Discover some pain-free ways to save.

Are you eager to collect more cash for your next big adventure? Maybe you’re buying your first home or wedding bells are ringing? How can you ramp up your bank balance faster? Sure, you’d save if you took your lunch to work every day and only ever made coffee at home or in the office, but always being super frugal can get old fast. The best savings strategies are those that cut out spending where it won’t sting, leaving you with more money for both your big goals and good times. Because life’s too short for instant coffee and soggy sandwiches.

 

Make a call

According to research by comparison site Mozo [1], 7 out of 10 home loan borrowers who ask their lender for a better interest rate receive one. This can represent savings of as much as $1200 a year or $36,000 over the life of a 30-year loan – all from making one phone call. Apply this strategy to your other major bills too. Call your current providers (think internet, phone, energy) and ask for a better deal. Research their competitors first to see if there’s a specific offer you could ask them to price match. Likewise, health insurance and car insurance providers will often offer you a sweetener, such as a discount or a month for free, to prevent you from switching. It’s also worth exploring whether you could stand to save by switching savings accounts.


Eat out for less

Sometimes there is such a thing as a free lunch or at least a very good discount. Coffee and lunch ordering apps such as Hey You (heyyou.com.au) and Skip (skip.com.au) offer regular deals and discounts, including free loyalty reward coffees, so sign up. Some online restaurant booking sites, such as The Fork (thefork.com.au), offer excellent dining deals of as much as 50% off meals. Coupon sites like Groupon (groupon.com.au) can be worth a look too, particularly if you’re seeking deals on group dining.

 

Conserve your energy

According to Energy Australia [2], so-called ‘stand by’ power, when your electronics are powered down but still turned on at the wall socket, can account for as much as 10% of your bill. Make a routine of switching off all major appliances before bed or when you leave for work for the day and certainly if you’re heading off on holiday to save potentially hundreds of dollars each year. Common energy suckers include computers, televisions, washers and dryers, dishwashers and stereos.

 

Delay gratification

Australia Post’s 2018 report on the state of eCommerce [3]  revealed that we’re now spending over $21 billion each year shopping online. Just like bricks and mortar stores have their sneaky ways to make us spend more – chocolate positioned near the check out, “final” sales signs – so online retailers try to trick us into extra impulse spending with time-limited sales or minimum sales amounts for free shipping. Make a new rule that if something costs more than $100, you’ll always wait  24 hours before purchasing it – 48 hours if it’s over $200. You’ll be surprised at just how often that new dress or pair of shoes suddenly seems less essential. Also, always do your research and shop around before being sucked in by discount days like Black Friday or Cyber Monday to make sure ‘sales’ actually represent good value.


Do a money detox

You know about 5:2, right? The intermittent fasting diet where you dramatically restrict calories on two days of the week and eat whatever you like the other five. The same principle can be applied to your finances. Pick a day or two a week where you commit to making no purchases whatsoever that aren’t absolutely necessary. Just like with dieting, so long as you aren’t wildly overindulging on the other days of the week, this simple strategy can add up to big savings without leaving you feeling unduly deprived.

 

Knowing your credit score is another key part of staying on top of your finances. Your credit score rates your current financial potential, so you know better where you stand as a loan or credit risk. Make it a habit to monitor your credit score for FREE regularly to keep a track of your financial potential.

 

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is general in nature and does not take into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs. Therefore, you should consider whether the information is appropriate to your circumstance before acting on it, and where appropriate, seek professional advice from a finance professional such as an adviser.

 

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[1] Mozo Media Release: Borrowers Could Save Over $1,200 a Year with One Conversion

https://stat.mozo.com.au/images/more-on-mozo/media-releases/MOZO-MEDIA-RELEASE-mozo-media-release-borrowers-could-save-over--1-200-a-year-with-one-conversation-final.pdf

 

[2] Energy Australia blog: How Standby Power is Affecting Your Bill

https://www.energyaustralia.com.au/blog/better-energy/how-standby-power-affecting-your-bill

 

[3] Australia Post 2018 eCommerce Industry Paper: Inside Australian Online Shopping

https://auspost.com.au/content/dam/auspost_corp/media/documents/2018-ecommerce-industry-paper-inside-australian-online-shopping.pdf