The third Monday of January has been dubbed ‘Blue Monday’, as it’s supposedly the day where the financial hangover from Christmas festivities begins to hit home.
To help combat the January Blues, Which? has compiled a list of five actions that can help you get your finances in order today.
1. Transfer your credit card debt
January’s credit card bills are hitting doormats across the nation, leaving many with debt they are unable to immediately repay.
If you’re paying interest on credit card debt, it might be worth applying for a 0% balance transfer credit card. These cards charge no interest on a balance transferred from another card for an initial period, meaning you’ll have some breathing space in which to repay your debt gradually.
Make sure to clear this debt before the end of the 0% period though, as the APR on these cards tends to skyrocket once this promotion deal is over.
The Which? Money Compare credit card tables let you search hundreds of cards from providers large and small to choose a great deal based on quality of service as well as cost and benefits.
Which? Money Compare table: 0% balance transfer credit cards – find a great deal
2. Make your savings work harder
Inflation is currently at a record low, meaning it has become easier to find a savings account which negates its effects on your finances. But there is still a huge difference between the best and worst rates offered across the savings market, so it’s worth checking your money is making as much interest as possible.
If you’re over 65, take a look at the Pensioner Bonds released by National Savings & Investments last week. The bonds, which offer market-leading rates to those aged 65 and older, have been tipped to sell out within weeks, as more than £1 billion worth of savings have already been poured in.
Not all savings mechanisms aimed at older generations offer good value, though. Which? recently highlighted the over-50s savings accounts that offer customers desperately low returns.
The Which? Money Compare savings tables let you search hundreds of accounts from providers of all sizes to choose a great deal based on quality of service as well as the returns on offer.
Which? Money Compare table: Savings accounts and Isas – hundreds of accounts compared
3. Switch energy supplier
Energy bills are at their highest for most households at this time of year, which means there is unlikely to be a better time to check you’re on a competitive tariff.
Those who switched gas and electricity provider with Which? Switch between October and December 2014 made annual savings of £245 on average.
Find out more: Which? Switch – compare energy tariffs
4. Reduce your tax bill
The deadline for submitting your 2013/14 online tax return to HMRC is January 31. Our list of 30 completely legal ways could help reduce the amount you owe to the taxman.
Find out more: 30 ways to save tax – learn how to lower your tax bill
5. Check out the Which? ’50 ways’ guides
The video below features shows how you can make an extra £930 a year on average just by following five of the tips featured in these guides.
- How to deal with debt – your options outlined
- 50 ways to make money – our comprehensive money-making guide
- Call the Which? Money Helpline – your financial queries answered
Which Ltd is an Introducer Appointed Representative of Which? Financial Services Ltd, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Which? Mortgage Advisers and Which? Money Compare are trading names of Which? Financial Services Limited.