Family finance tips for every budget

Charlotte Beugge is skinted
Jane Wallace is minted

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Body blow for Jisas as Nationwide calls time on its account for new savers

Body blow for Jisas as Nationwide calls time on its account for new saversBritain’s biggest building society Nationwide has pulled its Junior Isa (Jisa) from sale with immediate effect: a stunning snub to the government’s saving scheme for children. Nationwide says it’s dumped the Jisa in favour of an ordinary kid’s savings accounts after parents said they wanted to keep ...

Ten things to put on your Christmas countdown list

Ten things to put on your Christmas countdown listThe local supermarket already has several shelves of Christmas chocolates. Who on earth would buy them now? I know chocolate lasts for ages – but there is little chance of that in this house without them being ‘tested’. However there are ways of getting ahead for Christmas. Here’s my skinted top 10....

Why you MUST put pensions first when divorcing

Why you MUST put pensions first when divorcingDivorce is undoubtedly painful, particularly if it becomes combative. So it is good news that the government is looking at introducing no fault divorces which should mean that splitting up becomes more civilised. So, fingers crossed that this bit of legislation goes through. I’ve never been divorced...

Can you save £2,600 a year by remortgaging?

Can you save £2,600 a year by remortgaging?If you’ve got a mortgage, then it can be all too easy simply to make the monthly repayments and assume you are fine. After all, interest rates are low – so why would you bother to go to the hassle of switching deals? Actually, there are more compelling reasons than ever for sorting out your mortgage...

Five ways YOU can be safe from online fraud

Five ways YOU can be safe from online fraudHere’s a sobering thought for you. Apparently one in four Britons have been defrauded when shopping online losing typically £608.The new Shieldpay Fraud Tracker also found that 8% of online shoppers who have been victims of fraud were defrauded more than once. Women, however, are either more careful...

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SMM REVIEW: should you sign up to the Hargreaves Lansdown savings hub?

SMM REVIEW: should you sign up to the Hargreaves Lansdown savings hub?Finally a useful financial product. Hargreaves Lansdown has come up with an online cash savings hub called Active Savings. You simply put your money in the hub and then give instructions online to feed it into your choice of savings accounts offered by the hub’s partner banks. The advantage of being...

Can you afford to send your kids to private school?

Can you afford to send your kids to private school?School open days are now in full swing as the new academic year gets underway. Of course, there are plenty of brilliant state schools where your child would thrive. But could you afford to educate them privately? At first sight, the answer is no. According to the Independent Schools Council, the ave...

Specsavers v VisonDirect: which is cheaper for contact lenses?

Specsavers v VisonDirect: which is cheaper for contact lenses?Goggle-eyed from trying to find the cheapest contact lenses? Me too. Having seen a lot of promotions recently on trains and planes for websites with cut-price offers, I decided to see if I could get a better deal than my local Specsavers. Unfortunately I have astigmatism which means the lenses I nee...

Six ways you can save on mobile phone bills

Six ways you can save on mobile phone billsApple is set to launch a new iPhone (or maybe two) tomorrow but I won’t be upgrading. My iPhone 7, which was cutting-edge when I got it just two years ago, is still going strong. So I’ve been looking at SIM-only deals (where you pay just for calls and data, not the handset) instead and I’ve managed ...

Is your child due a windfall?

Is your child due a windfall?If your child turns 16 from 1 September this year, it’s likely they could be quids in as the first child trust funds (CTFs) mature. CTFs were a government initiative to encourage long-term saving. Children born between 1 September 2002 and 1 January 2011 were given vouchers worth between £50 and £1,...


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

How to find and transfer a child trust fund (CTF)

Switch your CTF into a Junior Isa in 10 easy steps

Video - Charlotte and Jane talk about saving for kids

Get the lowdown on tax-perk saving for kids in just five minutes!

Video - Charlotte and Jane talk about pensions

All you need to know about pensions in three minutes!

Remortgaging: how to save on home loans

Get the best deal for the roof over your head

What is an investment trust?

An easy explanation of these exciting investment companies

Affordable opera tickets

How to get a discount Don Giovanni

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

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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.

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