New year, new you, right?
It’s that time of year again when we all promise ourselves that this time, we’re really, really going to kick that bad habit we’ve been nursing for years. Whether it’s smoking, an overindulgence in booze, or our daily coffee fix, we’ve all got our favourite vice.
But your bad habit could be costing you thousands of dollars every year, and here at Mozo, we love nothing more than finding ways to save Aussies money. So in case you need some motivation to become a better you this year, we’ve collected some of the most common, well-meaning promises we make ourselves – and worked out how much you could save if you actually manage to stick to them in 2016.
1. Quit smoking
We’ve all heard the health warnings and seen the graphic packaging. Smoking is undoubtedly bad for your health. But if that hasn’t stopped you yet, maybe a blow to the hip pocket will – as a pack a day smoker, you’ll burn your way through just over $9,000 in a year. Quitting means a substantial saving, and comes in as the most profitable promise to keep to yourself this year.
Potential savings: $9,125
2. Ban the booze
A drink or two on a scorching afternoon is a national pastime for Aussies. But if you’re indulging a little too much or a little too often, you could be paying for it with more than just a headache.
If you’re a beer drinker, you can save around $4,000 this year by staying home two nights a week instead of going out for 5 schooners. For wine drinkers it’s even more, coming in closer to $5,000 for 5 glasses of sav blanc. And of course, that’s including the 2am kebab before you tumble into the taxi.
Potential savings: $4,056 – $5,096
3. Cut back on coffee
Ahh, coffee. The socially acceptable addiction. The thing that lets both students and office workers alike get through the day. A morning coffee has become pretty standard for most people.
But if you’re willing to give up your daily caffeine hit, you could save up to $864 this year. Besides, we’ve heard an apple is just as good at waking you up.
Potential savings: $864
4. Eat less junk food
Another good reason to swap your coffee for an apple – cutting out impulse-buy junk food and replacing it with fruit or muesli bars from home might save you up to $1,248 this year. If you’ve got the fortitude to forgo takeout Chinese in favour of a homemade stir fry, and then take the leftovers to work for lunch the next day, not only will your body thank you, but so will your wallet, saving you up to $2,760.
If you’re struggling to get rid of takeout for good, check out our tips on healthy takeout that won’t blow your budget.
Potential savings: $4,008
5. Combine socialising and exercise
What do you do when you spend time with your friends? You go for a meal, or grab a coffee, or maybe a cocktail. We tend to indulge in our bad habits when we’re out socialising. By cutting down on these aspects of your social life and replacing them with exercise, you can save around $2,000. Plus, you and your friends will soon be healthier, happier people (the first time you suggest a social hiking trip, your friends may think you’ve lost your mind. But they’ll thank you later.)
Potential savings: $2,309
6. Pay off credit card debt
If you racked up a bit of credit card debt over Christmas one of your 2016 promises might be to pay it all off before the next gift giving season. It might seem counterintuitive to pay off a debt in order to keep money in your pocket, but here’s how we see it at Mozo: with the average credit card debt of $4,299, you can switch to a balance transfer card with a minimum 12 month interest free period and pay off $83 per week. By the end of the year, your credit card debt will be gone, you could save up to $748 in interest, and you’ll be ready to go for next Christmas.
Take a look at Mozo’s credit card comparison page for more information.
Potential savings: $748
Total potential savings for 2016: $22,150
So what are you waiting for? There’s no time like the present to bust those bad habits and save yourself a load of cash while you’re at it. Head over to our savings account section to find the best place to park all your hard earned savings and let us know in the comments what bad habit you’re giving up this year!