Ah, the age old question: how can I save more money? Well, there are as many answers as there are people asking the question. From cutting back on bad habits to going DIY on just about any aspect of life you can name, there are plenty of schemes people have come up with for saving.
At Mozo, that’s what we do - spend all day brainstorming ways for Aussies to hold onto their hard earned dollars. Go through our blog or visit our hubs and you’ll find a treasure trove of good advice. But we know sometimes you’re pressed for time, so we’ve collected our favourite money saving strategies right here on one convenient page.
So what are you waiting for? Pick one (or a few) and start building up the cash stash of your dreams.
The building block of every good savings plan is an airtight budget! So head over to our budget calculator for a stress free way to set yourself a weekly, monthly or yearly budget. Remember to make it realistic, and if you’ve got any savings goals in mind, you can tailor your budget to meet them. If your morning coffee run is a habit you’re not likely to break, then don’t be too hard on yourself. Instead, plan for that expense in your budget so it doesn’t bite you later on. A planned expense is not a splurge, right?
Having said that… giving up your bad habits can be just the remedy an ailing bank account needs! Think about it: in the long run, a bad money habit you indulge in every day can wind up being much worse for your wallet than the occasional blowout. We’re so serious about this that we’ve even developed a vice calculator to tell you how much you could be saving by giving up your bad habit.
Don’t set yourself up to fight a losing battle. Part of being a superstar saver is knowing where to stash the money once you stop yourself from spending it. A jar in the back of your closet is not a good place, but a high interest savings account is. You’ll get a decent return on your money while still having access to it in case of an emergency.
A wallet jam-packed with coins can be annoying, and if you’re anything like us, these little pieces of shrapnel will also wind up slipped into your handbag, lost behind the couch cushions and abandoned in nooks and crannies everywhere around the house.
But the reality is, you could have a couple of hundred dollars floating around in loose change. So set yourself up a piggy bank and drop your change into it every afternoon when you come home. You’d be surprised how quickly it will add up!
There are a few reasons why this works: for starters, cash is a lot more personal than a piece of plastic. If you’ve held your savings in your hand, you’ll miss them more. Some people are also better at saving when they can see their weekly budget dwindling before their eyes.
If you’re really serious about it, try setting yourself a challenge, for example: every time you pay for something, put the loose change you get back into your piggy bank. You’ll save a few dollars each time and as your weekly cash budget drains out quicker than ever, it will probably prompt you to tighten up your spending as well.
You’ve probably heard the term ‘pay yourself first’ thrown around a bit. But what does it mean? Basically, you should consider putting savings away a planned cost, like rent or loan repayments. Decide on a wage for yourself - maybe as little as $10 a week, maybe as much as $100, depending on what your weekly expenses will allow - and then as soon as you get paid, stash that amount away in your high interest savings account. Tell yourself it's a necessary cost, make it a habit, and you’ll barely even notice the money’s gone. Then, after a few months, you’ll have a nice fat rainy day fund built up, almost without lifting a finger.
It’s not time to relax just yet! Picking your favourite savings strategy is only half the work - the other half is making sure it's still working weeks, months and even years down the track.
If you decide to give yourself a weekly cash budget and end up spending more than you did before, that’s probably not the savings strategy for you.
The main thing you’ll be looking at is obviously your savings account balance. Is it growing? Is it growing fast enough? But you also need to keep one eye on the market and ask yourself if your savings account is still the most competitive around. A small change in interest rates may not seem like much but listen to this:
If you had $5,000 in a savings account with an interest rate of 2.51%, you’ll earn just $527 in interest over 4 years. If you parked it in a better savings account with an interest rate of 3.6%, you’d earn $246 more over the four years. Just for keeping an eye on the best interest rate deals. Not bad, huh?
Found your answer? Whatever way you plan on saving money, there’s no time like the present to start. So head on over to our savings account comparison tables to find some of the best deals available on the market today.
Or, if you’re looking for a few more tips to help you save, check out our seven steps to savings heaven.