After an action-packed cricket season, there is an opportunity to pause, take a breath, reflect and plan.
If you’re involved with helping to run a cricket club then that may well involve goal-setting for 2022.
Amid the end-of-season awards and league dinners, thoughts inevitably turn to the financial: how are we going to afford that?
One of the points I raise in my e-course for cricket clubs, is this:
Is your club saving money, as well as making it?
The net effect is the same: the ability to fund your cricket club’s ambitions.
But with everything else to do and not nearly enough time to do it, savings can be missed.
Here’s some ideas to think about implementing and making a difference to your club bank account…
How often does your cricket club review its energy usage?
It could save you hundreds or thousands of pounds so it’s always worth the effort. It’s not something to do every few years but every 6 months.
Particularly with ridiculous, soaring energy prices.
After all, how many race nights or barbeques would you need to organise to make that kind of money?
Where do you start? As an individual or a cricket club, the problem with trying to get comparable quotes is that it can be confusing.
With the UK in the midst of an energy crisis likely to last across 2023 then every cricket club should be reviewing its current contract.
Prices are going to go up. You don’t need to have a crystal ball for that. However, your club might still be on an unnecessarily high tariff, especially if you’ve not reviewed it recently.
There are lots of price comparison websites out there but here are my recommendations…
Money Saving Expert by Martin Lewis is a superb website for all kinds of money-saving advice from phones to holidays to energy and mortgages. Their Cheap Energy Club is worth a look.
Which? is my go-to resource for independent reviews and they have energy advice and a compare and switch suppliers tool.
I’ve not been able to get a smart meter yet – which every club should try to get one installed if they can. Automatic readings mean no more estimated bills that are higher than they should be.
Pay for what you use. Also, no reliance on you checking the meter manually all the time.
The energy market is constantly changing so whoever you’re with, it’s set to be a bumpy ride in 2023 so keep a close eye on prices and deals in the next 6 months.
It might be that in the short-term, you’re better not switching as the market is volatile and generally going up.
100% renewable electricity and carbon-neutral gas in the UK is laudable – but a cricket club will be primarily thinking about price and that’s absolutely fair enough.
Shop around, use Money Saving Expert to make sure you’re not stuck on a standard tariff that isn’t the cheapest.
It’s also worth mentioning that clubs can save money in many ways around energy; like with better insulation which is probably a whole different article. Efficient boilers, retaining heat and making sure you’re not leaking money are all considerations.
Knowing your energy use is one thing – but doing something about it is something else.
It could start as a series of small measures like turning off lights, keeping in heat and instilling measures to encourage members to think about energy usage too.
Allied with that might be aiming to fund certain projects that store energy (solar panels), save water (water pump) or better insulation to retain heat.
The ECB has guidance that is worth refreshing with the Guide on Energy & Water Consumption.
I stayed with the same bank for over 20 years. The level of interest was next to nothing, they were a right pain when you did anything online and gradually closed all their branches on the high street.
Sound familiar? NatWest might be a household name in cricket but I should have moved years ago.
While clubs won’t want to move banks because it’s a hassle, it’s got to be convenient for the volunteers doing the legwork.
Cricket clubs will typically need flexible accounts where you can move money quickly and easily, multiple signatories, transparent reporting and no/minimal charges for the usual activities we all do.
In the off-season, why not do a bit of an audit of your cricket club’s banking? How has the past year been? Is your Treasurer tearing their hair out? What would you like your bank to do that it doesn’t already? Is that good enough reason to move?
Again, use a trusted website like Money Saving Expert (Banking) to get advice and check out the latest offers being touted by banks.
Typically, they might offer £££ to switch, a free overdraft and roll-in benefits like cashback on household bills.
The right online banking partner will definitely save you money, even in micro-charges that build up over time, but the big saving could be in someone’s time and peace of mind.
Ok…here’s my recommendation: Starling Bank.
They have been an absolute revelation once I got over my entrenched anxiety of a bank not having a high street branch I could physically walk in to.
Now, we’re talking current accounts here as savings and investments are a different ball game. With negligible interest, the decisions for cricket clubs are chiefly around ease – but there is money-saving to be done too.
Starling Bank introduced features as standard while other banks were grappling to understand the technology to make online banking a doddle. Things like being able to scan a cheque and it gets paid in.
The app is really easy to use, security is watertight but not impossible to navigate but best of all, you get a snapshot of how you spend instantly.
I’m not suggesting Starling will suit everyone – but check them out as part of any review.
At one point, multiple signatories was an issue but that might have changed or it might suit you personally instead.
What I like…
- No monthly fees
- Spaces – divide your account into multiple areas
- Instant notifications of payments
- Round up transactions to save in increments
- Spending categorised
If you join Starling Bank and open an account, they’ll plant a tree for us.
Just use my link above to apply for an account.
Not sure if it’ll be a willow tree but either way, it’s a referral fee the planet needs.
Direct debits are both convenient and something to watch. The flow of money in and out of a cricket club’s bank account should be automatic with no surprises.
However, subscriptions and other monthly fees your club might have set up to auto-renew could be quietly costing you.
As part of any review, take a scalpel to your monthly outgoings and see what you might have forgotten or need to make a decision on soon. Set calendar reminders to review before any deal expires.
So, there you go…a few ideas for saving money that will make an impact as your cricket club plans ahead.
Here on Cricket Yorkshire, we’ll look at insurance and other ways to save and make money in future articles.
Make Money For Your Cricket Club
If you haven’t already, download Cricket Yorkshire’s free guide on How to Double Your Cricket Club Income with ideas any club of any size can put in play.
If your club wants to grow financially over the next year and beyond, then my e-course called Make Money For Your Cricket Club is an enjoyable way to learn at your own pace.
It covers 4 modules with short video lessons: Membership, Sponsorship, Events & Fundraising, Grants & Funding
Here are Cricket Yorkshire’s Cricket Club Online Modules to unlock your club’s potential.
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