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Tag Archive: Savings

  1. Debt Awareness Week 2024.

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    Debt Awareness Week 2024.

     

    This week is Debt Awareness Week, a poignant reminder about the impact that debt can have on individuals and families.

    Taking place from March 18th – 24th, it’s an initiative that aims to shed light on the issue of debt and to offer support to those grappling with its consequences, reassuring them that help is available for those who need it.

    Why debt awareness matters.

    Debt is a complex and often stigmatised subject, yet it is a reality for millions of people worldwide. From mounting credit card bills to overwhelming loan repayments, the cycle of debt can feel insurmountable without the proper knowledge and support. Debt Awareness Week serves as an opportunity to break the silence surrounding debt and to empower individuals with the information and resources they need to regain control of their financial wellbeing. It’s also an invaluable opportunity to reassure anybody struggling with debt that help is available.

    Together, by fostering debt awareness, we can:

    Educate by equipping individuals with the tools and understanding necessary to make informed financial decisions and navigate the complexities of debt management.

    Destigmatize. Shame and stigma often accompany debt, preventing individuals from seeking help and exacerbating their financial struggles. By fostering open and honest conversations about debt, we can eliminate the stigma surrounding financial difficulties and create a supportive environment where individuals feel empowered to seek assistance without fear of judgement.

    Empower. At Leeds Credit Union, we believe that everyone deserves a chance to achieve financial stability. Whether through debt consolidation loans or our Money and Budgeting Service (MABS), we are committed to empowering individuals to take control of their finances and work towards a brighter, debt-free future.

    Join us in spreading awareness.

    This Debt Awareness Week, we invite you to join us in spreading awareness and support for those affected by debt. Whether by sharing resources or simply offering an ear to those in need, together we can make a meaningful difference in the lives of individuals and families facing financial challenges.

    If you or someone you know is struggling with debt, you can contact us for support and advice here.

  2. Celebrate St Patrick’s Day In Leeds!

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    Celebrate St Patrick’s Day In Leeds!

    Given Leeds’ well-deserved reputation as a city in which there’s almost always something to do, you won’t be surprised to hear that anyone looking to celebrate Saint Patrick’s Day this weekend is in for a treat!

    March 17th is the day on which Irish culture and heritage are celebrated in all their glory in commemoration of Saint Patrick, Ireland’s foremost patron saint.

    Today, despite only being officially recognised as a public holiday in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated all over the world. In fact, it’s celebrated in more countries than any other national festival, with revellers typically enjoying public parades, traditional Irish music sessions, the wearing of green clothing and, of course, a glass or two of Irish beer or whiskey. 

    There will be lots to do in Leeds City Centre this Sunday to mark the occasion, with a major St Patrick’s Day celebration planned. 

    Organised by the Leeds St Patrick’s Day Parade Committee, the day will feature lots of free entertainment, including:

    • The St. Patrick’s Day parade itself – join the procession at Millennium Square and take a journey through the city alongside a wave of colourful rafts and walking displays!
    • Family fun in Millennium Square between 10.30am and 4pm, featuring a variety of performers and artists.
    • Music from pipe and brass bands. 
    • Refreshment stalls, rides for children and a bar for adults.

    For more information, visit: https://www.millsqleeds.com/whatson-event/st-patricks-day-parade/

    Sláinte!

  3. We’ve Been Nominated For Two Consumer Credit Awards!

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    We’ve Been Nominated For Two Consumer Credit Awards!

    We’re delighted to be in the running for not one but TWO Consumer Credit Awards – and not only can you help us win them, you could win £1,000 just for taking part!

    We’ve been nominated in both the ‘Best Credit Union (North)’ and ‘Best Credit Union Loan Provider’ categories. If you think we deserve to win, we’d love it if you took a moment to vote by following the link below and answering a few short questions about your experiences with us. All voters are entered into a draw to win a £1,000 cash prize!

    https://smartmoneypeople.com/consumer-credit-awards/review/leeds-credit-union-reviews/loans

    Run by the financial services experts at Smart Money People, the Consumer Credit Awards recognise the achievements of organisations in the credit industry – including loan providers, credit unions, credit information partners, retail finance and more. It’s up to consumers to vote, making the awards both unique and a true endorsement of customer satisfaction. 

    Unlike other awards, the winners of the Consumer Credit Awards are decided solely by customers, making winning one particularly satisfying!

    Jacqueline Dewey, CEO at Smart Money People, said: “In the last 12 months we’ve seen consumers face increased costs of living and multiple interest rate rises. These factors have undoubtedly resulted in another busy year for the credit industry. The Consumer Credit Awards recognise those companies that continue to go above and beyond. Thanks to the data we collect with our reviews, the Consumer Credit Awards are an endorsement of customers’ experiences and a symbol of the UK’s very best companies. We can’t wait to see who consumers decide will win in 2024.”

    Voting closes on July 11th.

  4. The Recession – Leeds Credit Union’s Perspective.

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    The Recession – Leeds Credit Union’s Perspective.

    Upon hearing the news that the UK fell into recession towards the end of 2023, many people are understandably anxious, including our valued members and our staff. After all, recession – defined as ‘a fall in gross domestic product (GDP) across two consecutive three-month periods’ – invariably introduces a wave of uncertainty, particularly around financial stability.

    Understanding the recession.

    According to the news, the recession came about as a result of the UK economy shrinking by a sizable 0.3%. This followed previous reductions between July and September, while the annual growth for 2023 stood at a mere 0.1%. 

    While this may seem bleak, people may be reassured by the fact that economic downturns actually create an environment in which it becomes possible to reassess and adapt our financial strategies, so there are some causes for optimism.

    Impact on personal finances.

    A recession will almost certainly make people worry about their personal finances, with the struggling economy increasing the prospect of tighter personal budgets, job uncertainties and falling incomes.

    Unfortunately, the looming shadow of inflation is unlikely to put anyone’s mind at rest either.

    As the Bank of England lifted interest rates to tame inflation, the pace of price rises stood at an alarming 4% in January – double the bank’s 2% target. For personal finances, this indicates a potential reduction in purchasing power, affecting everything from daily expenses to significant outlays such as mortgages and loans.

    Leeds Credit Union stands with you.

    As your credit union, we understand the concerns of our members. 

    Our role is to help you navigate and weather this financial storm and we believe that providing guidance and tailored services to safeguard your financial health during these tough times are just a couple of the ways in which we can do so.

    Rest assured, we are developing strategies to meet the potential challenges that lie ahead. These include: 

    • providing financial counselling to our members to help them manage their debts; 
    • facilitating access to affordable credit to prevent over-reliance on high-cost lenders; and 
    • providing resources to maintain a level of savings among our members.

    We are dedicated to helping our members adapt to fluctuations in their income and increasing prices. We understand the importance of reviewing and revising budgeting strategies, prioritising financial obligations and considering flexible repayment options.

    As we tackle this recession head-on, we remain unwavering in our commitment to remain a reliable financial partner to our members.

    Some good news.

    While the economic terrain may appear challenging, it’s worth noting that this particular recession has been described by Ruth Gregory, the Deputy Chief UK Economist at Capital Economics, as: “as mild as they come”. 

    For any LCU members struggling with their finances, we urge you to maintain open communication with us. Our dedicated team is ready and available to provide support and practical insights based on your individual circumstances and, more than ever, let’s remember that the essence of Leeds Credit Union is the principle of unity: members saving together and lending to each other at an affordable interest rate.

    With collective effort, thoughtful strategies and resilience, we can emerge from this stronger and more financially robust than before.

  5. Mental Health Awareness Week 2023

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    Mental Health Awareness Week 2023

    Taking place from May 15th – 21st, the theme of this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week is anxiety. 

    Defined in the dictionary as ‘a feeling of worry, nervousness or unease about something with an uncertain outcome’, anxiety is a normal emotion. One of the leading causes of it is money, which anyone with concerns over how they’ll afford to pay for food or energy can likely attest.

    The good news is that saving even a small amount of money each month can have a positive impact on your mental health. Here are a few of the ways:

    It reduces stress and anxiety

    Financial stress is a common cause of anxiety and can have a detrimental impact on mental health. By saving money each month, even if it’s only a small amount, you can reduce financial stress and anxiety by building a safety net and having some funds to help cover unexpected expenses.

    It improves feelings of security

    Having savings can help improve feelings of security and stability. Knowing that you have money set aside provides a sense of comfort and peace of mind, which can improve overall mental health.

    It increases confidence and self-esteem

    Saving money can also increase confidence. Achieving your financial goals, no matter how small, can provide a sense of accomplishment and boost your self-esteem, which helps improve mental well-being.

    It reduces the financial strain on relationships

    Financial pressures are a common cause of relationship problems. By saving money to make you more financially resilient, you can reduce any financial strains in your relationships and help reduce your anxiety and stress levels.

    It provides a sense of control

    Saving money can also provide a sense of control over your finances. This can help reduce feelings of helplessness and increase feelings of empowerment, which can have a positive impact on mental health.

    Get saving with Leeds Credit Union

    Making saving a priority is a great way to improve your financial well-being and boost your mental health. We offer a range of savings accounts that enable you to make regular contributions and access your money instantly – for more information, click here.

    We also offer a Money and Budgeting Advice Service (MABS) to our members to help them make the most of their money. Find out more about it here.

    For more information about Mental Health Awareness Week 2023, you can visit the official website here.

  6. Mental Health and Saving

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    Mental Health and Saving

    Saving money each month can have a positive impact on your mental health in several ways. Here are a few of them:

    It reduces stress and anxiety

    Financial stress is a common cause of anxiety and can have a detrimental impact on mental health. By saving money each month, even if it’s only a small amount, you can reduce financial stress and anxiety by building a safety net and having some funds to help cover unexpected expenses.

    It improves feelings of security

    Having savings can help improve feelings of security and stability. Knowing that you have money set aside provides a sense of comfort and peace of mind, which can improve overall mental health.

    It increases confidence and self-esteem

    Saving money can also increase confidence. Achieving your financial goals, no matter how small, can provide a sense of accomplishment and boost your self-esteem, which helps improve mental well-being.

    It reduces the financial strain on relationships

    Financial pressures are a common cause of relationship problems. By saving money to make you more financially resilient, you can reduce any financial strains in your relationships and help reduce your anxiety and stress levels.

    It provides a sense of control

    Saving money can also provide a sense of control over your finances. This can help reduce feelings of helplessness and increase feelings of empowerment, which can have a positive impact on mental health.

    Get saving with Leeds Credit Union

    Making saving a priority is a great way to improve your financial well-being and boost your mental health. We offer a range of savings accounts that enable you to make regular contributions and access your money instantly – for more information, click here.

    We also offer a Money and Budgeting Advice Service (MABS) to our members to help them make the most of their money. Find out more about it here.

  7. Show Your Finances Some Love for Valentine’s Day 2023

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    Show Your Finances Some Love for Valentine’s Day 2023

    Love is in the air for Valentine’s Day 2023, but instead of focusing on your partner, why not turn your attention to your finances?

    Here are our top tips for looking after your money.

    Saving

    Whether it’s to help keep you safe for an emergency or to help you afford a big ticket item like a car, most people are aware of the importance of regularly putting money aside. But with the current cost of living putting a significant strain on many people’s finances, how can you start saving money now if you weren’t already doing so?

    The quick answer is reduce your outgoings wherever possible and save the difference. Begin by working out what you’re spending money on, identifying what you can do without and then start saving that money instead. Take a look at what subscriptions you have, whether it’s Netflix, Amazon or ‘bolt-ons’ related to your mobile phone and if you can live without them, cancel them and start saving what you would have spent. Even if you only save a few pounds per week, it all adds up.  

    At Leeds Credit Union, we offer a comprehensive range of savings accounts to help ensure your money can grow consistently and securely.

    Consolidate your existing debts

    If you have several loans and/or credit cards to your name and are having a hard time keeping up with the repayments, it might be worth combining them all into one loan.

    Known as a debt consolidation loan, this type of loan involves you borrowing enough money to pay off your current debts from a single lender, which helps you reduce your monthly outgoings and allows you to take back control of your finances.

    At Leeds Credit Union, our members can borrow from £250 to £25,000 to help them become more financially stable. For more information about the different loans we offer, click here.

    Budgeting

    Making a budget is one of the simplest and most effective ways of keeping tabs on your finances, so sit down with your bank statements and work out how much you need to spend on essentials (your rent/mortgage, utility bills and groceries), how much you can afford to spend on hobbies/events (such as birthdays or days out) and how much you should therefore be able to save each month.

    By ensuring you always know how much money you have coming in and going out, you can identify potentially expensive periods – such as Christmas – ahead of time and take proactive steps to ensure you have sufficient funds set aside to cover the cost without getting into debt. Making – and sticking to – a budget will also make you think twice before making any purchases you haven’t already accounted for, reducing your risk of overspending.

    If you don’t already make regular budgets, now is the time to start. Lots of budget planners are available for free online to help you get started (this one from Money Saving Expert is great) and our Money and Budgeting Service (MABS) is also available to help tenants of Housing Leeds create realistic budgets and ensure their bills are paid on time.

    Sign up to online banking

    Although the vast majority of credit unions and banks still have branches which customers can visit in person, online banking is now the most popular banking method in the UK.

    As well as being incredibly secure, online banking delivers a raft of other benefits including providing 24-hour access to your accounts, whether at home or out and about, via your bank’s website or app. It also enables you to carry out transactions, such as transferring money, almost instantly, all via your smartphone, tablet or laptop, making it easier than ever to keep track of your finances.

    If you are an existing Leeds Credit Union member, you can sign up for our online banking service here and download our app here.

    Talk to somebody

    Discussing your personal finances more openly increases your financial and mental wellbeing so, if you’re having financial difficulty, talk to somebody about it.

    Studies indicate that talking about money makes you feel better about it and helps you build healthier money habits, such as saving more regularly and making less risky financial decisions. In addition, talking about money reduces stress and anxiety and strengthens relationships. 

    Whether you choose to talk about your finances with your partner, family or friends, broaching the subject is an excellent way of getting to grips with your financial situation.

    How can Leeds Credit Union help?

    At Leeds Credit Union, we provide straightforward and affordable financial products and services to our members, helping them take back control of their money and achieve financial security.

    If you’re interested in becoming our newest member, visit this page.