the habit of looking for the best places to put their money.

The facts, and the figures

In June 2023, the Building Societies Association did some research* to learn more about the UK’s savings habits. Some of the results were quite startling:

  • 15% of respondents said they’ve no savings at all
  • 9% said they hadn’t reviewed their savings options for a year or more
  • 52% said they had £12,000 or less in savings

However, there were also many signs of optimism among the interviewees with:

  • 36% of interviewees confident they could start saving regularly
  • 79% of existing savers feeling they could easily save an extra £120 a year with 51% believing that they could manage an extra £600 and 36% sure they could save £1,200 more a year

Establishing the saving habit

With more providers offering new products at increasingly attractive rates it’s just a question of encouraging the habit of regular and frequent saving.

But everything needs a framework if it’s really going to work. That’s why there’s the UK Savings Week Challenge. This is a three-step process designed to embed the savings habit in anyone who wants to take it on.

Step one: set a goal

The first stage is to establish a goal. This is the target amount that you want to put aside as savings each month. It’s important to make this an achievable amount and one that won’t lead to you going short.

Step two: make saving automatic

Even with the best intentions, it’s easy to let things slip after a month or two so payments into your chosen savings accounts are missed. To avoid this, set up a standing order to transfer a fixed amount each month – and then you can just forget about it.

Step three: reward yourself

Every few months take a look at how the savings are mounting up. Then treat yourself to a small indulgence. This can be a reward for your discipline – and the fact that you’re building up a tidy little nest-egg in the process. It’s going to make saving all the sweeter for you.

Plus, anyone who signs up for the challenge will also be rewarded with exclusive monthly online content from UK Savings Week Ambassadors including Olympic gold medal gymnast Max Whitlock, and Great British Bake Off star, Benjamina Ebuehi.

So there really has never been a better time to start saving.

Not sure what savings account is best for you?

Want to start saving but not sure what savings account would be best for you? From the different types of accounts available, to who provides them, there’s a huge range of options to choose from.

Feeling a little overwhelmed? Look no further – we’ve put together a quiz to help you pick the best type of savings account for your circumstances. Simply follow the questions through to the end to reveal a list of products that should meet your requirements. Remember, this is only a guide, and there are exceptions to every rule, but we hope you’ll find it a helpful starting point.

*Research conducted by Opinium on behalf of Building Societies Association on 21 June 2023 and between 23 – 27 June 2023 with a nationally represented sample of 2,000 UK Adults