Tag Archives: UK

So, who’s ‘in the black’? 2014 1st Quarter results just in…

 Total “SMARTER Finances” Survey Responses – 1st Quarter (Mar ’14)

Juan Carlos Patrick, keynote speaker at the SEC Expo on 12 January 2014 challenged delegates to be fishermen rather than keepers of the aquarium.  

We also started to do the quarterly report on the views UK Seventh-day Adventist church members have about finances and money.  

Here is the quarterly update on responses received so far!

What do you think the result show? Please share your views and comment!

2014 1st Quarter Survey results

“SMARTER FINANCES” – WHO’s REPRESENTED?

The results now include the Stevenage SDA Church responses (5 April 2014)

A big ‘Thank You’ to all the churches that have taken part so far.  Results are still coming in so don’t stop commenting and responding!

 

1. Balham 11. London Ghana
2. Bracknell 12. Hanwell
3. Basingstoke* 13. Holloway
4. Central London 14. Ipswich
5. Cheltenham 15. Lewisham
6. Clacton 16. Norbury
7. Clapton 17. Northolt
8. Edmonton Central 18. Plaistow
9. Edmonton (Cuckoo Hall Lane) 19. Reading Central
10. Elephant & Castle 20. Stevenage

* –   also won the 2014 SEC Expo £5 Challenge!!

If you haven’t yet see our  ‘7 Days’ tips for starting off the New Year –  click on any of the  links below to recap on the day’s messages:

Day 1 – the one about developing your Spending Plan
Day 2 – the one about Reducing your Debts
Day 3 – the one about Increasing your Savings
Day 4 – the one about gaining more Financial Knowledge
Day 5 – the one about checking your Credit Report/ Rating
Day 6 – the one about having ‘the Talk’ about Finances
Day 7 – the one about making adjustments for life’s ‘big changes’

From April 2014 all UK Churches are invited to host a FREE  “SMARTER Finance” Seminars to get support for you on your financial journey – These are  bible-based seminars and are delivered in your local church. As part of the Stewardship of our knowledge, member’s have supported other church groups by running these seminars annually since 2004.

Get £1,000 in one year: Jan update now in!

Image

We’ve updated the blog about an easy way to save £1,000 in one year….

Remember, if you haven’t started this challenge yet, it’s never too late – start now!

Here’s how some of us got on in January:

HoneyBea – Decided to do this as a monthly amount to match the timing of income – thanks for updating the helpful chart  – it suggests how much you can put aside monthly now!  So I’ve done the January amount – it’s only £15 so that was easy.  Am a bit worried about how I will keep my hands of the larger amounts suggested to save over later months so I might put a bit more aside now… this is exciting!!!!

Copperz – £125  : I’m still going with the large lumps every month.  I’ll probably save  £100 each month until November – this money is going to be presents for the family and a holiday next year. I don’t think I need to do thisby standing order – I do mobile banking … and I never forget things like this.

Kate – £60 so far: I’m retired but I want to do this challenge and so I’m saving £20 each week

Anonymous Pete – I still think this savings method is fundamentally flawed and should be adjusted…. I haven’t saved anything yet – I’m looking at different options on savings that are out there

Anonymous 2 – I saved some money but the kids need shoes and I’ve bought a few things for the house and then I loaned some to a friend at work – hopefully I’ll get it back next month…

How would you do this challenge?  

The best comment each month gets a free gift*!

*Free gift is only available to persons over age 18. Must be living in the UK. Must be a member of a Seventh-Day Adventist church within the British Union Conference. Gift is not transferable. New competition opens each month and closes at midnight on the last day of the month British Standard Time

JACKPOT!

Anyone got Ideas about what they would do if they won £million in 2014?

thesubtlelessons

jackpot

What would you do if you won a MILLION dollars today?

Would the money still be around tomorrow, a week from now, a year from now, or even 5 years on? Most (A Google search suggests 50-70%) lottery winners remain broke or become worse off.

The FINANCIAL education of a person plays a BIG role here. Knowing how to EARN money is just a small portion of the education, learning to PRESERVE and EXPAND your wealth is the KEY.

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You couldn’t make this up…!

“Give a man a fish, and you have fed him once. Teach him how to fish and HE IS FED for a lifetime.”

Guest blogger takes a look back at the 2014 SEC Expo SMARTER Finances session

“I need £600….”

Delegate: I need £600…
Presenter: OK…  What’s the money for?
Delegate: It’s for my to use for my church department. I want to go to a conference in Geneva this year and need this amount..
Presenter: Have you asked for a grant from your church or from the SEC Department that helps local church activities? 
Delegate: No, not at all.  I know all that but I’ve not done it, it’s such work!
 Presenter: Do you want me to help you find ways of raising the money?
Delegate: No,   I was in your session and just thought that since you know about money you must have some going spare  – so you should give me  – so I’m asking can you give me the £600…

…Banks may have branches… but money doesn’t grow on trees!

What would YOU do?

We’ll each save £1,000 in one year: updates!

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You may have seen the blog about an easy way to save £1,000 in one year….

So, here’s how some of us are getting on:

HoneyBea – Only £6 so far – but it has been weekly: I’m using an account to do the deposits using an app on my mobile phone each Friday… but I forgot this week! I’m going to start a Standing Order, that way it will just happen and I don’t have to think about it from now on…

Copperz – £125  : I decided to do it in large lumps every month.  I’ll probably save  £100 each month until November – this money is going to be presents for the family and a holiday next year.

Kate – £40 so far: I’m retired but I want to do this challenge and so I’m saving £20 each week

Anonymous Pete – I think this savings method is fundamentally flawed and should be adjusted….

Anonymous 1 – Save?? I need some money! Is there any way you could give me £600??

Who’s response do you think is the best/ the worst? Why?  Please share your comments.  

The best comment gets a free gift*!

*Free gift is only available to persons over age 18. Must be living in the UK. Must be a member of an SDA church within the British Union Conference. Gift is not transferable.

Your Seven Day Plan to Achieve that New Year’s Resolution (Day 7)

Yay! It’s Day 7 !

Welcome to the last of the blogs in this series! Yes, you made it! –  well done for going through this week of tips  – you kept in mind: I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. Phil 3:14 (NKJV)

(We will resume our regular weekly posts this week)

By completing this seven day series of activities, one day at a time, you are already that many steps closer towards your financial goals for 2014. And as you continue to progress you become one of the group of 8% in the population that achieve New Year’s Resolutions and go on to master their goals!

Before we look at the tip today, can you honestly answer ‘YES’ to these questions?

QuestionMarkATP

Question 1: Have you read the tips from the past six days?  If not take a moment to read those you have skipped – just click the link for the Day:

Day 1 – the one about developing your Spending Plan
Day 2 – the one about Reducing your Debts
Day 3 – the one about Increasing your Savings
Day 4 – the one about gaining more Financial Knowledge
Day 5 – the one about checking your Credit Report/ Rating
Day 6 – the one about having the talk about Finances

Question 2: Did you set the date for the meeting, or better still, have the meeting and go through the main areas you agreed to cover?  You still have a few hours today to make this happen if you haven’t yet done so…but make sure you take action in the next 24 hours!

Question 3: As part of your morning devotional study and reflections today, did you thank God for the opportunities being brought your way, and commit  to  achieving the activities planned for this day to move closer toward your goals? Remember: But let him ask in faith, never wavering; for he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind. James 1:6 (NKJV)

So, if you’ve not yet done so, just pause for a moment now to do this… and then read through your list of activities you prepared at the start of the week.  Tick off all the actions you completed so far and congratulate yourself for making good on those activites.

Then, refresh your mind about the rest of the activities you will need to do this week to make your goals become a reality and commit to making them happen.

OK, now let’s move on to the last tip!

Tip No 7: ADJUST FOR 2014’s planned ‘BIG CHANGES’

You may have made some non-financial goals for 2014.  Goals that will result in major life changes.

Some may be positive changes (eg starting a new career, getting married, going to university, starting or expanding your family, buying your first home or investing in another business property) others not so much (eg getting a divorce, coping with funeral costs and the loss of income as a result of recent bereavement of main breadwinner, increased expenses due to loss of a primary caregiver).  Or you may be thinking about the changes you need to make for your retirement.

Whatever it is, these goals will all need you to take another look at your financial plans.

If this is your first time to look at things in total, you may want to categorise your goals into seven Stewardship Life Categories:

  1. Spiritual Development goals
  2. Health & Wellbeing/ Mindset goals
  3. Career /Business Goals
  4. Educational & Personal Development goals
  5. Wealth & Financial goals (this blog will help you with that one!)
  6. Relationships /Romance goals
  7. Community Service & Giving goals

First, write down the priority goals in each of the seven life categories :  Remember, just like your financial goals, these should also be SMARTER goals (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time bound, Ethical and Responsible) or it may be best to reassess if they fit in with the rest of your life mastery plans.

Next, identify what financial resources you will need to achieve each of these goals, and identify where you can reallocate funds in your Spending Plan to meet the needs of your short term goals.

A good example was shared by a friend recently:

“I had a short term goal to lose the weight I’ve gained from the festive season.  So I just decided I needed to reallocate the money for a couple of evening’s entertainment or eating out this month and bought a good pair of trainers. 

I also found a free app on my mobile phone that counts my steps and helps me track what I eat and my water intake. 

I’ve set it to a goal of 10,000 steps per day and I can track my progress. This may seem like such a small change to my Spending Plan but it makes a big difference – I have what I need to achieve my short term Health & Wellbeing Goal!”

If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed by all this planning you need to do, don’t panic.

Take one short term goals from each of your life goal categories.

Write out everything you will need to do or resources you will need to make this goal a reality and then identify the items that may need you to spend.

You may find the cost is not as much as you estimate or you can get the resources for free – do some investigating to see what is available before you run out and spend money.

Death & Taxes…

Next, look at the insurance cover you have, how your retirement fund is doing, your contributions into your employer’s pension or your own private pension.

It is also a great time for you to think about the longer term and plans for your estate which includes property and any other assets, by making a Will.  The saying ‘Nothing is certain but death and taxes‘ is just as true today and it is wise to regularly assess how you plan for these.

So, there you have it.  The last tip to help you move closer towards your financial goals this year!

Attend one of the FREE Access the Power (ATP)  “SMARTER Finance” Seminars to continue to support you on your financial journey – These are all bible-based seminars and are delivered in your local church. As part of the Stewardship of our knowledge, member’s have supported other church groups by running these seminars annually since 2004.

The first quarter, from January to March, is used for workshops and practical support sessions for members new to the programmes. From April to December we then run the weekend, or one-day church based seminars.

A number of local church groups in England already this session for basic financial literacy as a Stewardship Day whilst others use the weekend workshops or one-day seminar services for both the church and local community outreach.  If your church has never participated or held one of these sessions, show this blog to your Stewardship Co-ordinator and they can arrange a session for your church group within your Stewardship Day programme this year.

“SMARTER Finance”  sessions are open to all participating church members in any Seventh-day Adventist church group in the UK.   For more information or to arrange a programme at your local church click here – (this will take you to the feedback form on this blog)

Hopefully the information covered so far has been is useful – but please suggest any other areas you would like to see more about and we’ll post a blog about it.

As always, share how you are getting on with these, any questions or comments you have.  Maybe you think there are some tips we’ve missed – please let us know.

Until then….onwards and upwards!

Your Seven Day Plan to Achieve that New Year’s Resolution (Day 6)

Welcome back to the penultimate of this series of blogs!

We’ve nearly at the end –  so well done for not giving up! Remember: Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us. Hebrews 12:1 (NKJV)

(We will resume our regular weekly posts in a two days after this series of blogs ends, but for now we are focussing on tips to help our 2014 financial goals)

By completing this seven day series of activities, one day at a time, you are already that many steps closer towards your financial goals for 2014. And as you continue to progress you become one of the group of 8% in the population that achieve New Year’s Resolutions and go on to master their goals!

Before we look at the tip today, can you honestly answer ‘YES’ to these questions?

QuestionMarkATP

Question 1: Did you read the earlier Days?  If not take a moment to read those you have skipped – just click the link for the Day:

Day 1 – the one about developing your Spending Plan
Day 2 – the one about Reducing your Debts
Day 3 – the one about Increasing your Savings
Day 4 – the one about gaining more Financial Knowledge
Day 5 – the one about checking your Credit Report/ Rating

Question 2: Did you order or at least look online at the companies that can supply your credit report?  Making this part of your financial knowledge this year will help your understanding.  You still have a few hours today to make this happen if you haven’t yet done so…but make sure you take action in the next 24 hours!

Question 3: As part of your morning devotional study and reflections today, did you thank God for the opportunities being brought your way, and commit  to  achieving the activities planned for this day to move closer toward your goals? Remember: But let him ask in faith, never wavering; for he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind. James 1:6 (NKJV)

So, if you’ve not yet done so, just pause for a moment now to do this… and then read again to refresh your mind about at least three activities you will do this week to move your goals closer to become a reality.

OK, now let’s move on to the tip for Day 6!

Tip No 6: Make SURE EVERYONE is  ‘on board’ 

For you to make good financial progress it is important that everyone able to affect your progress is aware of, understands, and can commit to what it will take to make your goals a reality.

But achieving  your financial goals is well nigh impossible if you are battling less positive financial behaviour within your own family or circle of friends.  When you face resistance you have a tug-of-war as your family or friends fear they may lose out as a result of your financial decisions. And they may inadvertently do things that end up working against you.

First, be clear about why you are doing this:  Remember, your goals should be SMARTER (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time bound, Ethical and Responsible) or it may be that the resistance you face is quite valid!

If this is your first time you may want to first share with your family the information in Days 1 – 5 so they understand how this fits into your goal.

Next, make a commitment to having the chat, pick a good time and stick to the time – if you said it will be for an hour, keep your promise.  If you need to talk further or if you need to gather financial information together, agree and set aside space for another time – don’t drag out this first meeting.

Decide and agree on exactly what it is you would like to achieve from the discussion and work towards these points in the meeting.

OK, so you faced a few snags?

Try to identify what the root causes are for any resistance you are facing. Some problems you might encounter may include:

We’ve no time to have this sort of chat.. everyone is really busy  – this is not an excuse to hold on to.  People who became billionaires or paupers all had the same number of hours in the day – they just used them differently. Choosing how you want to use your time in these early days of your financial journey should be  important enough for you to put aside the time to make this happen.

I find it impossible to get through to him/ her about this –  It is possible that you are dealing with an ‘impossible person’ and that no matter what you try, it is difficult to talk about money with them.  See our blog about handling this type or detracting influence.

Talking about money causes a fight – I’d rather avoid this…With most of the arguments and causes for divorce caused by money (this finding is also supported by our poll!) this is not unique to your relationship.  Making your financial goals a joint project that includes the whole family is one way to engage everyone on the same path.

We don’t share, we keep our money details separate… this can result one day getting a nasty surprise if either of you has no control over your spending or rapidly escalating debts.  It is always best to get any of those sorts of hidden problems out in the open sooner rather than later so that you can sort them out early – together.

If you find yourself feeling under attack, don’t go on the defensive and avoid coming off as negative: Statements that start with “You always…” or “You never…” are put downs and not the best basis to try to build consensus for moving your financial goals forward!

Attend one of the FREE Access the Power (ATP)  “SMARTER Finance” Seminars to continue to support you on your financial journey – These are all bible-based seminars and are delivered in your local church. As part of the Stewardship of our knowledge, member’s have supported other church groups by running these seminars annually since 2004.

The first quarter, from January to March, is used for workshops and practical support sessions for members new to the programmes. From April to December we then run the weekend, or one-day church based seminars.

A number of local church groups in England already this session for basic financial literacy as a Stewardship Day whilst others use the weekend workshops or one-day seminar services for both the church and local community outreach.  If your church has never participated or held one of these sessions, show this blog to your Stewardship Co-ordinator and they can arrange a session for your church group within your Stewardship Day programme this year.

“SMARTER Finance”  sessions are open to all participating church members in any Seventh-day Adventist church group in the UK.   For more information or to arrange a programme at your local church click here – (this will take you to the feedback form on this blog)

Hopefully the information covered so far has been is useful – but please suggest any other areas you would like to see more about and we’ll post a blog about it.

Tomorrow, we will look at the final tip to help you with your financial goals.  As always, share how you are getting on with these, any questions or comments you have.

Until then….onwards and upwards!

Your Seven Day Plan to Achieve that New Year’s Resolution (Day 5)

Welcome back to another step forward on this seven day plan!

Today as a good start to the week, remind yourself of this promise: For it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill His good purpose. Phil 2:12 (NIV)

(We will resume our regular weekly posts in a few days after this series of blogs completes on day 7 , but for now we are focussing on tips to help our 2014 financial goals)

By now you know that only 8% of the population actually end up achieving their New Year’s Resolutions and by continuing today, you have committed to be one of that group that master their life goals!

You also know from ATP’s 2013 survey completed for UK Seventh-day Adventist believers UK, scores of respondent actually admitted they either did not practical tools to enable them to achieve many of their financial goals. No surprise there as most people whether in the Britain or elsewhere, all struggle with the same challenges.  So, by completing these seven day’s tips, one day at a time, you will have some tools to help progress your financial goals for 2014.

Before we look at the tip today, can you honestly answer ‘YES’ to these questions?

QuestionMarkATP

Question 1: Did you read the earlier Days?  If not take a moment to catch up on Day 1 here , find Day 2 herereview Day 3 here and check out Day 4 here.

Question 2: Did you list out at least one area of financial knowledge you would like to improve this year and identify where you can access this information?  You still have another 24 hours to make this happen if you haven’t yet done so…but make sure you take action within the next day!

Question 3: As part of your morning devotional study and reflections today, did you recommit your plans to God, asking for focus, guidance and clarity of purpose to help you achieve your goals and plans for this day, week and year  Remember: This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. 1 John 5:14.

So, if you’ve not yet done so, just pause for a moment now to do this… and then quickly write down or review at least three of the activities you will do this week to move your goals closer to become a reality.

OK, now let’s move on to the tip for Day 5!

Tip No 5: REVIEW (or get hold of your first) Credit Report

Remember, furthering your knowledge is an essential pillar to help you achieve your goals in finance, or in fact, any other area in personal development.  Knowledge of what is on record about your credit information is beneficial so don’t put this one off!

Your credit report is an up to date record of your credit history but is a ‘snapshot’ at the time it is requested and things can change.  For good financial housekeeping make it part of your activities to check your credit record regularly, at least once a year.

First, request a copy of your credit report: You have a statutory right to obtain a full copy of your credit report from any credit reference agency such as Experian , Callcredit or Equifax .

There is a statutory fee of £2 to receive your report either online or hardcopy in the post although there are offers that give you access to your credit file for free if you sign up with the company.  As different credit agancies may have different information on file if this is your first time doing this you may want to request the file from all three of the credit reference agencies.

For more information on UK resources and information on credit reports and credit reference agencies, look out for future blogs as these will are posted and updated over the year.

OK, so you have your credit report, now what ?

Next  – and do this within the next 48 hours –  identify any information you find worrying and check your records to see if your file may need to be corrected.  The instances of people being subjected to credit fraud are increasing, so learning how to master some simple anti-fraud activities will also help in your financial goals.

More information on Protecting your reputation and identity later…

If you have a specific creditworthiness issues, don’t delay in addressing this –  Be sure to research how to address areas of poor credit or reach out to a friend with good knowledge to help you or financial advisor if this area of your finances needs serious sorting.

But remember, if you are not clear about what you need advice for you will be throwing away good money on professional services.  Know exactly what it is you would like to achieve before you go spending on advisors.

Attend one of the FREE Access the Power (ATP)  “SMARTER Finance” Seminars that deal with Credit, Loans and Debts – These are all bible-based seminars and are delivered in your local church. As part of the Stewardship of our knowledge, member’s have supported other church groups by running these seminars annually since 2004.  Most seminars are run from April – December.  The first quarter of the year is used for workshops and practical support sessions for members new to the programmes.

If your church has never participated or held one of these sessions, show this blog to your Stewardship Co-ordinator and ask him/ her to arrange a session for your church group within your Stewardship Day programme this year.

“SMARTER Finance”  sessions are open to all participating church members in any Seventh-day Adventist church group in the UK.  A number of local church groups in England already this session for basic financial literacy as a Stewardship Day whilst others use the weekend workshops or one-day seminar services for both the church and local community outreach.

For more information or to arrange a programme at your local church click here – (this will take you to the feedback form on this blog)

Knowledge is nothing without Wisdom…

The book of Proverbs is a fantastic way for you to start gaining some of the basic understanding of how successful people approach managing credit, business, wealth and finances. One chapter a day and you have covered the whole book in a month!  It’s never too late to start now.

For ladies in the UK, see our blogs on Proverbs 31 for secrets on successful living , business and financial success.  And see the Sorority created just for you, by women just like you PI TAU OMICRON (Π Τ Ο).

For ΠΤΟ sisterhood eligibility criteria click here.

Hopefully this information is useful – please suggest an area you would like to see more about and we’ll post a blog about it.

Tomorrow, we will look at another tip to help you in your financial goals.  As always, share how you are getting on with these, any questions or comments you have.

See you again tomorrow….onwards and upwards!

Your Seven Day Plan to Achieve that New Year’s Resolution (Day 4)

Well done on continuing to move forward on this seven day plan!

You are doing such a good job.  Remind yourself of this promise as you continue to move forward, leaving your past behind:  I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me Philippians 4:13 (NKJV)

(We will resume our regular weekly posts after the first seven days of 2014, where we are focussing on tips to help succeed in financial goals this year)

As we’ve noted earlier this week, only 8% of the population actually end up achieving their New Year’s Resolutions and we want to be in that group of successful winners!  Also, from the hundreds of responses to the ATP’s 2013 survey of church members in the UK, we met scores of members who admitted they either did not practical tools to enable them to achieve many of their financial goals.

There’s a simple solution for this; continuing to keep up with and revisit these seven days of tips and hints, one tip at a time, will help you progress your financial goals for 2014.

Before we go through Day 4, can you honestly answer ‘YES’ to these questions?

 

QuestionMarkATP

Question 1: Did you read the earlier blogs for Days 1, 2 and 3?  If not, you can catch up on Day 1 here , find Day 2 here and review Day 3 here.

Question 2: Did you add an amount towards your savings goal/s into your Monthly Spending Plan? If not, then take some time to complete that task before moving on to today’s tip.

Question 3: As part of your morning devotional study and reflections, did you recommit your plans to God, asking for focus, guidance and clarity of purpose to help you achieve your goals and plans for this day, week and year?

Remember: Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it. John 14:13-14.  So, just pause for a moment now to do so… and share your vision of better financial stewardship today with your fellow church members.

OK, now let’s see today’s tip!

Tip No 4: Increase  (or start to acquire!) More Knowledge to Master Your Finances

Furthering your knowledge is an essential pillar to help you achieve your goals in finance, or in fact, any other area in personal development.

Nowadays, with so many resources available, there is no excuse for not getting the knowledge you need.  With the Internet accessible at home, on your smartphone, at school and at work  information is now (literally) 24/7 at your fingertips.

There are a number of good websites, free online courses, TV programmes, and educational books available that offer practical insights into personal financial mastery, money, finance and its ever-growing areas.  For a list of the UK resources look out for future blogs as these will are posted and updated over the year.

First start off by making a list of the areas in your financial understanding that you would like to learn more about – these will also need to be relevant to the financial goals you have set.

Focus on something you are familiar with and would like to know more aboutMany people want to dive into shares, bonds and investing in the stockmarket,  options trading, mutual funds…. all without having basic understanding of financial markets or how to read the underlying information on the companies listed and publicly traded.

Don’t rush ahead without getting the foundations for your financial knowledge properly set up!

Next  – and do this within the next 48 hours –  identify where you can get the information to move your financial goals forward.  If this is a first time activity,  just focus on one of your short term goals and build up your sources of research and information.

So for example if you are looking at more information on savings, read all you can about ways to save, or understanding some of the simple examples on saving.

Sign up for one of the FREE Access the Power (ATP)  “SMARTER Finance” Seminars – delivered in your local church, these have been made available annually since 2004 and now run between April – December.

If your church has never had one of these sessions, show this blog to your Stewardship Co-ordinator and ask him/ her to arrange a session for your church group as your Stewardship Day this year.

“SMARTER Finance”  sessions are open to all participating church members in any Seventh-day Adventist church group in the UK.  A number of local church groups in England already this session for basic financial literacy as a Stewardship Day whilst others use the weekend workshops or one-day seminar services for both the church and local community outreach.

For more information or to arrange a programme at your local church click here – (this will take you to the feedback form on this blog)

In the UK, the government launched the Money Advice Service in 2010 which, in spite of its name, is not a financial advice service!   It is a free resource of financial information, although at the end of 2013 it  came under fire as the Treasury Select Committee and MPs condemn Money Advice Service as ‘not fit for purpose’

If you have a specific individual planning advice need, don’t skimp on paying for professional help –  Be sure to reach out to a good financial advisor if you have an area in your finances (eg insurances and retirement planning) that you would like to sort out. This will not only provide you with a deeper understanding of these financial products  and other financial matters, but it also will allow you and your advisor to improve your financial goals.

If you are looking for a financial planner or financial advisor make sure they have the required accreditation to offer their services.  But remember, if you are not clear about the area you need advice for you will be wasting good money.  The most expensive is not always to best and you don’t always get what you pay for.

Brighten the Corner Where You Are…

The book of Proberbs is a fantastic way for you to start gaining some of the basic understanding of how successful people approach business, wealth and finances. One chapter a day and you have covered the whole book in a month!

For Ladies in the UK, see our blogs on Proverbs 31 for secrets on successful living , business and financial success.  And see the Sorority created just for you, by women just like you PI TAU OMICRON (Π Τ Ο).

For ΠΤΟ sisterhood eligibility criteria click here.

So, do let us know if  more financial knowledge is an area you would like to see more about and we’ll post further information on practical ways to do this.

Tomorrow, we will look at another tip to help you in your financial goals.  As always, share how you are getting on with these, any questions or comments you have.

Until then, have a blessed Sabbath….onwards and upwards!

Want a really easy way to save at least £1,000 this year? The 52 week challenge

I’m taking the 52-Week Money Challenge, which gets a lot of interest online at this time of year.

This can be one of your New Year’s Resolutions!

cropped-cash_pic11.jpg

It’s very straightforward. You simply start by saving £5 in the first seven days in January (so, five days to go!) and you build up the savings by saving a larger or smaller amounts each seven days over the 52 weeks.  You can start with £52 the first week and then work down to £1 by December, when the festive season means money is a lot tighter.  I find the summer and autumn are best to do the bigger saving amounts.  The most you would have to put away in any week is £40, everything is less than that.

The variety in the saving pattern means that you can build up in a way that suits you!

To make it something everyone can take part in, why not make it a joint family goal.  Would be great to get comments on the tips for saving the amounts each week

… I’ve opened a ‘jam jar’ account with my local church Money Club…for my shoes and handbag fund … ssh, don’t tell hubby!

Here’s one way to do this weekly saving that makes it all a bit easier:

 

Week Number Dates         Weekly Amount Monthly Amount Saved So Far
1 1-7 Jan £5
2 8-14 Jan £4
3 15 – 21 Jan £3
4 22 – 28 Jan £2 £14
5 29Jan -4Feb £1 £15
6 5 – 11 Feb £10
7 12 – 18 Feb £9
8 19 – 25 Feb £8 £28
9 26Feb-4Mar £7 £49
10 5 – 11 Mar £6
11 12 – 18 Mar £20
12 19 – 25 Mar £19 £52
13 26Mar-1Apr £18 £112
14 2 – 8 Apr £17
15 9 – 15 Apr £16
16 16 – 22 Apr £15 £66
17 23 – 29 Apr £14 £174
18 30Apr-6May £13
19 7 – 13 May £12
20 14-20May £11 £50
21 21 – 27 May £30
22 28May-3Jun £29 £269
23 4 – 10 Jun £27
24 11 – 17 Jun £28 £114
25 18 – 24 Jun £26
26 25Jun – 1Jul £25 £375
27 2 – 8 Jul £24
28 9 – 15 Jul £23 £98
29 16 – 22 Jul £22
30 23 – 29 Jul £21
31 30Jul- 5Aug £35 £500
32 6 – 12 Aug £25 £103
33 13 – 19 Aug £25
34 20 – 26 Aug £25
35 27Aug-2Sep £25 £600
36 3 – 9 Sep £25 £100
37 10 – 16 Sep £25
38 17 – 23 Sep £25
39 24 – 30 Sep £25 £700
40 1 – 7 Oct £25 £100
41 8 – 14 Oct £40
42 15 – 21 Oct £39
43 22 – 28 Oct £38
44 29Oct-4Nov £37 £154 £879
45 5 – 11 Nov £36
46 12 – 18 Nov £35
47 19 – 25 Nov £20
48 26Nov-2Dec £10 £101 £980
49 3 – 9 Dec £10
50 10 – 16 Dec £5
51 17 – 23 Dec £5
52 24 – 31 Dec £5 £25 £1,005!

If you get your money once a month, the monthly saving target is also given to make it easier for you to keep a check on how you are progressing!

TOTAL: however frequently you save, it’s over £1,000 – simples!!

Try it out and let us know how you get on! Join me and let’s see how much we can all save in 2014…

Onwards and Upwards!