Shopping around for the best deal can improve Brits' "financial fitness"

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Consumers can improve their "financial fitness" by shopping around for the best mortgage, credit card and insurance deals, according to Abbey.

Nici Audhlam-Gardiner, head of mortgages for the bank, said that if people spend time reviewing their finances they will see a "big difference" in the amount of money they pay out each year.

"It's all about discipline, in the same way that you can be physically disciplined if you decide to get physically fit", she added.

Ms Audhlam-Gardiner continued to say that if people start off by devoting an hour each week to their personal finances they could "really stay on top of their finances".

Research conducted by ICM on behalf of Abbey showed that 16 per cent of credit card owners carry a balance on their card charged at the lenders standard rate, while 21 per cent of respondents admitted to not shopping around for their home insurance.

The research also revealed that just 34 per cent of the population have enough savings to be able to maintain their current standard of living for three months.

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