Committed to having more in your bank some money this year? Don’t work harder, just buy smarter.
Lucky for us, there’s a bunch of websites and apps that are making it easier than ever!
1. Download a finance app
Sitting down to do a budget might not be your ideal way to spend a Saturday afternoon, but if you’re really serious about saving money, it’s vital you review and track your progress. Even if you’re not a ‘numbers person’ there’s a plethora of apps out there that make it child’s play.
Intuit’s Mint gives you a real real-time, complete look into all of your finances, from bank accounts and credit cards to student loans. It automatically tracks your spending, categorises it, and alerts you when/if you approach your budget limit. You can even ask for custom savings tips within the app.
Everything is shown in simple, intuitive graphs and charts, making it one of the most popular personal finance apps in the world.
2. Travel smart
Are you already planning your mid-year break? The best way to getting the best price is to book as early as possible, but there are also plenty of comparison websites and apps that can help you get the best deal. Check out Booking Buddy - it will compare travel costs from all the best booking sites so you get the best deal possible.
And instead of booking that expensive hotel, save cash by renting a room or home from a local through AirBnB.
If you want to book a tour guide, try Vayable – it puts you in touch with local residents willing to show you around instead.
3. Cut down your commuting expenses
If you’re spending a fortune on petrol and parking on your daily commute, check out Car Pool One – is a free service that helps you find people with similar travel needs and create carpools. Be the driver or look for someone to pick you up.
4. Get it for free
Freecycle is a genius site that allows you to give and receive free goods locally to keep stuff out of landfill. Go there for everything from clothes to furniture to building supplies and anything else you can think of.
5. Get sharing
If you know you’re only going to use that expensive power drill or sander a few times, instead of buying it outright, consider joining a product and service sharing site as Open Shed,
6. Shop around your mortgage
We hear this one over and over, but a few hours of work on your part can save you thousands. There are plenty of mortgage comparison sites out there, but your first port of call should be your bank. Ask for a discount on your mortgage interest rate or tell that you’re thinking about switching loans. It’s a competitive market out there and you might be surprised at what your bank may be willing to offer to keep your business.
7. Wait 48 hours before you click buy
Shopping online can be a great way to save money – but with that convenience, comes a lot of impulse spending. A good rule of thumb is to always wait 48 hours before spending money on things that cost more than a certain amount. That way, you’ll be able to identify whether that item was more of a "want" than a "need."
8. DIY your own beauty treatments
The plethora of serums, potions and concoctions we use for our beauty needs can really add up. Not only are many of these products packed with chemicals and nasties, you're often just paying for packaging and clever marketing. Why not use a site like Pinterest to learn how to make your own skin care treatments? Often you can find a DIY organic option using common household or kitchen products that are a fraction of the cost.
9. Sell your stuff online
Think: eBay, Gumtree, Amazon, Buy, Sell or Swap groups on Facebook - there’s no lack of sites out there to help you sell your unwanted stuff and get some cash! Take some time to take good quality photos.
10. Have fun for cheap
11. Get creative with gifts
It’s the thought that counts right? There are so many ways to express your love to friends and family members without buying an expensive gift. It could be a handwritten note explaining why you love them, a gift voucher for a ‘service’ you can provide such as baby sitting or a home cooked meal. Pinterest once again is your port of call for endless options!
12. Rent that expensive dress
It makes no sense to spend thousands on a dress you’ll only wear once, but that doesn’t mean you can’t wear some seriously slick designer duds for the big event. Designer rental sites have exploded in popularity, and you can also rent your own gear to make some coin. Try Her Wardrobe, Your Closet or Hiring Wardrobe are our favourites.
What’s your favourite website to help save money? Let us know by commenting below.