1 year ago

Quids In Issue 33 Winter 2016

The UK's Number 1 Money Magazine

Welcome The world

Welcome The world continues to change, what with the American elections, but not all progress is shocking, surprising or scary. The ideas behind Freecycle, which we look at in our main feature this issue, and all the similar websites it has inspired are simple and people-friendly. Tech-based, yes, but rooted in helping each other in the real world. Sharing was the starting point for our Skint Dad cover star, if only what he learned while clawing his way out of debt. Many of us don’t like to talk about it but by putting it up on his website he gives hope to people who have yet to break through back into the black. I saw the film I, Daniel Blake the other day. It’s incredible and has stirred quite a backlash. It was bound to, putting on screen what life is like for jobseekers dealing with a cold and hostile benefits system. We’ve made a clip from the film Video of the Issue and we’d love to hear what you think. Email us or share your thoughts on the Quids in! magazine Facebook page. In this issue... 03 The buzz The latest news affecting you and your finances 06 Saving cash Householders are saving a fortune by joining the craze for sharing 09 Top Tips In a timely piece of humbug, we look at how much we could save by, well, enjoying ourselves a little bit less 11 Skint Dad Ricky Willis, founder of shares his advice 13 Readers Club Stay in touch with our new Readers Club Jeff Editor 14 Crossword Win £50 cash 15 Useful numbers Advice and help Quids in! | 2

THE BUZZ The latest news affecting you and your finances 4 IN 5 GET GAZ AND LECCY UNDER CONTROL Smart meter customers take action on energy bills Thumbs up for Gaz and Leccy: 80% of smart meter users say it helps drive down bills. @quidsinmagazine Gaz and Leccy, the madcap characters in TV ads for smart meters, have received the thumbs up from customers who say the new tech helps drive down energy bills. Smart meters mean the end of estimated bills and nuisance visits from meter readers forever. Customers, as well as gas and electricity suppliers, instantly see the energy used at home and check how much they consume each day. Pointing at research that found 80 per cent of users had taken at least one step towards reducing costs, Smart Energy GB’s boss, Sacha Deshmukh, said: “People with a smart meter are much better informed and have greater levels of control over their energy use and bills.” Now in over 4 million homes, the meters should be available to all householders by the end of 2020. No payment is taken for installation. Customers in arrears or on pre-payment meters can monitor credit on the meters and the aim is to help all users reduce bills. Accurate billing should reduce over-charging for direct debit customers but those who received estimated bills for a period worry they may face a shock as new readings bring them up to date. Fears have also been raised that rural residents will wait longer due to poor wireless connection. NUMBER CRUNCHED SAVINGS Source: Money Advice Service 16 MILLION Number of people in the UK with savings of less than £100 £1,000 The amount recommended by debt charity StepChange as needed to weather most everyday financial setbacks 23% Almost a quarter of people on less than £13,500 a year had savings of £1,000 £1,341 Average cost of car repair or replacement. Unplanned events cost an average £423. Optician/ dentist/ vet bills and replacement of white goods average £200-300 Quids in! | 3