It doesn’t matter what time of year it is, getting control of your finances is important so you should keep track of your spending all year round. Follow some of these simple money saving tips to keep your finances on track and reduce your debt and spending.
- Create a Budget:
A lot of people procrastinate when it comes to organising or creating a budget. Either because it falls into the “too hard basket” or they simply just do not want to know how much debt they are in. But having a clear budget and sticking to it, is the first step in getting your finances in check. Allocate how much money needs to go towards bills, loans, credit cards, petrol, food and any other living expenses. Also, put money aside for savings and general spending. Once you have completed a budget, you will be able to see where you stand financially and adjust your spending accordingly.
- Save Money on Bills:
Review your current providers for your gas, electricity, internet, insurance etc. and review what you are paying for. Are you paying for things you don’t need? Do you pay for a lot of data on your phone that you don’t use, or pay a large amount for car insurance when you don’t drive your car much? A lot of people stay with the one provider out of convenience, but switching to a different provider that gives you lower repayments or even discounts for paying on time, will save you money in the long run.
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- Loans and Banking:
Consolidating your credit cards/loans into one loan will lower your repayments and help you manage the debt better. This may also even help you pay off your debts quicker. Also, look into your bank’s fees. Can you switch to a different account with your current bank, or change banks completely to lower your annual fees or interest on your credit cards? Does your current bank have a savings account or is it better to swap to a different bank for a savings account with better interest? Researching your finance options is a great way to assist you in your money saving efforts.
- Food and Shopping:
Pre-planning what meals you cook and creating a shopping list will help reduce your spending at the supermarket. Making budget meals like spaghetti bolognese, soup, stews and casseroles can be made with low-cost ingredients. Meals like these can also be cooked in bulk and can be frozen for meals later in the week. Also, don’t be afraid to purchase home brand ingredients. Purchasing home brand staple ingredients like pasta, bread and cheese, will help your hip pocket and are often the same quality as name brand ingredients. Buying items less often in bulk, rather than purchasing smaller items more often, can save you money. It can seem like you are spending a lot at once by buying in bulk but you end up spending less in the long run. You can also save on petrol by using fuel vouchers or filling up when petrol is cheap.
- Save at Home:
There are lots of small things you can do at home to save money on your gas and electricity. Things that can help you save at home; turning the lights off when you leave a room, turning the heating or air-conditioning on low or even turn off if you don’t really need it. Also, close doors to heat/cool only the rooms you are using.
Review your current memberships. Whether you have Foxtel or an unused gym membership, weigh up how much time you spend using these subscriptions and if you really need to be paying money for something you aren’t using.
There are lots of other ways to save money but having a plan and making these simple changes, is a good start to saving money and getting control of your finances.
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