Build up an emergency fund
Everybody ought to have a certain amount of cash to hand. The rule of thumb is to have three months's essential outgoings (things like rent and food) in an instant-access account. This is called an emergency fundThe Money Advice Service
Switching accounts is crucial
You'll want to switch savings accounts occasionally in order to find the best deals, probably at least once a year if you're using an account with a 12-month bonusFelicity Hannah, personal finance journalist
Beat the taxman
Isas are one of the few totally legitimate ways you can get one over on the taxman. They were introduced in 1999 to stimulate saving and, unlike bog-standard accounts, HMRC can't get its hands on the interest your money racks upKristian Dando, Gocompare.com
Should I save or should I invest?
With saving you put your money aside without risk, usually with the chance to earn interest. With investing, there's potential for your money to grow more, but the returns aren't guaranteedGovernment information
Why use Gocompare.com for your money products?
By their very nature financial products are complex and the prospect of reviewing your money matters can be quite daunting. But our research shows comparison sites are helping people become more money conscious and feel more empowered when making financial decisionsGocompare.com
Why choose Gocompare.com's savings and Isa comparison service?
With the help of our partners LoveMoney, you can quickly and easily compare the best rates for savings and for Individual Savings Accounts (Isas).
Low interest rates and austerity have been with us for some time, meaning it's harder than ever - and more important than ever - to find a good return on your money. Learn all about the products available in our guides
If you choose to use our comparison service, the easy-to-use page will present information describing the key facts about each account and will offer you the chance to purchase the products. Amongst the savings accounts on offer, you can choose from easy-access options, peer-to-peer savings and one-, three- or five-year bonds. Isa accounts can be a fantastic, tax-free way to save your money, and we can help you find the right deal whether you're looking for cash Isas and/or stocks and shares Isas.
Low interest rates and austerity have been with us for some time, meaning it's harder than ever - and more important than ever - to find a good return on your money. Learn all about the products available by reading our guides, where you'll also find both our frequently asked questions on savings and frequently asked questions on Isas.
Many people seem mystified by Isas but they are basically just regular savings products protected by a tax-free 'wrapper', meaning that you get to keep 100% of the precious interest. We've got dedicated guides on cash Isas, stocks and shares Isas and junior Isas, with information on allowances, transfers, age restrictions, how many Isas you can own, and much more.
Our guides offer more information on key saving products such as easy access accounts, fixed-rate bonds, notice accounts, regular-saver deals, guaranteed equity bonds, affinity accounts, over-50s products and off-shore accounts. Find out how interest rates and tax rates are displayed and paid, and why you should pay attention to maximum and minimum deposit levels, notice periods, withdrawal restrictions and short-term bonuses.
You'll also find information on National Savings and Investments (NS&I), the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) and the Banking Code, plus more general help on why you should save, and the importance of keeping a rainy-day fund.
Did you know...?
- The tax year runs from 6 April to 5 April
- The cash Isa limit for 2013-14 is £5,760 and for 2014-15 it will be £5,940. So long as the money stays in an Isa account, you won't have to pay any tax on the interest you earn
- 21% of consumers have never switched their Isa or savings accounts