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We could all use a bit more cash in our pocket, right? There are some things you can do TODAY that will set you on course for reducing your outgoings and retain some money for other things. Do just one right now!
1. Review your credit card bills
This is something I do when I am feeling the pinch, but it’s something I should do far more regularly. The thing is, it’s SO EASY to subscribe to a regular purchase of a service and then forget all about it. Know what I mean? The main culprits are online service subscriptions. Are you still needing them? Could you live without them? If you have forgotten all about them, that answer is staring you in the face.
2. Review bank statements
Similarly, are you totally in control of what is leaving your bank account? Last time I did this I found 3 services that were pillaging my bank every month that I just wasn’t using, totalling $121! I was paying for services I wasn’t using at all. It’s outrageous now I think about it. Could you be doing the same?
3. Review utility services
The price of utility services has skyrocketed in the last few years. What seemed like a great deal 3 years ago might not be so good now. I must admit that only apathy stopped me switching providers to more cost-effective schemes. For example, I found I could save $45 per month by switching energy supplies to a single provider.
4. Review entertainment services
I can be greedy and lazy. I like to have them all. I had subscriptions on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Apple TV+, Disney and a few others. On top of my satellite TV provider. Goes to say I was spending over $120 per month on these services. Sure, each streaming service has unique content – so the FOMO in me meant I had to have them all. But did I really need them all? No. Here’s the trick – unlike broadcast TV, we can binge-watch entire box sets in a short space of time… so why not take out a subscription only when I want to binge-watch the content from a single service? I have saved a lot of cash doing this.
5. Cancel fixed-line telephone services
Who uses a fixed-line nowadays? I didn’t use it, or was ever called on my home number. I was paying for a service that I had moved away from in favor of my mobile service. Back in the day when mobile was launched, it cost considerably more to use them, but today the cost difference is negligible, when you add in the cost of the fixed-line.
6. Switch insurer
Like me, I expect you’re bombarded with commercials about cheaper insurance. But their ads went in one ear and out of the other. It was only when I compared what I was paying for my home, motor, travel and buildings insurances did I realise that the cost had mounted up and there are cheaper alternatives. Especially when I considered I was paying for the bells-and-whistles I just didn’t need. House key replacement insurance? I have my own backup plans for that – so I canned that option. Plus many others!
7. Buy groceries in bulk
I hadn’t quite realised how much I was paying for packaging! I like to buy fresh, but when it comes to store-cupboard items there is a lot of cash to be saved from buying in bulk. Have you seen the price of a small packet of rice? Buy a mahoosive tub of it and save! You will be amazed at what you can cut off your grocery bills.
8. Do you really need that item TODAY?
Again from apathy (mostly) I was using the default shipping option to receive ordered items as quick as possible. And paying for the privilege. But I realised that for most items, I just don’t need it today or the next day. A few days will be fine! So why pay for priority shipping when it just isn’t needed?
9. Turn down the thermostat by one degree
This isn’t just good for environment – it’s good for your pocket. It’s likely you won’t miss just one degree in your central heating. I tried this and didn’t feel any difference. This is a very smart way of saving potentially hundreds of dollars. And if it does feel a bit chilly from time to time, I put a sweater on (does the job nicely.)
10. Consider energy use on every day activities
This one aimed at the energy bill too. Instead of filling the kettle to the top for just one cup, fill it just enough for one cup! Do those lights need to be on all the time? Here’s an idea – I recently installed smart light bulbs that have sensors in them that will switch the lighting off if there is no activity detected. These work great in walkways. And could you shower for one minute less? I like to dwell in the shower, like the next person does, but heating that water costs a fortune – could you get the job done in less time?