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I want to stop wasting money

We’re quick to point out when others are wasting money, but rarely do we use such a critical eye when considering our own spending. Here’s how to save money, not waste it.

Outta sight, outta mind

One of the most common ways we spend money without even thinking about it is through various ongoing subscriptions, large and small. This is a very clever way retailers and service providers bill customers – we forget about the payment until we renew, and then it just seems like too much hassle to cancel or shop around.

Do a stocktake of all your ongoing subscriptions, and decide which ones are providing value for money. This includes things like online media providers like Netflix, Stan & Presto, any magazine or news subscriptions, and your gym and fitness subscriptions.

You may find you can do without at least a few of them, or at the very least, calculating what you’re spending on each subscription each year may prompt you to try and negotiate a better deal. Often, companies that employ this subscription method of payment can be quite flexible when it comes to trying to keep an unsatisfied customer on board.

Banking that suits you

Often, we open accounts or take out banking products without fully understanding whether they’re a good fit for the way we use our money. Let’s put it down to a beginner’s mistake.

1. Bank Accounts

Ask yourself – how do you use your money? Do you prefer to take it all out in cash? Prefer a mix of EFTPOS and cash? Or have EFTPOS and Visa PayWave made you a card-only spender? Avoiding unnecessary fees is an easy way to pocket more of your money. If you find that you’re getting hit with transaction fees, consider an account that allows unlimited EFTPOS transactions when you deposit a set amount into the account per month.

Ultimate Access Account

2. Credit Cards

Credit Cards can be a really useful tool when cash flow is low, provided they’re managed and budgeted for effectively. However, if you’re unsatisfied with your high interest rate, or you’re getting slugged with a hefty annual fee just to access a rewards scheme that does anything but, it might be time to simplify your credit card. Here’s how we can help.

Spend more mindfully

In an age of digital payments, where transacting can be done with a swipe, we may find ourselves forming habits as a result of being disconnected with our actual, physical money. Thinking about each purchase before we commit, no matter how big or small, can be an easy way to save money in the long run.

1. Grocery budget

Many of us shop day to day, or even worse, shop hungry. This is a sure-fire way to spend more on groceries than you need to. Making yourself a list ahead of time, planning your meals out for the week, and setting yourself a budget ceiling for your grocery spend will allow you to keep more in your pocket, and will develop a keen sense of value.

2. Big purchases

When it comes to bigger spends, like new appliances, clothing and even used cars, often we’ll return to our favourite retailer without a second thought. You owe it to yourself to shop around – head online and search for the product you’re after. You’ll most likely find the same item for less, in a location you may not have considered. What’s more, you might even be able to buy online, saving yourself time trekking out to the shops. Head to your app store and check out Groupon, Scoopon, Catch of the Day, ShopFully, OurDeal, Wish, and travel sites like Wotif and Skyscanner.

3. Don't cut corners

In a pinch, convenience usually wins out over savings. We don’t think about paying an extra $2 for milk at the 24-hour convenience store, or paying $50 or more to have our car washed for us. These little spends add up, and can hurt your ability to save. If you’re serious about not wasting money, go the extra mile, and pocket the savings.

Save on essentials

There are some things that are so necessary to our lives that they account for a large portion of the money we spend. Things like our home loan, our insurance, our electricity/gas and our phone/data. However, just because we rely on having these services doesn’t mean we can’t make sure we’re getting the best deal.

1. Energy & Telco

There’s no doubt these two markets have become more competitive in recent years. With more disrupters entering the market, the option is open to us as customers to play the field. If you’re doing everything in your power as a customer to keep costs down, and still feel like you’re paying too much, first get in touch with your provider to see if they can do a better deal, but if they can’t, give a competitor a call and see how much they can save you.

2. Insurance

It’s usually something we only think about once a year at renewal time, and our Home and Contents and Motor Insurance isn’t exactly something we can do without. While many of us experience bill shock, few of us actually follow through and do something about it. It’s important to make sure you’re with a reputable and reliable insurer, but if you can pick up a considerable saving, so much the better. See how much you may be able to save through our partner, Allianz.

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