Handy Hints

Savings & Smashed Avo

A 2021 Guide to generating savings without missing out.

We’ve all heard the old wives’ tales (or ‘new boomer tales’) about the next generation’s inability to afford a home of their own, purely due to their penchant for toasted bread and smashed fruit .🥑

While it might sound incredibly silly, we do understand where they’re coming from, which is why we’ve written a blog on our top tips to having your Smashed Avo on toast (and eating it too).

While savings aren’t the be-all and end-all of getting a home loan (find out more about our low deposit home loan options here), having some money put aside certainly improves your financial position, and it all comes down to a little bit of planning and organisation. 

  •  Budgets, Lists and planning 
    Setting a budget for your weekly groceries, and planning out your meals is a great way to ensure you’re making good financial choices when it comes to food – it also makes your weeknights A LOT easier.  You can still enjoy yourself by scheduling in a meal or two to eat out each week (your restrictions need to be realistic to work), but having a comprehensive grocery list (and sticking to it), is bound to stop you from putting half your weekly wage straight into your stomach!  Planning ahead and buying your regularly used non-perishables in bulk when they are on special will also contribute to your savings in the long run. 
  • Reduce your utility bills
    Small changes to your daily habits can make a big difference in the long term.  Things as simple as turning off lights and appliances when you’re not using them, switching your lights to energy saving globes, and taking advantage of the seasonal settings on your ceiling fans can all contribute to reducing your utility bills (and carbon footprint) over time.  
    Other great ways to save utility costs include having set days to do your laundry, use the dishwasher and water the plants/lawns, meaning you’re not mindlessly using each appliance daily out of habit.  
    Habit changes such as reducing your screen time, reducing your shower length, and getting out and active instead of watching Netflix or playing video games, will all help contribute to lowering your bills (and emissions – win/win). 

  • Have a goal
    Having a goal in mind like a house deposit (hint, hint), is a great way to motivate yourself to save.  By starting with a goal, you can reverse engineer it to turn your goal into a plan.  If you’re looking to save $10,000 in 6 months, you would need to be saving $385 a week, or $1,660 a month to achieve your goal.  If this doesn’t sound achievable to you, you may need to look at readjusting your goal, as the key to success is achievability! 

  • Reward yourself
    It’s important to make saving your hard-earned money fun and rewarding, otherwise you’re likely to lose sight of your goals and slip.  A great way to achieve this is by rewarding yourself along the way.  If your goal is to save $10,000, then each time you save another $2,000, treat yo’self to a little congratulatory gift you’ve had your eye on.  This is also a great way to reduce impulse spending, as you’ll appreciate it even more when you feel like you’ve earned it.  Have your ‘Avo’ and eat it too some might say.

  • Make it automatic, baby!
    What could make it easier to save than not having to lift a finger? Once you’ve determined your goal and what your achievable regular contributions will be, it’s a great idea to set up an automatic transfer into your savings account for right after your pay goes in.  Whether your savings get transferred weekly, fortnightly or monthly should match your pay cycle so it’s nice and easy, and you know the funds will be there!  Once you’ve done your groceries and paid your bills, the rest is yours to spend how you’d like.

  • Don’t underestimate loose change
    Another great minor change you can make, is to create a loose change jar – you’ll be surprised how quickly it adds up.  
    There are also apps you can use to round up your purchases and automatically transfer the difference to your savings.  For example, if you spend $19.50, $0.50 will be transferred to your savings account.  You might not notice it now, but it’ll add up over time.
  • Make smart spending choices
    Just because you’re trying to save your money, it doesn’t mean you have to give up living your best life – balance is key.  BUT, being savvy about your spending habits will definitely help you to hit your savings goals.  
    Visualising your purchases in hours worked can help you to determine something’s value to you, so if that dress or fishing reel costs $200, and you get paid $30 an hour, you would have to work about 7 hours to pay for it.  Still worth it? Go ahead! 
    Unsubscribing from retail newsletters (to prevent yourself finding out about sales on things you don’t actually need), waiting 24 hours before making purchases to see if it’s an impulse buy or something you really want, and not storing your payment details in your phone are all other great ways to deter unnecessary spending. 
    Making your coffees at home during the week and treating yourself to a latte on the weekends is another great one, as well as reducing the amount of alcohol you drink – you’d be surprised how heavily this one can impact people’s saving goals.  Add it up, we dare you.

  • Save your bonuses
    Whether it’s a bonus from work, your tax return, or birthday money from Grandma, extra funds you weren’t expecting were never part of your working budget, so why not put them straight where they’ll be most useful? Your savings account! If this makes you feel a bit gypped you didn’t get to enjoy it, try adopting an 80/20 approach.  80% to savings, 20% to treat yo’self. 

  • DIY 
    It’s amazing how much you can save from doing things yourself.  Instead of forking out $30 at the carwash, wash your car on the front lawn and get a 2-for-1 water in while you’re at it.  If getting your nails done is a luxury you really enjoying having, consider learning how to do it for yourself.  For the price of a $50 starter kit, you could save yourself over $2,000 over the course of a year just from nails.  Just imagine if you took on the face, hair and body too!! 
  • Try a spending freeze
    Much like the recent lockdown, ESSENTIALS ONLY, BABY!
    For an entire week, fortnight or month (you choose), don’t buy anything but the essentials.  No beers, no coffees, no UberEATS, no clothes, no dog toys – you get the idea.

By following these 10 easy tips, you’ll be on track to your savings goals in no time at all!

If you would like help creating a customised savings plan for your dream home, shoot us a message and we’ll help you put one together. 

📸 : @300acreswa