Good at haggling, but bad with cash? Omid Djalli ‘fame and fortune’.

Omid Djalili

Omid Djalili

This Sunday Time’s money section back page ‘Fame and Fortune’ profile was on comedian Omid Djalili, who’s referred to as the “Star of the Moneysupermarket adverts”…

Initially I found it tough not to picture the press office at the big comparison site, heads in hands, while reading the paper. Then again maybe it’s just part of a clever campaign positioning for them to do a money makeover later?

In the ads he berates the nation for being awful hagglers, telling people they should be more like him and use the website, yet the profile suggests it was more from the script than from the heart (read it in full here Omid Djalili Fame & Fortune)…

  • Until a year ago he had bailiffs around, though I was pleased to read he now has a direct debit to repay at least the minimum repayments on his credit cards, to avoid fines or credit impacts (though I would urge him to try the minimum repayment calculator to see the impact – then keep the direct debit but manually try and pay off more on top)
  • Then there was the fact he didn’t know he’d been contributing to a pension until his accountant told him.

Neither of those are too damaging to the Moneysupermarket message, as they’re not about best products but examples of poor financial management or low income and thankfully it seems he’s getting a handle on (and I’ve a slight suspicion it was a little tongue in cheek – can’t be sure though)

Yet there was one quote that seemed to run square on counter to the comparison message:

Are you a saver or a spender? A bit of both, even though I’m getting something pathetic like 0.5% interest on my money, I quite like leaving it in the bank and looking at it build up.”

The rate is hideous, currently you can get at least 3% in the top saving account and 3.5% in a top cash ISA too.

From a MoneySaving perspective there’s an even bigger worry though, it breaks one of the basic rules to pay off debts with savings.

I’m secretly hoping that as this blog appears in Google News, it may pop up if he searches his name, and he’ll read the info below.

Omid, the biggest thing to sort is those credit card debts. Past defaults mean you’re unlikely to have a good credit score I suspect these are costing you 18%-30% (or £180-£300 per year per £1000) while your savings are earning you 0.5% (£3 after tax per £1000).

Therefore pay off the debts with the savings account you’d be £177-£297 per £1,000 better off – lowering your debts and the commensurate interest and helping you be debt free much more quickly – if you’ve five minutes please read the pros and cons here (read repay debt with savings for full info). Best of luck with it.

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