I am in my late 20s, living in the UK, and in my third year of professional work (one year industrial placement, two years since graduating from University). I have very little in the way of monthly expenditure at the moment- living in a house share (with very cheap rent), most bills included in rent, and have pretty much reached the limits on which the various bank accounts I have open will pay interest.
Since graduating, I have been saving using a few different current accounts which pay interest on balances up to a certain limit (a few of which have conditions that you have a number of Direct Debits going out from those accounts in order to receive interest on the balance of the account).
But since I am now at the point where I am earning interest on the maximum balance for most of these accounts, I am starting to look at other ways to save/ invest, but I'm just not really sure what to look into/ what the best options to explore are.
I have already opened: Santander 123 account, Bank of Scotland Classic Account with Vantage, TSB Classic Plus account and a Club Lloyds account, as well as having an ISA and one or two Regular Savers on-going. I am maintaining the maximum balance that you can receive interest on in each of these current accounts. My ISA matured recently (3 years paying 3.75%), and that balance is now sat in a Flexible ISA (earning 0.8%) while I explore what's best to do with it.
I take home roughly 1k per month after tax, rent and other regular outgoings such as food, travel, leisure, student loan repayments, phone/ broadband, etc.
I am at the point financially where I have saved enough to have a reasonable deposit on a house, but am not at the point in life where I want to commit to being a home-owner for a couple of reasons:
- My work is contract based, so there's no guarantee that I will be working in the same location as I am at the moment, this time next year (in fact that's looking less and less likely, as the current contract is coming to an end, and there's some uncertainty as to when the client will begin the next contract- government projects). It would not be unrealistic to think that I may be in the situation where I don't have any work at all in a few months time, and so I am currently applying for other jobs.
- Having gone through the usual cycle of school- university- job, etc... I am thinking that now would potentially be a good time to look into doing some travelling, so I would rather not pursue buying a house for the moment, in case I do decide to do some travelling for a year or so.
I have recently started watching the stock prices of a few companies to get an idea of investing in the stock market, but feel like I need to research this & watch the values for a while before I go ahead and invest in any shares.
I have a credit card, which I pay off monthly, but other than that, the only debt I have is my student loan (approximately £25,000).
So, given my situation, are there any other ways that I can save/ invest that I am not currently doing? Or would it be best to start using any excess funds, that I won't earn any interest on, to pay off my student loan quicker? The interest that my student loan is incurring is currently 0.9%.