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Saturday, March 2, 2019

How to Be Money Smart in 2019

A few months into the new year, and hopefully if you had finance related resolutions, hopefully you've managed to stick to them. If not, here's some more ideas from a reader how you can be money smart this year; its never too late to implement.



The cost of living is on the rise and, for many people, this means money is tight. Regardless of your financial situation, having more money in the bank (and your pocket) is never a bad thing. A new year is always a great time to make some changes, so why not create goals which will positively impact your budget? Here are a few simple ways to be money smart this year.

Save Your Spare Change

Being mindful of your spending is the first step to making financial changes. Those little things add up, and $5 here and there for a coffee doesn't sound like much, but do this 10 times a week and there goes $50. If you get yourself a KeepCup and make your own coffee, the money can stay in your account and earn interest. Other ways to save your spare change could include taking a packed lunch, buying second-hand goods, swapping processed drinks with water and making the most of genuine specials. Even something as simple as stretching your hair appointment from 4 weeks to 6 will save you money over the course of a year.


Be Prepared for The Unpredictable

Life can be unpredictable, and having measures in place for the unexpected could prevent a massive financial outlay in the future. Insurance is designed to protect you in different scenarios, whether it is for your health, home, or travel. In addition, an extended warranty on your car or other large purchases can be a worthwhile investment. The small cost in the short term could be well worth it in the long term.

Reduce Your Debt

Debt is one of the biggest financial burdens you can have and may even have an impact on your credit rating. This could affect your ability to purchase a home, and meeting the credit card repayments can be stressful. One strategy is to consolidate your credit cards into one easy repayment. This can save you on fees and make it easier to manage. Look back on your budget to find areas where you can save, and use the extra dollars to hit your debt. When you reduce your debt you will put yourself in a better financial position.

Examine Your Living Expenses

We all have bills coming in, but how closely do you examine what you are being charged for? Now is the time to search for a better deal on your utilities, you might be surprised by how much money you can save when you shop around. Sustainable options such as solar panels, water tanks, and batteries could all be an option if you already own your own home. Be conscious of your water and power usage, have shorter showers and turn off appliances when not in use. When purchasing new products look for energy efficient brands. Changing your habits doesn't take much effort and could reduce your bills each month.

The Final Word

Being money smart doesn't have to be difficult, and the way you save will depend on your personal circumstance. Change your attitude and ask yourself, do I really need this? This doesn't mean you shouldn't treat yourself, but make it occasional rather than every day. If you are money smart you will learn to trade expensive items for cheaper ones. For example, you could travel locally and discover something new in your neighborhood rather than an overseas adventure. Keep an eye on your budget, reduce your spending, and have the right insurance and extended warranties!

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