Dates for your 2023 diary that'll save you considerable cash
However you keep yourself organised – be it a detailed Filofax, kitchen calendar, mobile reminders or a pile of post-its – here are key dates for the year ahead that you can't afford to miss.
You'll need to put in a little work, but at the end of that hour or two you'll be primed for a year of financial savings – especially important this year as we're all feeling the pinch.
The first three are easy, as they're fixed dates for all. So if they apply to you, mark them down.
31 January – online self-assessment tax return deadline 🧾️
If you don't have tax automatically deducted from your income (most do), you'll need to submit a tax return – and the deadline is 31 January 2023 for the 2021/22 tax year. Miss it and you'll face a fine of at least £100.
31 March and 30 September – energy meter reading days ⚡️
On 1 April and (potentially) 1 October, energy prices will change for most households, so it's a good idea to give a meter reading to your supplier around those dates to avoid a dispute over what you used before or after prices rose.
5 April – last day of 2022/23 tax year 💷
The new 2023/24 tax year starts on 6 April, which means two main things for 5 April:
An ISA is a savings or investment account you never pay tax. Most can earn up to £1,000 tax-free from normal savings anyway, but if you're a big saver or a very high earner, so you do pay tax on savings, you have until 5 April to use this year's allowance as it doesn't carry over.
If you're a wannabe first-time buyer and haven't filled (or opened) a Lifetime ISA, which gives a 25% boost plus interest on up to £4,000, consider if it's worth it before this date.
The rest are a bit trickier as you'll need to dig out your own dates, but most should be easy enough to find in your inbox, online accounts or on any paperwork you've received and kept.
These are in no particular order, so do read to the end, though we're starting with the ones that would likely give you the most savings.
1. Six months before your mortgage rate expires 🏠
If your fixed, tracker or discount mortgage deal ends this year, you'll want to avoid being automatically moved to your lender's expensive standard variable rate.
You can usually lock in a new mortgage offer three to six months before your current deal ends, though there's a lot to consider before you do. See our guide on getting ready to remortgage for full help.
2. Three weeks before your car and home insurance policy renews 🚗 🏡
Never let any insurance policy blindly auto-renew, always run a comparison to check how much you could save from switching. Even if you want to stay with the same insurer, this gives you the ammunition in the form of a benchmark quote to haggle and negotiate a cheaper price.
Our research shows getting quotes around three weeks before the start day are cheapest for car (aim for 23 days before) and home (21 days ahead), so pencil those dates in.
Then use our MSE Car Insurance Compare+ tool (fill in one questionnaire to see your cheapest insurers as a benchmark, with bespoke, personalised tips to cut costs further) and our cheap home insurance cost-cutting system.
3. Around two weeks before the 0% or promo rewards period ends on your credit or debit card 💳
If you've got a credit card with any promotional rate ending this year, make sure to give yourself enough time to sort it. There are two main types you may have:
- Credit cards with 0% interest that you've used to borrow money. If you've got a 0% balance transfer, spending or money transfer credit card, you'll know the interest-free period will only last for a set number of months. Once this ends, you'll start paying expensive interest on any balance left on the card.
Hopefully you've budgeted to clear the card anyway, but if you've not, check your chances of acceptance for a new 0% balance transfer card to give you more time to pay it off, without wracking up interest charges. The new 0% period usually starts from the day you're accepted, which is why you'd ideally time it to start around the time the old one ends.
- Credit or debit cards that give rewards (such as points or cashback) when you spend. Used right, reward cards can be lucrative as they pay you for doing your normal spending. Yet many come with special intro bonuses, or work on a tier system that resets on the anniversary of you getting the card – for example, Chase gives 1% cashback for one year and Amex pays 0.5% cashback up to £10,000 spent annually, then 1% cashback on £10,000+. So if you've a big purchase planned, paying for it before these end or reset could bag you some easy cash.
Equally, if your card has annual fee, it's usually charged on your anniversary date, so if you know you won't make the most of it for the next year, make sure to cancel it beforehand.
4. One month before your broadband, mobile and/or TV contract ends 💻 📱 📺
Almost all of these contracts work by having a promo or discounted rate for the initial period that you're locked in for, then, rather bizarrely when you're free to leave, the price is bumped up. So your provider relies on you doing nothing, and hopefully not noticing.
The good news is these are very easy to compare and switch, though you'll often need to give 30 days notice that you don't want to stick around - so perfect timing means you'll never pay the increased rates. For full help, see cheap broadband deals, cheap TV and our Cheap Mobile Finder tool.
5. One week before fixed savings mature or any easy-access bonus rate expires 💰
If you've a fixed-rate savings account, where you lock your cash away for a set period of six months to seven years, you'll want to note the date it 'matures' – the day you can access your money. If you don't act, your money will often be moved to account at an abysmal rate.
Equally, if you've an easy-access account that has a fixed bonus, this date is also important as your interest rate is certain to drop. However, as you're usually free to leave these types of accounts penalty-free whenever, and as rates have significantly risen over the last year, you may find switching to a new account is far more lucrative anyway (see Top savings for the current top payers).
Some savings accounts can be opened online almost instantly, though some may take longer if the application relies on a postal element. You've also usually got around 14 days to fund a new fixed-rate account once it's opened, so a week or two before your current account ends should buy you about the right amount of time.
6. One month before your car breakdown and/or boiler insurance contract renews 🚘 🔥
Similar to broadband and mobile above, most breakdown policies (of the car or boiler variety) usually run for an initial 12-month contract – typically at a cheap promo rate.
If you do nothing, the contract will usually renew automatically and you'll be moved to the provider's standard, more expensive rate. Yet you're free to either ditch and switch to a new provider, or try to haggle another discount with your existing insurer. See Best boiler cover and Cheap breakdown cover for more info.
7. A few days before any subscriptions auto-renew 🎧
If you have anything you pay for monthly or on a regular basis, it can be easy to forget about it and let it bleed from your account unchallenged. So set a reminder before each payment is due to really question if you really need it, before you shell out again.
It's also worth noting that for many subscriptions, such as Amazon Prime or Netflix, you can cancel seconds after you've signed up and still enjoy the benefits until the next payment is due. This way you're in control if you want to renew it a month later, three months later or never again. See our direct debit audit guide for full help.
8. Two weeks before any loved one's birthday (or other event) 🎁
This one does have a slight MoneySaving angle as leaving gifts until the last minute can equal expensive next-day delivery costs or panic buying and opting for something over your budget, though it also helps make this list feel more well-rounded and complete.
As the old adage goes, "it's the thought that counts", and sometimes good thoughts can take time (or is that just us?). Plus, do you really need to gift a 'thing' at all? Perhaps this year you could gift your MoneySaving tips to a friend or neighbour – trust us, it's a lovely feeling.
If you're got this far, congratulations, you're now officially an organised MoneySaver! Plus you've done the hard work so you can keep this rolling year after year (as many of the dates above will likely stay the same, assuming they're on a year's contract).
Though there will be financial commitments you have that are not on our list, so do keep going to make sure everything that has an end date is on your planner.
PS: If you're in the mood for more MoneySaving, check out our full Money makeover guide.