It’s the little changes that make the biggest difference.
With inflation increasing and fears the cost of living rising more, people are worried about how to save money.
We’ve shopped around and discovered that your family can save up to $5,308.96 per month by changing your habits.
If you have a great savings tip to share, let us know below for your chance to win $400 in Woolworths vouchers.
1. Look for high yield interest rates
There are several comparison websites – Canstar, Finder and RateCity, which all offer the ability to compare interest rates so you can find an account that has the highest savings.
According to Canstar, if you had $10,000 in a savings account and deposited your money in a Suncorp FlexiRate 12 month Notice account with a 2.00% base interest rate you would earn $16.67 interest.
This compares with a Bank of Sydney Saver account with an interest rate of 0.55%, which would only net you an income of $2.29 per month.
That means that by shopping around for the best banks you could increase your monthly earnings on savings by $14.38 per month.
2. Consolidate debts
If you owe $10,000 in an unsecured loan with Commonwealth Bank, your monthly repayments would be $274.80 but a Finder comparison shows that if you switched to a Now Finance No Fee Unsecured Personal Loan your monthly repayments would drop to $234.62.
That would save you $40.18 per month.
3. Change your mobile phone plan
The Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max 1TB Extra Large would cost $339.91 with Telstra and you would have access to 180GB per billing period on a 12 month contract.
The cheapest plan on the market is $36 sold by Telechoice but on the Telstra network. The plan includes 5GB of data over a 24 month contract so you’ll need to workout how much data you want to use each month to determine if it is going to be economical for you.
By switching providers you will save a massive $303.91 per month.
4. Rethink your housing needs
Renting a four-bedroom house in Lidcombe would cost $800 per week but if you moved a little bit further out to St Mary’s and lived in a duplex you could spend only $470 per week which would save you $330 per week or $1,430 per month.
5. Make a list before shopping
The Organised Housewife says that research shows that you can save 25-30 per cent per week on your grocery bill by taking a list with you when you go shopping.
The average Australian household spends about $180 on groceries, so if you saved 25-30 per cent you could cut that down to $126, which is a savings of $54 per week or $234 per month.
6. Buy your groceries online
In March this year, ING published some research which shows that the average Australian shopper could save $1,369 per year, or $114.08 monthly doing their grocery shopping online.
You can also save time by shopping online. Around 31 per cent said that shopping online helped them avoid impulse purchases and 58 per cent did so to avoid the crowds.
7. Sign up to a meal kit subscription
Shopping online is not the only way to save money. Around 22 per cent of those surveyed by ING said that they had signed up to a meal kit subscription.
Over three quarters (76 per cent) did so to save money, with the average savings buying meal kits compared to traditional grocery shopping amounting to $1,503 per year or $125.25 per month.
8. Borrow from friends or family when you can
The average Australian spends $320 per year of their own money on clothes. That is just for work. Mamamia asked women earlier this year how much they spend on clothes and the average figure was anywhere from zero a month to $2,000 a month but the average was around $300 to $500.
Instead of buying new clothes each month you could hold swap parties with your friends where you bring along a few items from your wardrobe and everyone else does and you exchange them.
If you need a new lawnmower then instead of buying a new one which could cost you anywhere from $281.95 on Catch.com.au to $950 for a MoeBot robotic lawnmower you could ask your neighbours if you could borrow theirs for a couple of hours.
The savings here vary but could be up to $3,000 annually or $250 a month.
9. Join clubs to take advantage of discounts
Discount supermarket Costco charges an individual membership fee of $60 per year. Both Canstar and CHOICE said Costco can be worth it if you buy in bulk or have a large household to buy for.
But they said some items are not cheaper at Costco. No specific savings were mentioned, but Canstar advised against buying perishables in bulk because they would likely expire before you had a chance to use them.
Online retailers like Catch.com.au and Ebay have membership options where you can pay an annual fee and receive free shipping. The cost for a Catch.com.au membership is $40 per year.
An eBay annual membership costs $49 and you can get free express metro delivery on millions of eBay plus items and monthly $5 eBay vouchers. If you order monthly with average shipping of $9.95 then you will save a minimum of $6 per month on each site. If you took advantage of the free shipping on both sites you would save $12 per month.
10. Ditch the car
Although owning a car is convenient, running costs can be extremely expensive. Savvy Finance published research in March that said that the average cost of running a car in Australia each year was $13,782 or $1148.50 per month.
If you switched to public transport in Sydney you would only pay a maximum of $16.30 per day or $50 per week. That means your transport costs decrease to $2,600 annually and $216.66 per month which gives you savings of $931.84.
11. Switch internet providers
The most expensive internet plan on the market is an Activ8me NBN Sky Muster Plus 300 plan which comes with 300GB and costs $199.95 per month.
Tangerine NBN Standard charges just $44.90 per month for unlimited data with no minimum contract saving you $155.05 monthly.
12. Change home and contents insurers
Comparison website, Finder.com.au compared different insurance providers in Australia last December and found that the most expensive home and contents insurance was offered by Virgin Money.
The policy had different conditions. If the property was worth less than $500,000 then the monthly insurance premium was $157.56. The cheapest provider was Westpac with a monthly premium of $115.65.
If the property was valued at over $1 million then the most expensive insurance provider on the market was Suncorp with a monthly rate of $292 per month. The cheapest was NRMA Insurance with a monthly premium of $121.61.
The monthly insurance savings are up to $170.39.
13. Change health insurers
Everyone’s health needs are different so the cheapest health insurance is not always the best. But if you are looking for a health insurer based on price, Medibank Gold Ultra Health Cover costs $399.57 and includes hospital and extras.
The cheapest comparable insurance policy is HCF’s Hospital Premium Gold $250 Excess plus HCF Vital Extras which costs only $296.89 per month.
Your total savings would be $102.68 per month.
14. Switch to a lower rate mortgage
The interest rate on a $500,000 mortgage offered by Zip is 3 per cent, with monthly repayments of $2102.63. The cheapest option available is a 2.10 per cent Live-in Variable P&I loan offered by Tic:Toc and has a monthly repayment of $1,870.69.
The savings by switching to a cheaper mortgage provider are $231.94.
15. Switch to a no-interest credit card/loan
According to Canstar, several credit cards on the market come with an interest rate of 13.99 per cent interest but can be as high as 20.24 per cent but if you pay the balance off in full within 45 days you will not pay any interest.
The annual credit card fee is typically $55. Your interest costs if you did not take advantage of the interest free period would be $404.80 annually on a balance of $2,000, or $33.73 per month.
Bendigo Bank however offers a Low Rate Mastercard with 0% interest for 20 months and then 11.99% and has an annual fee of only $45 so you would save the full $33.73 each month.
16. Rather than using a credit card look at other borrowing options
If you have to borrow money because you need a few extra weeks to pay things off, rather than using a credit card or a personal loan, look at pay advances or buy now pay later.
As long as you pay the balance on time you will not pay any fees and you’ll generally have twice as long – or even more – to pay it off before interest comes in compared to a traditional credit card.
Afterpay does not charge any annual fees. Zip Pay charges a monthly fee of $7.95, so if you chose Zip Pay over a credit card you would save $25.78 per month.
17. Cancel unused subscriptions
According to Savings.com.au, Australians spend $200 a year on unused subscriptions. If you cancelled those subscriptions you would save $16.67 per month.
18. Switch supermarkets
Frugal and Thriving conducted some research on how much consumers can save by switching supermarkets. They found that most survey respondents were able to save $400 a year, which equates to $33.33 per month.
19. Don’t buy anything
Home Loan Experts has a calculator on their website that shows that the average family of four in NSW spends $3,780 for a moderate lifestyle and just $2700 for a basic lifestyle, which indicates discretionary spending of $1,080 per month.
If you lived a basic lifestyle and did not spend on anything outside of your essential costs, your savings could be $1,080 per month. Home Loan Experts did not breakdown the difference between a basic and a moderate lifestyle.
20. Switch to a cheaper credit card
In addition to saving $10 per year, you can also save money on your purchases. If you spent $2,000 per year and did not pay the credit card off within the interest-free period your interest cost would be $239.80 or $19.98 monthly.
The monthly savings by switching to a cheaper credit card is $13.75.
Have a savings tip we’ve not yet mentioned?
We’re giving away a $400 Woolworths voucher to one lucky saver.
Let us know your best savings tip and you can win a month’s worth of groceries!