Standing in the middle of this photograph is a blogger called Skint Dad. Even if you haven’t heard of him before, trust me: you’ll be hearing about him again in the future. Why? He has just been named as the Savoo Smartest Shopper 2013: the annual competition with a stonking first prize of TEN THOUSAND POUNDS.
(As one wag remarked on Twitter earlier, Skint Dad will have to change his Twitter handle to @notsoskintdad.)
Once again, I traveled down to London to help interview the finalists: there I am, alongside three tip-top money-saving bloggers and writers: A Thrifty Mrs, Marc Lockley from the Guardian, and last year’s winner Savvy Annie.
There were 10 finalists, all of whom had written a draft blog post about their smart shopping credentials. We interviewed all 10, like it was the personal finance or couponing version of Dragon’s Den. Only less scary (I hope). And waving heavily discounted handbags about, as opposed to Duncan Bannatyne’s big wads of cash.
Afterwards, we all sat down and debated who should win. This was a difficult job: in truth, there were a few absolutely outstanding candidates, and I am hoping to feature a number of them here over the coming weeks and months. However I think we picked a worthy winner.
So what can I tell you about Skint Dad? His real name is Ricky and he is a stay-at-home dad from Kent. For the past nine weeks, he has been writing about his family’s financial travails online. This is how an early post begins:
It’s the 17th September, still a week away from payday, all you have left is £6.20 to your name. In the cupboard there is only enough food to feed the family for three days and on top of this your one year old only has four nappies left….
What follows is a chronicle of debt-busting and Skint Dad’s new-found talent for frugal living. My favourite posts are Skint Dad’s fakeaways: cheap, homemade versions of ready meals, such as this one.
If this has whetted your appetite, take at a look at Skint Dad’s blog. The winners of this competition get a lot of help from Savoo to become blogging superstars, so that site is one to watch…
Once again, it was a privilege to be involved. Thanks to Savoo for inviting me to judge. And GO RICKY!