Personal Finance: Why I have 4 Barclays bank accounts

April 14, 2016
How I manage my personal finances with 4 Barclays bank accounts, Barclays Mobile Banking, and Barclays Personalised Card Designer.


WITH A LITTLE HELP FROM THE ‘FANTASTIC FOUR’

You might hesitate to take tips on personal finance from someone who proudly, even if erroneously, proclaims themselves ‘broke’ upon first impression (anyone here side-eyes my blog’s name?) but you know the saying — judge a blog not by its cover but instead by the contents within. Lifestyle wise, we’re talking ten or more holidays a year, a shiny new purse every season, twice a London homeowner (and counting), plus the occasional fancy meal in London and across Europe…so whatever I’m doing with my money, I’m not doing too terribly.

I get by with a little help from my friends, the squad I call ‘The Fantastic Four’. Even cooler than Jessica Alba in a catsuit swooping in (unseen) to do my taxes come the 28th of February - I manage my money using 4 bank accounts with Barclays. We’re not even counting my other accounts - including two business ones and a few other personals - we’re discussing just these four Barclays bank accounts.

How I manage my personal finances with 4 Barclays bank accounts, Barclays Mobile Banking, and Barclays Personalised Card Designer.

To differentiate between my four cards (let’s face it, unless you have A Beautiful Mind for numbers you will not be able to tell at a glance which witch is which) I use the Barclays Personalised Card Designer to give each of my cards a very distinct look. For everyday activities, I chose the iconic tropical foliage of Martinique to represent ‘life’. What makes plants grow and keeps us alive? Water, hence the aqua texture for the card that pays my bills. My third card which safeguards money for emergencies has an ominous pattern of cracks to remind me of the fractures life throws at me and that I have the means to mend them. Finally, a design of pink feathers for my fourth and last card (money for dreams and desires) to symbolise my flights of fancy.

How I manage my personal finances with 4 Barclays bank accounts, Barclays Mobile Banking, and Barclays Personalised Card Designer.

I manage my money with the super nifty Barclays Mobile Banking app on my iPhone.
Having secure online banking at my fingertips makes it much easier to keep on top of my finances, even on the go.
Every payday I immediately allocate my money into these 4 accounts - Activities (A), Bills (B), Crisis (C), and Dream (D) - using this equation:


Know your ABCs and Ds 

A IS FOR ACTIVITIES 
We’ll get to this in a bit.

B IS FOR BILLS
For example, let’s say that your monthly income after taxes is £5,000. Set aside £2,000 for B - BILLS (mortgage, groceries, memberships etc.) and leave this bank account well alone - the only outgoings this account should have is Direct Debits and standing orders for bills. This way you’ll never find yourself behind on your bills, and believe me, you don’t want to owe money because it will affect your credit score. Hello, bad credit, goodbye, mortgage on that dream townhouse…

C IS FOR CRISIS, D IS FOR DREAM
Then, divide the remaining £3,000 into accounts A - ACTIVITIES, C - CRISIS, and D - DREAMS. Again, as with B - BILLS, do not touch the money in accounts C & D unless absolutely necessary. C - CRISIS is money for a rainy day; be it a broken boiler, a broken pet, or a broken leg. D - DREAMS is the money you put towards aspirations - will be it your dream kitchen? That trip to Antartica on your bucket list? To fund the Peruvian folk music meets Norwegian death metal studio album your friends and family strongly discourage? Whatever you like, they’re your dreams and this is your ‘dreams fund’. 

Any extra somethin' somethin's; like money I get for my birthday, income from extra work, bonuses, interest etc. goes into C and D.

...and finally...

A IS FOR ACTIVITIES
Now that you’ve put some of your salary into savings then allocated a set amount to pay your bills with, you have £1,000 to spend in the account A - ACTIVITIES. Now this account you can help yourself to, no need to freeze the debit card in a block of ice. Leave at home the debit cards for the other 3 bank accounts and keep in your wallet only the card for your ACTIVITIES account. The sudden and depressing realisation that you are in fact not the weather man and you can not make it rain? That’s called clever budgeting. The “Louis XIII and it’s (not) on me” will stop you from overspending which in turn will make you not broke in the long run - no unpaid bills, no credit card debt, plus an ever-growing savings account.


How I manage my personal finances with 4 Barclays bank accounts, Barclays Mobile Banking, and Barclays Personalised Card Designer.

Now that you know how I keep on top of my finances with Barclays Mobile Banking and Barclays Personalised Card Designer, tell me:
Are you a fan of the ABCD system? 
How do you manage your personal finances?
What tips & tricks do you use to get rich or die tryin'

This post is not sponsored by Barclays, although I have collaborated with them on previous occasions.

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