How You Can Save on Life Insurance

If you have ever applied for life insurance before then you will already be aware that life insurers ask a lot of questions and even very personal questions. These questions though serve a purpose as the life insurer will use these answers to determine the risk they take by insuring you.

Your risk profile is based on your health and lifestyle, which will determine if you can be insured and if so, what premiums you will pay, what special conditions will apply to your policy and if there is a need for extra evaluations.

So, once you have applied and you have been insured, are you able to save on your life insurance?

save on life insurance

If you already have a life insurance policy or if you are considering getting one so that your family is protected, then take a look at these tips that could help you to reduce your premiums.

How to Save on Life Insurance

Make Sure You Compare Life Insurance Quotes

As with any type of purchase, you will need to compare quotes and look at both the price and the cover that is offered. It does pay to do your homework, especially for life insurance. You should shop around and get at least three quotes from three different providers. This can easily be done through sites that allow you to fill out one application and gather a number of quotes from reputable life insurance companies on your behalf. You can then compare these and choose the one that suits your budget as well as your needs. Remember to compare both the policy benefits and features as well as the premiums.

Control Chronic Medical Conditions

The premiums that you pay for life insurance are based on risk and chronic conditions generally result in higher premiums. You could qualify for lower premiums though if you work with a healthcare provider to help you manage and monitor any chronic medical condition that you may have.

Time to Get Healthy

The healthy you are the lower your premium will be, as you are seen by the life insurer as a lesser risk. Making adjustments to your lifestyle could lower your life insurance premium. This can include things like stopping smoking, losing weight, exercise more and just to maintain a healthy lifestyle overall.

get healthy

If you have made any of these lifestyle changes, then you should speak to your life insurer. If your overall health has improved then you may qualify for a lower premium.

Keep reading…for more ways to save…

The Right Amount of Cover for Your Family

Deciding on how much life insurance you need to buy requires some thought. You need to work out what you need and make sure that you are not buying too much.

Your life insurance policy should cover costs associated with your funeral, medical bills associated with your death, any debts that you leave behind and being able to settle your estate.

If you have a family, then you will also need to factor in your family’s yearly living expenses, education, medical aid, an emergency fund and other such things that your family may need when you pass away.

What are Your Employee Benefits?

Many employees will offer a life insurance scheme and if you are part of this as well as have a personal policy, then you might find that you can reduce your personal policy.

It is a good idea to speak to a financial planner to evaluate your requirements before you make any changes to your life insurance policies.

There is No Point in Lying

You should never withhold any information from your life insurance provider as this will not help you in the long run. If you fail to disclose all medical and personal information when you apply for life insurance then you risk having a reduced or rejected claim.

Life cover is a necessity and will protect you and the ones you leave behind after your death and make up for the loss of your monthly income. You should invest in a life insurance policy so that you can be sure that you do not leave your family in terrible financial circumstances and so you are able to protect them.

Do You Know What Your Home Insurance Covers?

The insurance market is full of competition between companies, which is shown through the premiums they charge and the cover they offer. It is because of this competition that your home insurance may cover things that you didn’t know about. However, even though some things have become part of the standard cover, other things are not automatically covered by your home insurance.

Here is a look at what your home insurance may offer as part of their standard cover and some things that won’t be automatically covered.

home insurance

Did You Know Your Home Insurance Covers These?

Liability for Injury

Did you know that if a person is injured on your property, whether its inside or outside your home, they can hold you liable for the damages? Well, the good news is that your insurance company may actually cover the medical and legal fees that are involved in these claims. The same is true if your pet is to cause someone injury.

Injury to Your Pet

This may come as a surprise, but if your pet is involved in a fight with a neighbour’s dog or if your neighbour causes injury to your pet via their car, then your home insurance policy may actually cover the veterinary bills associated with these injuries or accidents. Of course, though, your home insurance will not cover any shot, sterilization or illness.

Your Food Goes Off

A benefit that has been added by insurance companies is the cover to your food and groceries due to load shedding and power outages. If your food becomes spoilt due to the lack of power then the insurer will pay out the value so that you are able to replace these items.

home insurance policy

Has Your Money Been Stolen?

This will depend on your insurance company, but quite a few are now covering stolen money, in whatever form it might be. This means that the insurer may pay out if credit cards, cheques, money guarantees and even deeds and other assets are stolen. You should check if your home insurance covers this.

Having Guests Over?

If you have guests stay over often, then you should check to see if your household contents insurance policy covers the theft or damage to your guest’s belongings like their clothes and other property. Adding this to your insurance policy can be worthwhile if you have guests over regularly as the insurance company will pay out, up to a certain amount.

Now.. let’s take a look at what your home insurance doesn’t automatically cover

Did You Know Your Home Insurance May Not Automatically Cover These?

Damage Caused by Flood

It might be surprising, but actually, most home insurance policies do not cover for flood damage. You may find that you have to add this onto your policy and it could be a vital add on if you live near water or below the flood line, but it pays for every homeowner to have this.

Same Value Replacement

You will find that most of your assets will only be insured for the replacement that is the cost it would be to replace the lost item with one of the same value. For instance, a tablet that you paid R10 000 for might only be worth R5000 in a few years, this means that the insurance value will only be R5000. Home insurance does not always include a replacement value that covers the cost and it must, otherwise, you may find that you are underinsured.

replacement value

Mouldy Home and Pesky Insects

A homeowner might be under the impression that they are able to claim for damage that is caused by termites or mould, but then find out that the insurance company doesn’t cover this damage. This is because pests and moulds are seen as a maintenance issue and failing to maintain your home can mean that your insurance claim is rejected.

It’s All Gone

It is a mistake to think that the insurance company will reimburse you for your total household contents should your entire home be lost due to an accident like fire. A home insurance policy will only cover the structure of the home and surrounding buildings, whereas a home contents insurance policy will cover the contents, even in the event of total loss.

You Can’t Live There Anymore

If your home suffers damages and the repairs mean that you are not able to live in your home, your home insurance company may put you in a hotel or alternative accommodation, only if this is stipulated in your policy. You should not assume that your policy includes this benefit.

As you can see, it is vital that you go through your home insurance policy and ensure that you understand what is and what isn’t covered. You do not want to find that you are underinsured and are not able to claim for certain things. Read the benefits of your policy and find out about any optional cover that you can include. You shouldn’t sign your contract until you know what it is you are getting and make sure that it includes the above.

5 Reasons You Need Life Insurance

Life insurance is one of those products that we often don’t pay much attention to. This is usually because we don’t really think about death or think that we are going to live forever, but this isn’t true and having a good life insurance is vital.

A life insurance policy is one that pays out a lump sum to the chosen beneficiary in the event of death. Life insurance policies range in price and the premium that you will pay will depend on the level of cover that you have chosen.

So, what is the point of life insurance? The point is to protect your loved ones from financial issues by offering them financial assistance during a difficult time. It is even more important to have life insurance if you are the only one that is earning an income as your family will be able to lead and afford the lifestyle that you have provided for them in the event of your death.

life insurance

Think about all the expenses that make up your life like grocery bills, school fees, bond repayments and such. Life insurance ensures that your family can continue to meet these financial expenses after their main source of income has gone.

Here are 5 reasons you need life insurance

Financially Protect Your Family

You will definitely need to get a life insurance policy if your family is dependent on you financially, so that they are able to afford their lifestyle. If you have children or are the sole breadwinner, then it is even more important as your life insurance policy will replace your income once you have passed and allow your family to continue the standard of living they have become accustomed to. You will also need to provide enough cover that can be used for the expenses of a growing family like school fees etc.

Leave Something Behind

If you don’t have any assets that you are able to pass on to your beneficiaries then you can create an inheritance with a life insurance policy by naming your loved ones as the beneficiaries. This is a great way for you to set your kids up with a solid financial future and to provide them with the finances they may need in the future.

Wait…keep reading…there are still important reasons below…

Don’t Let Debts Ruin Your Family

Not only do you need life insurance to cover everyday living, you will also need to provide cover for any outstanding debt that you may leave behind like credit cards, a mortgage, a car loan etc. Other expenses that you will need to provide cover for is the funeral and burial costs. The idea is then to not leave your family and loved ones with any additional financial burdens once you have passed.

pay debts

Providing for Your Children Once You Are Gone

Just like most parents, you will want to ensure that your kids are taken care of once you are gone. You will want to be able to provide a top-notch education as well as fund other life events like their wedding or a business venture. You should then opt for additional coverage whilst your children are still at home.

Sleep Better Knowing You Are Protected

There is no way of knowing when we will pass away, but we do know that it will happen. Money isn’t able to replace a person, but life insurance is able to protect your loved ones from the uncertainties in life. Having life insurance will bring both you and your family peace of mind. You will know that your family will be taken care of financially if anything were to happen to you. Life insurance can cover expenses associated with your death, debts and allows your family to carry on with their life without the worry of money.

Life insurance is then a must and is not an insurance product that we can overlook. Life insurance will protect your family financially and ensure that they are able to afford their life once you are gone. You can give your family the peace of mind they need and you will know that if anything happens, your family will not suffer financially. Compare life insurance quotes and choose the product that offers you the best premium for the level of cover that you need and know that your family is covered.

The 3 Types of Life Insurance You Can Get

With life insurance, it is important to determine the amount of coverage that you need as well as the type of life insurance that you need. There are three life insurance types to choose from in South Africa, which are term, whole and universal life insurance.

It is always a good idea to seek advice from a life insurance broker as they will be able to guide you through the types of life insurance and help you to choose the best one based on you and your family needs as well as the level of coverage that you need.

life insurance

So, let’s take a closer look at these three options.

Term Life Insurance

Term life insurance is the most affordable life insurance that you are able to get and offers cover for a set period of time that is determined before you sign for the policy. This can be a great option for those that are only looking for a short or limited cover and during major times of your life. Term life insurance policies are generally offered for 10, 15 or 20 years.

Term life insurance is just insurance and doesn’t offer the insured any other type of value once the policy has been paid off like the other two types. So, once the term has ended for the policy so will the coverage.

If the insured passes away during the term of the policy then the policy will pay out accordingly to their estate.

Whole Life Insurance

A more comprehensive type of life insurance is whole life insurance that offers a guaranteed pay out. This type of policy will have the insured pay on the policy until they die or decide to surrender the policy. This then means that the policy will start to build up a cash value as the insurer is investing these premium payments. When the insured dies, the policy will pay out to their estate.

The premiums that are paid for whole life insurance are usually higher than that of term life insurance, but with whole life insurance, once the policy has been paid for long enough it earns a cash value and the insured is able to borrow money against the policy.

Universal Life Insurance

The last type of life insurance that you are able to get is universal life insurance, which is like a whole life insurance policy with an investment option.

This means that when you pay more than what is required, i.e. more than your premium, the additional cash is invested and can start to earn interest. Universal life insurance can then create growth on this investment.

When you are looking for life insurance it is important that you compare quotes and to also get quotes on all three types of life insurances, so that you are able to make the best decision possible based on your needs. An easy way to compare life insurance quotes is to use an online service that will find you the best life insurance offers from reputable companies and allow you to compare them all at once in terms of coverage, type and premium. You are also able to seek the advice of a life insurance broker that will be able to gather you quotes.

What You Need to Know About Home Insurance

Your home is special, it is the place where you sleep, cook and socialise with family, but it is also the place where you have all your belongings. As a homeowner, you are vulnerable to property damage, theft and loss, which is why it is crucial to have home insurance so that you can rest easy knowing that your property is protected.

home insurance

Are there Different Types of Home Insurance?

Actually, there are three types of home insurance that you can consider. You will need to know what each one of these are and what they protect.

Homeowners Building Insurance

The first type of insurance is building insurance. This type of insurance covers the building structure of your home against damage or loss caused by theft, fire or natural disasters.

This type of cover can also be extended by some insurance companies to include other structures on your property like greenhouses, garages and swimming pools as well as any permanent structures around your house like toilets, fitted kitchens and baths.

There are also some insurance companies that will additionally offer Personal Liability Cover, which protects property owners from third party claims. This type of cover will offer financial protection in the case where a third party may claim against a homeowner for injury, illness or accidental death that occurs on their property as well as protection for accidental damage or loss to a third party’s property.

Home Contents Insurance

Homeowners insurance protects your structure, but it does not protect the contents of your home. You will need to get home contents insurance to protect your items.

Home contents insurance covers your household goods against loss or damage caused by fire, theft, burglary, malicious damage or natural disasters.

Your home contents insurance will protect items like home appliances, furniture, clothing, electrical goods and so on. However, fitted fixtures like taps or a carpet that can’t be moved are usually not covered by this type of insurance.

Personal Valuables Insurance

This type of insurance is a separate policy and covers personal valuables that you would usually carry or wear outside the home like jewellery, laptops, phones and so on.

You are able to get specified items and non-specified items. Non-specified items is a policy that will cover a standard list of general items and will pay out up to a certain amount in the case of damage or loss. A specified policy allows you to individually insure your most expensive items like laptops against damage or loss and will pay out up to the amount that is specified in your policy.

Wait…Home insurance is important…keep reading…

Why is Home Insurance Important

Home insurance, of course, offers you financial protection, but there are also other benefits to home insurance.

home insurance

If your house should get damaged, you are able to get the repairs done in a timely manner and will not have to wait so that you are able to save up the funds that you need.

If you suffer from an emergency covered loss, then your home insurance will offer emergency repair services in order to protect and prevent any further damage to your home.

If you are not able to live in your home due to mandatory evacuation, then your insurance policy will cover your temporary living expenses, but this will depend on whether your insurance claim is approved.

There are some insurance companies that offer a no-claims reward, which is where you will be able to get cash back after a specified number of premiums and when you haven’t claimed.

What Household Cover doesn’t Cover

You need to read and understand the terms and conditions of your cover, so that you know what you are covered against.

If you are unsure about any part of your insurance policy then it is a good idea to speak to a broker or an attorney, so that you can better understand the policy.

The majority of home insurance policies will cover a wide range of accidents, but there are some cases where your claim might be rejected.

Claims that could be rejected include:

  1. Damage occurring from pets.
  2. If you run a bed and breakfast from your home, appliances in the rooms will be excluded from household cover.
  3. Not all theft claims are covered unless violet or forcible entry on the property is visible.
  4. If there are signs of poor property maintenance which results in damage that could have been avoided.
  5. Damage to the property from roots and weeds
  6. If there is a lack of sufficient security in place at the time of your claim.
  7. If your home was left unoccupied for a significant period of time.

Home insurance is important as it offers you the financial protection that you need in the event of any unexpected circumstance. Home insurance will give you peace of mind as you know you are protected. Without home insurance, you may find that you will have to pay a lot out of your own pocket to replace items, repairs and other such things. You can then save money further down the line with home insurance if anything happens.

What To Consider Before Choosing Your Health Insurance Plan

In the event of illness or an emergency, you will want to have access to quality and private medical care, but medical aid can be extremely expensive, which is why health insurance can be invaluable in times of need. When you are looking at health insurance, there are a few things that you need to consider before you choose your health insurance plan.

health insurance

What Can You Afford

You first need to determine what you are able to afford. It is a good idea to compare health insurance plans in terms of their cost and the cover that they offer. If you are not able to afford a health insurance plan, but you know that in times of an emergency you need access to private medical aid, then you can consider taking only a hospital plan. This will give you private hospital care in the case of an emergency.

Do You Get Sick A Lot?

Think about how often you get sick and see a GP. If you don’t get ill often and don’t require too much cover for GP visits then you are able to save money by opting for a starter hospital plan. If you are looking for cover for your whole family, then you need to keep in mind that children who go to school are exposed to more germs and need a fuller cover that offers frequent doctor visits.

Even if you don’t get sick often or if you are only covering yourself, your health insurance plan will assist with x-rays, dental check-ups and other care that you may need from time to time.

Can You Visit the Doctor of Your Choice

Before you sign for a health insurance policy, you need to make sure that you are able to visit the doctor or hospital of your choice. Good health insurance plans will allow you to visit any medical practitioner whereas others may only allow you to visit specified doctors and hospitals in your area. This could mean that you will have to travel further, open new medical records with new doctors in the case of an emergency.

What Cover Are You Getting?

You will determine the amount of cover that you will receive from a health insurance plan. You should find out how much your doctor usually charges for an appointment and then compare this to what the health insurance provider pays. If there is a shortfall then you need to make sure you can afford this. If you can’t then you should consider paying a slighter higher premium for fuller claim amounts, so that you can pay less out of pocket for medical care.

What Does the Plan Cover?

You need to read every single detail of the health insurance plan before you sign. You need to know exactly what you are covered for like maternity care, blood tests, chronic medication and other such things. You need to make a list of items that you have to be covered for and ensure that the policy suits you and your family needs.

What are the Benefits of Health Insurance

Health insurance and medical aid are often confused. Health insurance is the supply of a lump sum that will cover hospital care due to an emergency, accident or operation and you can claim money paid for GP and dentist visits and other medical needs depending on your plan. Health insurance is catered to the customer and is suited for the individual and is literally insurance for your health.

health insurance

So, what are the benefits of health insurance?

Outpatient Care

Getting the care, you need is highly important, especially for those that have chronic diseases like heart conditions, diabetes and mental illness. Health insurance is able to offer cover and privileged care to patients without having to be hospitalised. Health insurance will offer a lump sum that allows for this type of care to be possible.

A Focus on Mental Health

The majority of medical aids will have a maximum limit where they will no longer be able to provide care to a patient in terms of mental health. Health insurance, on the other hand, allows patients to treat their mental illness without having to worry that they will deplete their care benefits. There are also health insurance plans that will cover addiction with rehabilitation as the treatment being offered, which is not common with medical aids.

Life Is Easier with Extra Benefits

Health insurance may offer additional benefits that some medical aids don’t. For instance, pregnant mothers and chronic patients can sometimes receive extra care. Pregnant women may have access to counselling and extra care before, during and after birth. Also, cover can be implemented when necessary as there is no waiting period to go to a medical practitioner or hospital.

Chronic patients can receive care that covers hospitalisation according to their needs, the cost of various tests and emergency cover when patients need care, surgery or counselling immediately that assists in managing their condition.

Suited to Your Needs

With health insurance, you are able to get the care you need at a price that is not determined by your current health, which means those that are seen as high risk by medical aids can get care.

Health insurance is also a viable option for those that seek minimal health cover as they can get cover that is suited to what they want. Cover is based on what you need and doesn’t define you in the same way as everyone else, but rather looks at your extra needs and provides for these.

Health insurance is a great product to have and is more affordable than medical aid that can leave you with shortfalls. Health insurance offers the care that you need at a price that suits your budget, making it a viable option for individuals.

 

Strategies to Pay Off High Interest Rate Debt

If you are sitting with a large balance on a credit card that has a high interest rate then you might be feeling frustrated as your monthly repayment is being used to pay the interest rather than the balance, which means your debt will only be reduced by a small amount each month. Paying off your high interest rate debts first will save you money in the long run, but this might not be the best method to undertake due to your finances.

credit card debt

Here are some top strategies that you can implement to help pay off your high interest rate debt.

Need a Lower Interest Rate – Just Ask

There are creditors that might be willing to lower the interest rates, but this generally goes to the best cardholders, which are the ones that have always paid on time or have only missed one or two payments.

If you have been getting lower rate offers from other credit cards then you can use this in your negotiations for a lower rate.

Make the Transfer to a Low Interest Rate Credit Card

You may only need a few months that are interest free to pay off your balance. You will find balance transfer cards that offer promotional periods where they do not charge interest. This could give you the break you need to pay off your balance without having to worry about the interest. Just make sure that you pay the balance before the interest kicks in.

If you are not able to move your entire balance to a single credit card then just move a portion as this will lighten the load and you can focus on paying this off before the interest is charged.

Take on Your Small Debts

If you are not in a position to first get rid of your high interest debts then you may want to consider tackling your smaller debts first. This will help you to free up some extra money that you can then use to pay down your high interest rate debts. You should create a list of your debts and determine which ones you can pay now and which ones will need to wait.

Once you have cleared a smaller debt, that money you were putting towards it should go straight to paying another credit card balance.

Wait…there are more strategies you can try…keep reading…

Pay The Most You Can

Due to most of your monthly payment going towards interest, you will need to pay more towards your payments in order for you to make any kind of progress in paying off your high interest debts. You may find it best to pay the minimum on all your other debts and any extra money that you have can go towards paying a single high interest rate debt.

Once one debt has been paid off you can start to work on your next highest interest rate debt and so on until you have cleared all of your debts.

Reduce Your Expenses

You will need to look at how you can squeeze your budget so that you have more to put towards your credit card debt. You can cut back on eating out, cut back on coffee, disconnect your cable, reduce your cell phone plan and so on. Making these cutbacks are only temporary and every little bit that you save to put towards your credit card debt will help your progress.

You Might Need to Wait

You may have to delay your debt free goal if you are not able to find extra money in your budget and are not able to generate any extra income. You should keep making the minimum monthly repayments on your credit card balances so that your credit score doesn’t take a hit and so that your debt doesn’t grow any further.

You will be wasting money on interest, but if you are not able to pay your high interest debts right now then wait a few months and then reassess your budget and expenses to see if anything has changed.

Get Credit Counselling

You can seek the help of a credit counsellor or a debt counsellor that will be able to create a debt management plan for you.

With a debt management plan, your creditors will lower your monthly payment and interest rate. You will not be able to use your credit cards during the process and your credit report may get a mark that says you worked with a debt counsellor.

The lower interest rates means that you can send larger monthly payments and you can ask that the additional payment goes to your higher rate first.

A debt consolidation loan is another option that you may have, but it’s not for everyone. This is where your debts are all housed under one loan, which means you will only have one repayment each month. This monthly repayment is usually lower and the interest rates are more manageable.

If you have high interest debt then you do need to tackle it whether, you pay smaller debts first or take on your largest and highest interest rate debt first. You need to look at how you are able to save money so you have extra to put towards your debt and determine the best strategy for you and your finances.

Manage Your Debt Problems

If you are facing debt problems then you need a sound debt management plan, which usually consists of three parts.

budget

Create a Budget

The first thing that you will need to do is to list all your sources of income no matter how big or small. Gather all your payslips, interest payouts, rental incomes, policy payouts etc. You need to know how much money you have to work with so you can avoid overspending.

Now you will need to list all of your monthly expenses, even those smaller ones that you may forget about. Determine how much you spend on groceries, utilities, entertainment, toiletries, subscription services, parking, snacks, eating out or takeaways etc.

Next, you will need to list all the credit providers that you owe money to and how much you have to pay each month. You will be able to find this information in your credit report.

You will need to allocate some of your income to a savings fund that creates interest. This money should only be used in a case of an emergency.

Also, there will be expenses that don’t occur regularly like holidays, a doctor’s visit, a wedding etc. You should have a contingency fund for these type of expenses.

Prepare a Debt Repayment Plan

You will need to have a good plan in place to avoid debt. Once you have your budget, you will have a better understanding of where your money goes each month.

You need to have the goal of paying your debt off as soon as possible by using any additional income or extra cash that you have into paying off your debt. You may find that you will need to make cutbacks in order to pay off debt.

You can focus any extra funds on a high interest debt first as once this debt is cleared, you will be able to free up some money that you can then use to pay off your second largest debt and so on. Or you can start with a small debt to get the ball rolling and tackle your largest debt last.

Stick to Your Plan

You may find that you are not keeping track of your accounts and expenses, which can then lead to unnecessary spending.

You then need to stick to your budget. You should update your expenses daily and review and adjust your budget every month.

You also need to avoid taking on any new debt and focus on paying off the debt that you have.

Paying off debt takes discipline and if you need further help, you can get advice from a debt counsellor and they may assist in creating a debt management plan for you.

 

10 Practical Ways to Cut Expenses and Save Money

If you need to save some money but aren’t really sure how or where you can make cut backs then take a look at these 10 practical ways that you are able to cut your expenses and save some money.

save money

Stop and Think Before Impulse Buying

Have you seen something that you absolutely must have? Well, before you buy it, stop and think about it. You should give yourself at least 24 hours before you really decide if you have to have it and giving yourself 72 hours is even better. You can save yourself quite a bit of money when you do this because even though at the time you thought you had to have it, you will realise that your life is just as satisfying without these things.

When the impulse buying urge kicks in, stop and give yourself a time out and go away from the item and think about it. You can also ask your friends and family to help you call this time out.

Find Low Cost Substitutions

You don’t need to give up on the things that you enjoy doing, but rather find low cost substitutions. For instance, if you are an avid book reader then why not go to the library instead of the book store or if you play golf swap a tee time for a trip to the driving range instead. You will be able to save a little here and there, but this can add up.

Skip Your Favourite Store

Is there a shop that you can’t resist going into and every time you do, you end up spending money? Whatever, your favourite store is the next time you go by it, just keep going and resist that urge to walk in. You need to break the habit of shopping for the sake of shopping, so find other things to do to occupy your time like going for a walk, reading a book or having a cup of coffee.

save moeny

If your weakness is online shopping then rather watch an episode of a show you enjoy or a movie or even a music video instead of shopping.

In order to make this work, you need to replace your shopping habit with a new habit and it is a lot more satisfying having your savings increase then just buying stuff.

Downsize if You Can

You may believe that our value is represented by the things we own, but making smart financial decisions is worthier. You should look at your lifestyle and see what changes you can make. This could be your house, your car or your clothes. You should look at where you can downsize and rather be financially secure then having a bunch of fancy things.

Use Your Car Less

You can cut down on the amount of times that you use your car, which will then save on your petrol. You can look at creating a carpool with other parents, for instance, for taking the kids to school or you can carpool with other employees once a week. Another option would be to use public transport if you can.

If you are still working, you can find out if it is possible for you to work remotely from home once a week.

If you have errands to run, then write them all down and get them done in one day and plan for times when there isn’t a lot of traffic. You could even consolidate and carpool all at once and run your errands with a friend.

Wait…there are still more ways to cut back and save some money…

Analyse Your Monthly Home Expenses

You need to take a look at your home expenses and see where you can save money. Take a look at your phone bill and see if you are paying for any extras that you don’t need, which can be turned off. Also, look at your satellite TV bill and see if you are paying for channels that you don’t need, which you are paying for every month as these expenses can quickly add up.

Also, turn off your heater or air-conditioning during the day and when you are not at home. It won’t be as comfortable in your home when you walk through the door, but the savings will add up.

Restrict Eating Out

It is easy to consistently buy your lunch or dinner, but this can add up to a lot of money if you are in the habit of doing it every day. You should take a lunch from home once in a while and before you head out for dinner or order a takeaway, check your pantry and see if you can come up with a creative meal at home.

If you have to eat out often, then skip the sodas, or alcohol or other drinks and go for water. This is better for you and will save you money on drinks when you have lunch or dinner.

Use Discounts and Promos

With a little effort, you will be able to pay less for most things. You will be able to find discount codes and sales that will save you money. Many online retailers constantly have offers where you can save money on clothes, household items and more, so you should check for these. Physical stores also have sales and offers, for instance, a supermarket might be offering discounts on certain products and even though it may not be your brand, you can give it a try and save some money.

shopping

However, be careful, many of us get lured into spending more because there is a sale. You should then resist buying things you don’t need and get what you do. Take note of the things that you already buy and find ways to get these for less or if you need new clothes, determine what you already own and what you need and only look for these items in the sale and not get tempted by other items just because they are on sale.

Cancel Your Gym Membership

Exercising and being fit is important and if the only way you are able to stick to an exercise regime is through a gym then keep your membership.

However, if you are a self-motivated type of person then there are plenty of ways you can stay fit without having to pay a monthly fee. You can walk, run, watch fitness videos on YouTube, do yoga, push-ups, sit-ups and more. You don’t need to pay to stay fit.

Turn Your Hobby into a Business

If you have a hobby, have you ever thought about turning it into a business? You may not make a lot of money, but you can make some to cover the cost of your hobby and maybe even a little extra to save.  So, if you have an arts and crafts hobby like beading, knitting, making jewellery, baking or anything else then see how you can make some money from it.

If you are horse rider, you can perhaps make a trade where you work in the stables for a few hours a week in exchange for lessons. You can do this for a number of hobbies and it doesn’t hurt to ask as you can still enjoy your hobby but without the cost behind it.

Implement some of these practical money saving tips and use the money you save to pay down any debt that you may have or put it away in a savings account and just watch it grow.