When I was little my mum used to layby all our big purchases and any little luxuries she wanted for herself. She didn’t have a credit card and we didn’t have a lot of money, so the big things were meticulously planned and budgeted for, paid off every fortnight over weeks, or sometimes months.
Layby was how we afforded expensive new school shoes, kitchen appliances and every now and then a nice dress for mum, who rarely had new things.
I thought it was genius. You could reserve the thing you wanted, pay it off at your own pace and collect it debt free at the end.
"We didn’t have a lot of money, so the big things were meticulously planned." Image: iStock.
I am a terrible, terrible saver. I’m just hopeless at it, and so the enforced discipline of layby suits me so well. This has always been a problem for me when it comes to holiday planning. As I scrimp and save and try not to spend my pay check on another round of drinks at the bar, I find myself wishing I could layby my holidays.
A few years ago I wanted to visit my Dad in London for Christmas. I had a plan to surprise him and was desperately trying to pull the whole thing together. But as I piled my savings up each payday I watched the price of tickets rise and rise and rise. In the end, by the time I had enough money to buy a ticket, I was shelling out hundreds more than I would have if I’d been able to reserve the ticket earlier.