Five money resolutions for 2024 – and how to achieve them

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Kirsty Kerr

January 11, 2024

3 mins read

Whether you’re looking for some inspiration for the new year or want some top tips on how to achieve some common money goals, we’ve got you covered. Here are our top five money resolutions for 2024 and how you can achieve them.

1. Nail down your budget

It sounds simple, but a having clear and realistic budget that you can actually stick to is game-changing when it comes to making the most of your money and reaching your goals.

Start by writing down everything you count as a necessity and the amount you pay for it each month – include everything from your rent to your monthly subscriptions. Add it all up, then take the total away from your monthly salary. What’s left will be the amount you have to cover your ‘wants’ and your savings. Your ‘wants’ will cover everything from socialising, takeaways and trips to the coffee shop, while your savings are for rainy days, holidays or any personal goals.

If you’re not sure how much to allocate to each pot, you could try the 50/30/20 method. This breaks your spending down to 50% for needs, 30% for ‘wants’ and 20% for savings. You can change the split each month depending on your circumstances at the time.

If you need help creating a budget, MoneyHelper has a budget planner tool which can help you create a plan.

2. Make a dent in your debt

Paying off your debt is usually a good money goal to have – particularly when interest rates are high, like they are now.

Use the budget you’ve created to understand how much you can afford to put towards any debts. Or think about consolidating your debts if it means you could potentially get a lower interest rate.

If you’re finding debt hard to manage just now, there are places you can turn to for help. Try Citizens Advice or National Debtline for free advice. 

3. Start saving for a big goal

We’ve all got personal goals we want to save for. Whether that’s a new home, a new car or even a wedding.

A good first step is finding the right place for whatever you can afford to put aside. That way, your money can work harder for you.

For example, if you’re saving for your first home, you could consider saving into a Lifetime ISA (LISA). With a LISA, you can save up to £4,000 each tax year and get a 25% bonus from the government on top of your savings. So, if you save £4,000 each year, you’ll get an additional £1,000 on top. You need to meet certain criteria to be able to open and make penalty-free withdrawals from a LISA, so look into it first to make sure you fit the bill.

For other medium to long-term goals such as a wedding, new car or special trip abroad, you might find a Stocks & Shares ISA could be right for you. By investing your money, you give it the opportunity to grow over time. Cash savings have less risk but, unless you’re receiving an interest rate that keeps pace with inflation, your savings could buy you less in the future.

Remember the value of investments can go down as well as up and may be worth less than was paid in.

4. Build an emergency fund

Sometimes money troubles can start when something unexpected happens and you find yourself needing to pay for something you can’t afford – like car problems or home repairs. From there, it can feel like you’re always struggling to catch up. 

Having an emergency fund can help you feel prepared for any unexpected moments and keep your finances healthy all year round. It’s arguably just as important as saving for your big goals.

It’s usually recommended to have six months’ worth of living expenses in your emergency fund (you can find out how much that is from the budget you made earlier). But even aiming to save two or three months’ worth is a great goal to begin with. And, really, any amount in your emergency fund is better than nothing, so don’t be afraid to start smaller.

5. Invest in your future

Don’t forget about future you. Regularly putting some of your income towards your retirement now and allowing it to build over time can set you up for success in the future.

Your pension plan is designed to be a tax-efficient way to do this. Thanks to the tax relief you’d normally get on your payments, it’ll cost you less than you might think to pay more into your pension plan. Plus, if you have a workplace pension, your employer may contribute too. Some will even offer matching schemes where they’ll match your payments up to a certain percentage. So it’s worth making sure you’re getting all of the benefits you’re entitled to.

You can watch our short video to find out more about how your pension works.

If you’re a Standard Life customer, you can review your pension payments online. To find out more about our online services, visit our website. Or you can go to our support page for FAQs and ways to get in touch.


The information here is based on our understanding in January 2024 and shouldn’t be taken as financial advice.

A pension is an investment and its value can go down as well as up and may be worth less than was paid in.

Your own personal circumstances, including where you live in the UK, will have an impact on the tax you pay. Laws and tax rules may change in the future.

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