Family finance tips for every budget

Charlotte Beugge is skinted
Jane Wallace is minted

s logo

Food waste: my guilty secret

Food waste: my guilty secretThrowing away edible food is bad news. Sustainability charity Wrap says UK households throw away about 7.3 million tonnes of food a year. I’m ashamed to say quite a bit of that comes from our house. A big part of the problem is there are only two of us (bar the cats) and we have vastly different tas...

#Pensions: feel the fear and do it anyway

#Pensions: feel the fear and do it anywayUntil I hit my forties, I didn’t take pensions seriously. When I was young there was an element of resentment about my employer deducting my contributions every month – I could think of better uses for the money then. Now I’m just relieved that I was made to contribute, even though I’m in a closed d...

#MothersDay: when cash is better than chocolates or flowers

#MothersDay: when cash is better than chocolates or flowersSo what will you get on Sunday? Breakfast in bed? Chocolates? Flowers? I’m not expecting anything and that’s fine: we never did Mother’s Day when I was a child so I’ve not come to expect it and cynically, think it’s another Hallmark Holiday – one promoted by the greetings card industries. But if you...

Any #birthday #party ideas for the child who has outgrown them?

Any #birthday #party ideas for the child who has outgrown them?Marking junior’s birthday used to be fairly easy. In the past I’ve shelled out for the usual laser quest/Trampolining/football skills/circus games parties. All have been pretty expensive – around £200 for the Trampolining or laser quest, I think. But now the game’s changed. Junior is 12 on Friday an...

Life expectancy falls: so why is state #pension age increasing?

Life expectancy falls: so why is state #pension age increasing?Here’s a cheery fact: apparently, we are not all living longer. Those fun-loving guys at the Continuous Mortality Institute - part of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries – say that life expectancy improvements between 2011 and 2017 were “significantly lower” than any other recent six year period....

m lower case logo

Got no money? You can still use your Isa allowance

Got no money? You can still use your Isa allowanceVirgin sent me a letter last week to check if I was still alive. Bless! They didn’t quite say it like that, of course. It was more along the lines of: ‘We’re worried your details aren’t correct’. I knew what they really meant though. Virgin was right to be concerned. There had been no activity on my...

#UniversityCosts: what your kids need you to know

#UniversityCosts: what your kids need you to knowSome Year 12 pupils (or Lower Sixth formers) are already thinking about open days at university and perhaps preparing their personal statement for applications. Of course, all mums would want their kids to have the chance of higher education. But are they thinking about their child graduating with £...

Hurry! Deadline for kids’ #saving is approaching fast

Hurry! Deadline for kids’ #saving is approaching fastIt’s time to pass the hat around relatives and godparents to top up (or start) a Junior Isa for your kids as the end of the tax year looms. This year you can put away up to £4,128 in a Junior Isa or Jisa. This is a saving scheme which shelters the returns on the cash from tax. But you must do it by ...

How I managed finally to #payoffChristmas

How I managed finally to #payoffChristmasIt’s been a long old slog – quite the marathon – but at last I have repaid my massive overspend from Christmas: a whopping £1,000. Fortunately this was savings money I had borrowed from myself so I didn’t have to pay any credit card interest. That doesn’t mean it’s free cash. It means I’ve been with...

What to do with #oldtenners

What to do with #oldtennersToday is the last day that paper £10 notes are legal tender. If you ever needed an excuse to spend money, this is a good one: use up those Darwin tenners today because no-one will be accepting them from tomorrow. But don’t worry if you do find some down the back of the sofa after the deadline has pa...


HELLO from two journalists in very different circumstances! One of us is better off than the other but that doesn't stop us being good friends with a shared interest in getting the most for our money.

As we’ve both worked for a long time writing about personal finance, we've got a bit of a head start through the maze of banking, saving, mortgages, pensions and investment.

But not everyone is so lucky. We've met a lot of mums over the years who get overwhelmed by money matters, including the brain surgeons and rocket scientists. And no wonder – there’s really too much information out there and even the idiot’s guides are complicated.

We thought we could help by sharing any solutions we find for our own money challenges and passing on any tips and brilliant deals that we discover.

Please read our blogs to see how we cope (not always successfully!) with everyday spending and saving and sign up to our newsletter to get a weekly round-up of everything you need to know from new products to the best bargains. You can also ask a question about money in our forum or leave your own insights and reviews for our community. Hopefully SMM can give you a steer whatever side of the tracks you’re on!

Latest guides

Your first fund: where to invest?

Spring 2018 suggestions for beginner investors

Buy to let: a guide to being a landlord

Basic steps to making money out of bricks and mortar

Which fund should I add to my portfolio this year?

Spring 2018 suggestions for advanced Isa investors

Sky is not the limit

Ten steps to trouble-free TV

Does loyalty pay?

How you can earn while shopping

Educating the next generation about personal finance

Ten ideas for teaching your kids about money

Pet insurance: the basics

How to cover man’s best friend (and other creatures)

Are premium bonds worth a punt?

All you need to know about these government prizes

Ten easy ways to save money shopping

Painfree purchasing using cashback websites

The Lifetime Isa: the basics

Government help when you save for a property or pension with a Lisa

Car rental abroad

Ten essentials to avoid being ripped off

Ten tips for choosing the best student bank account

See beyond the freebies to get the top deal

How to invest in funds

Tips for choosing the right investment for you

How to be safe online

Ten tips you MUST read to protect yourself

How to object to planning applications

Ten steps to fighting the developers on your doorstep

Filling in your tax return

Ten tips for paying tax

SMM newsletter

SMM newsletter

We read the finance pages so you don’t have to! Click here to get our weekly round-up of news and tips.
SMM forums

SMM forums

Got a money worry or a cash crisis? Get your answer by asking a question in our forum. Or leave a top tip or review for other SMMs.
2017 SHOMO Awards

2017 SHOMO Awards

Winner of Best Personal Finance Blog and runner up in Best New Blog category. We are proud to be members of UK Money Bloggers.

As seen in:

The Sun
Family Grapevine
Daily Mirror
The Mail On Sunday
BBC One New Logo 2016 V2 Black
2000px Daily Telegraph.svg