Kylie Ofiu, Guest Blog
This week is the first week of spring and is the perfect opportunity to spring clean your finances. Too often we set and forget many things such as our insurance which can cost us a lot of money. If I left my insurance as is each year instead of comparing it would have cost me $200 this year alone, let alone the $1,500+ difference there was when I was under 25. That’s right, one year by comparing and changing just my insurance company I saved $1,500 on that bill. By reviewing your finances with the following 5 steps can save you hundreds, even thousands of dollars! This year I have saved $510 just on step one.
- Compare your providers. Compare all your bills such as car insurance, phone and electricity to see if you really are getting the best deal. You might not need everything in your contract and could downsize or switch providers for a better deal.
- Transfer any debt. If you have a credit card you are struggling to pay off, check to see if there are any interest free or low interest offers on and transfer your debt. Cancel the old card and use the interest free time to pay down your debt. Do this with any debt, personal, home and car loans too.
- Check direct debits. Sometimes we set up direct debit for bills or subscribe to offers and then forget about them. They money keeps coming out of our account whether we are still using the services or not. Go through your statements to see if you have an unnecessary direct debits coming out of your account.
- Work out a budget. A budget is a plan for your money. It doesn’t need to be complex. Write out your expenses, divide them by how often you get paid (e.g. 52 for weekly) then compare the total expenses to your income. If they are more than your income, see where you can cut back. Then stick to it! Try an online budget calculator.
- Set up automatic savings. Ask payroll at your work to direct debit savings from your pay before you even get it. This way you won’t miss it. Alternatively set up a direct debit through your online banking to transfer a set amount out the day after pay day.
It doesn’t take long to go over your finances and save yourself money. A quick comparison online and changing is all you need to save yourself money.