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Bank account skimming sounds like it might be something illegal but it’s not (you’re thinking of ATM skimming where your card is cloned!) It’s a simple technique that can help you save small amounts of money consistently. Best of all there are lots of simple ways to do it including using a clever app called Chip.
It is fairly rare now that I have much cash in my wallet – I’m an ApplePay girl for small purchases and do a lot of online shopping. Loose change isn’t something we have a lot of in our pockets or wallets.
The great thing is that with bank skimming, you can make it work for you however you choose and whether you spend cold, hard cash or via cards.
How bank account skimming works
If you have a balance of say £87.84 in your current account, you could round this down to a round figure of £87 by ‘skimming’ off 84p from your current account in to a savings account. Some accounts don’t allow transfers under £1 but in this case, if you can afford to, round down £7.84 to £80.
The thing is, you can ‘skim’ off whatever you can afford; for some people in this example, they could round down 84p, others £2.84 and others £27.84.
There are two simple ways to skim – manually or automatic saving using a dedicated app. In this post I cover manual skimming. Head over here to see my post on why I love the clever app Chip which will skim for you.
Skimming your online bank account manually
The beauty of account skimming is that you can do it as frequently as you like. Using the example above, set yourself a target to log in to your online account – daily, weekly, fortnightly – and skim off an amount to make your bank balance a round figure again.
Sometimes, it may just be pence, sometimes it could be in the £10s; you can skim as little or as much as you like. The key is to making sure you skim regularly.
Old school skimming
If you are someone who does use a lot of cash or doesn’t like the idea of skimming with online accounts, you can just as easily skim your wallet! You could opt to skim all bronze and silver coins, or all coins of any variety leaving just the notes, or all £1 coins – whatever suits you. With this one, just make sure they go in to a jar or money box with a secure lid so you aren’t tempted to raid it for coffee money!
Try setting yourself a target of skimming once a week and see how much money you save with the 52 withdrawals to your savings account by this time next year.