Cheryl is a teacher looking to retire at 60 – with a helping hand from Snoop!
I'll be honest, when I first got Snoop, I was really annoyed. All that money I had wasted over the years - and here was Snoop suddenly making it so easy to make savings! My annoyance quickly gave way to delight, though. Within just one week I had saved £30 per month on my energy bill, plus another £12 on my mobile phone costs.
For me, and anyone like me, this is great news. I'm about to turn 50; I work full-time as a teacher; I have a mortgage. I also have a dream of going part-time, to get a better work-life balance, and retiring by the age of 60.
It's embarrassing to admit it, but for the first time in my life I feel in control of my own money. The reason? Snoop! Snoop allows me to see a daily summary of all my accounts. In the past I would have only a vague idea of how each account was looking. Snoop also allows me to think ahead: the forecasts and regular payment updates are brilliant tools to keep me in the black. I also love Snoop's helpful tips and advice, all gathered together in one easy-to-navigate place.
I feel that part-time hours and early retirement are actually viable goals now, not just idle dreams. The money I'm saving because of Snoop is going into a pot to allow me to achieve these goals.
I would encourage everyone to get Snoop. It's designed to be very customisable, so everyone will benefit, no matter your circumstances. Just be prepared for that initial annoyance that you didn't do it ages ago!
A friendly daily reminder helps me overcome my inner Ostrich…and put the brakes on!
January is usually a difficult month for me, as it is for most people.
I find that by spending so much in November and early December, in preparation for Christmas, I fall into bad habits.
For the rest of December I'm a scattercash, too used to buying stuff and getting hooked on the dopamine hit of each purchase. Then January hits like a sledgehammer.
This month has still been tough (hello again lockdown), but Snoop has helped me to keep much better control over my spending.
In the bad old days I would think about checking my main bank balance regularly, but I'm definitely a bit of an ostrich! Most days I would rather carry on regardless and worry about it later.
With Snoop, I now get a friendly daily reminder to check all my balances at once, which I find invaluable to stay on top of things.
Just doing this each day has put the brakes on my spending several times this month. And the weekly review is the confirmation I need to help me decide if I should cut back in the coming week, or if I'm doing okay and can afford a little treat, or to put some extra in my savings pot.
On the topic of savings, Snoop found me a really great ISA which also gives cashback when you open an account.
This is another thing I really like about Snoop: it prompts me to act on things I know I should do, but never get around to doing.
With the minimum of effort, I now have a savings account that is contributing to my dream of early retirement. Cheers, Snoop!
Snoop taking the strain to avoid TMI
I think a lot of us suffer from scattered attention these days. Social media scrolling forms bad habits. We might watch a little bit of the news, and then have to turn off for our mental health. There are just so many things shouting for our attention: emails, app notifications, texts, multiple types of message - and we still get those brown envelopes through the letterbox.
Before I got Snoop, I really struggled with Too Much Information. My bank sent me information and advice, as did my credit card company, but I also tried to seek out information and advice for myself. You know the sort of thing: money advice sites and apps, forums, websites, blogs, YouTube channels...I would trawl through these whenever I felt like I had to get some control back over my runaway finances. Then I would suffer information overload, and I was back at square one, feeling defeated.
I can't emphasise enough how brilliant Snoop is in terms of doing all the hard work and bringing the information and advice to you. As you become more familiar with the app, you'll learn how to tweak and refine your preferences. I would say it takes at least a couple of months to build up enough data. The more personalised data Snoop has, the more relevant and useful it will be for you. I found that after the initial setting up and refining period, I now only need to do the occasional update, taking just a few minutes out of my day. So it's not only my scattercash behaviour Snoop helps – it’s my scatterbrain too.
Snoop has made me more money-confident in 3 months than my bank did in 20 years
This month I made a big decision about my bank.
Snoop has made me realise that technology and personal finance make great companions, so my old bank's shortcomings are now even more obvious to me.
For years we've tolerated the clunky websites, the slow processes, and the lack of personalisation from our high-street bank accounts.
Slowly, it seems, they’re trying to catch up with apps like Snoop and internet-only banks. But for me, and many others, it’s definitely a case of too little, too late.
I know how customer-focused and clever Snoop is, and I've experienced how smart and secure my web bank is.
Most importantly, Snoop has made me more money-confident in three months than my previous bank did in 20+ years.
As I’ve mentioned in previous posts – Snoop allows me to think ahead and the forecasts and regular payment updates are excellent tools to help me keep on top of my money and out of the red.
The big difference is that it feels as though Snoop is on my side and wants me to win, prompting me to act on things that will put money in my pocket.
A high-street bank has never made me feel that way. (More a case of taking money out of my pocket and almost definitely not on my side!)
So there it is. Time for this middle-aged woman to fully embrace the new age of digital personal finance and open banking, and time to ditch my old-fashioned twentieth-century bank for good.