Budgeting, saving, and paying off your debts can be difficult, but if your daily expenses are out of control, these things can become almost impossible. It’s important to make sure you’re doing all you can to control your spending and get the most out of your paycheque.
To help you get started, we’ve assembled our top five ideas for reducing your day-to-day spend.
Keep a Spending Diary
Keeping a log of all your spending makes you conscious of every cent you part with. Keep a small notepad in your bag or somewhere handy to you and write down everything you spend money on from day to day. This is a great way to be more aware of your spending habits and it allows you to easily identify any bad habits and room for improvement.
Doing your shopping online can help you save money in a few ways. Firstly, online shops have far fewer overhead costs and are often able to offer better prices on many goods.
Secondly, shopping online can often reduce the temptation to impulse buy, especially when grocery shopping, as you’re not walking past shelves of enticing goodies to add to your basket. You can see everything online but the items you don’t need are far less appealing than in person.
Shopping online is also beneficial to your bank account in that you can see the totals before you reach the checkout, making it much easier to spend inside a budget. It’s also much easier to do price comparisons with everything on one screen, and many online shops have the option to sort items by price, making it easy to seek out the best deals.
Don’t Carry Cash
When you’re sticking to a budget it’s often the small costs that go unnoticed, but they add up. If you don’t carry cash with you it’s more difficult to spend on incidentals here and there. A lot of places actually have minimum spends for using EFTPOS too, so that candy bar or scratchie that you don’t really need becomes harder to get.
Combine Your Debt Repayments
Debt consolidation means taking out a new loan to repay your existing personal debts, thus replacing all your high-interest repayments with one monthly instalment, usually at a lower interest rate. This means a better deal for you and savings in the long run. Having only one repayment instead of several throughout the month will also mean less forgotten or late payments and, as a result, no more forking out for late fees. Ideally you’ll also be spending less on interest. Getting your debt in order will mean putting a dent in your daily expenses that will really add up over time.
Haggle for a Deal
Call up service providers that cost you a fair bit of money, like your insurance company or Telco, and make sure you’re getting the best deal that they can give you. The best way to do this is to shop around for better prices, get cheaper quotes, then let your company know that you’ve found a better deal and ask what they can do to keep you, whether it’s by matching or beating the price or maybe offering you something like additional services or other perks.
Saving money doesn’t have to be a complex system of money-juggling. These are just five simple ways to save money on your day-to-day expenses, but don’t stop at five, there’s plenty more room for reducing your daily spend. Be creative, do your research, and never hesitate to ask for help.
Katie is a Personal Finance Writer from Brisbane, Australia. She says that combing your debts is a great way to save on your weekly loan repayments and recommends talking to the professionals at Fox Symes for more information.
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