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Wary women case study: Dawn

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Dawn, 41, has always cherished her freedom, but living for today hasn’t left her with much for tomorrow. She’s just moved to Brighton after 10 years in London, works as an events co-ordinator and is a keen swing dancer. She would love the financial freedom to match her personal freedom, but she has no pension and doesn’t own her own home. She tends to spend what she earns, but has no dependents and no debts.

Dawn’s priorities: Building a nest egg to give her a bit more financial stability.

OUR EXPERT SAYS

Cathi Harrison is a paraplanner. She say, “Having no debts gives Dawn a great starting point. Unfortunately, the only way to get the financial freedom she craves is to spend less than she earns. If increasing her earnings isn’t an option, she should look to reduce expenditure. A manual check through a few months’ bank statements will quickly show some areas that can be trimmed. She should check telephone, broadband and utilities and ensure she is on a competitive rate on all of those. Once she has lowered her expenses, she should save any monthly surplus into a high interest savings account, building up initially an emergency fund. After that she can consider a stocks & shares ISA”.

OUR 6 MONTH CHALLENGE

Check your utilities bills and cut expenditure as much as possible. Have a look at these comparison sites and try and save here. Energy regulator Ofgem says on average a switch could save us £200 a year.

Look at our ISA Best Buys. Could you start saving £25 a month into one?