Are you making the most of your savings, or is the thought of putting some money aside each month little more than a pipe dream?

According to new research, you’re not alone.

One in four UK adults have no idea where to put their savings or think it won't make a difference where they put them.

A further one in 10 say knowing where to put their money is irrelevant, as they haven't got any to save anyway. 

Santander’s study of savings trends found that 12m Brits are missing out on the benefits of long-term saving.

Of those that do manage to save, the average amount put away each month is £120 – around a quarter of people’s disposable income. 

Almost a quarter (23%) save less than 10% of their disposable income and 26% – or 13m UK adults – say they wish they could save more regularly.

Nearly one in five (18%) admit they don’t save anything in the average month.

For 49% of respondents, the thing that would help them most to save is being paid more. 22% said having better discipline and commitment to saving would be the most helpful factor.

It’s never too late to start saving – even if it’s just a small amount each month

Helen Bierton, head of savings, Santander
An atom of type quote lives here

Helen Bierton, head of savings at Santander, said: “While many people do have a strong understanding of savings, our study shows that there are still many more that miss out on the benefits of saving.

“Meeting the cost of everyday living can be a challenge, so the prospect of setting money aside at the same time can be daunting. 

14% of people have tried freezing their credit cards in blocks of ice in a bid to stop spending money. Image by Sonia Sorbi/Shutterstock.com

“However, saving regularly and building a savings habit is hugely beneficial in the long term. It’s never too late to start saving – even if it’s just a small amount each month.”

The study of 2,003 UK adults, which took place in February, found that 61% had been left shocked when checking their bank balance. 

And for 8% of respondents, this happens every time they look at their account. 

The research also looked at ways people had avoided spending money. 36% said they avoid shops, 32% cut back on socialising and 24% did fewer leisure activities.

People also tried cancelling all their cards (19%), freezing cards in a block of ice (14%) and giving themselves a weekly cash allowance (32%).