You?ve been working hard and saving regularly. Now you?ve got a tidy sum to spend in 2013. What could you do with it?
Footballer George Best famously said, "I spent 90% of my money on wine, women and fast cars. The rest I wasted."
Now that you?ve got some savings, you can decide whether you want to invest them, spend them wisely, or simply enjoy them!
Once you have some savings, perhaps in an online savings account
, there are many options available to make the most out of them. You can either enjoy and spend them or invest them wisely.
Consider a cash ISA
You may be paying tax on the interest you earn on your savings if you have ordinary or online savings accounts. By taking out a cash ISA
you can benefit from a tax free allowance. The tax treatment on an ISA only applies up to a limit set by HM Treasury each year. You can put in up to a maximum of £5,640 this tax year and you won?t pay tax on the interest. So your savings will grow more. Tax treatment depends on your individual circumstances and may change.
If you own your own home, there's always something that needs doing. You could use your savings to fix those small things that if left unrepaired could cause damage to your home, leading to bigger bills.
Check, and if necessary replace things like guttering and loose roof tiles. You may want to have the outside painted too.
If you don't have loft and cavity wall insulation, it may be worth using some of your savings to get it done. There are generous subsidies for loft and cavity wall insulation. You pay a small percentage of the installation cost and the energy companies pay the rest. In a year or so the insulation could pay for itself.
You could also look at changing some of your older household appliances for newer, more energy-efficient ones. Look for A-rated energy efficient appliances like freezers, dishwashers and washing machines. They use much less water and electricity than older models.
Learn a new skill
You could use your savings to learn new skills for work or enjoyment. You can join evening classes run by local councils that cover subjects ranging from Afrikaans to Zoology. Or you could think about enrolling with the Open University and study with a number of courses to choose from. Why not even learn how to play a musical instrument? Now's the time to buy that saxophone and take some lessons.
Take up an unusual sport
Sadly, there won?t be an Olympics in 2013, but there's never been a better time to find a sport you love. Whether you fancy archery, horse-riding, clay-pigeon shooting, cycling or sailing, sport is a great way to spend your savings
Go on a dream holiday
Perhaps you've always wanted to see Venice, the Highlands of Scotland or relax in the Caribbean. You might have family or friends who have moved abroad. You've saved hard, so research your destination and make 2013 the year you finally get your dream holiday.