4 ways to save money in 2020

Trying to save money is always difficult, especially when you think there is nothing left to cut. Since the January blues are now over, take back control of your personal budget and make some savings.

Making some of these changes might not be easy at first, but it can be worthwhile. More importantly, it gets you into the habit of examining your spending every month and reviewing your expenses every 12 months – This will save you money.

Some of the saving ideas below can seem small when looked at in a single month. Always factor the savings you’ve made into the annual yearly budget. This 12-month multiplier effect will show you how much you can do. We’ve outlined 4 ways we think you can save more money in 2020.

Why Get Financial Advice?

When you have a big decision to make, or your life is changing there’s a lot to think about.

Impartial professional financial advice helps you make a better decision that gives you better options and saves you money for the rest of your life. 

How we can help you

  • Get your personal financial plan in place.
  • Increase your monthly & annual savings.
  • Plan for a secure retirement.
  • Buying a home or investment property.
  • Protecting your family.

Save Money

Idea 1

Switch your direct debits

Electricity/Gas: Based on information from the Commission for Regulation of Utilities (CRU) in the 2nd quarter of 2019, there is a slow down in people switching energy providers. Click here for more information. 

CRU estimates that customers who switched or renegotiated every year for the last 4 years could have saved €704 on gas, €1,097 on electricity or €1,696 on their dual fuel costs.

TV & Broadband: Look at your TV & Broadband package and see what you could save by switching or altering your package. Ask yourself the value you get from each service, and how you could live without it. Look at streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime and NowTV as alternatives to your normal TV package.

Mobile Phones: Are you out of contract on your mobile phone? Stay that way. Look for cheaper sim-only deals that could save you money. (I’ve saved €420 per year by being on a sim-only deal.) If you need a new phone, buy a sim-free phone, and factor in the cost over a 24 month period.

Insurances & Bank Charges: Examine every insurance product you have: Car; Health; Home, & Mortgage Protection. A month before renewal, take 30 minutes and explore your other options. Ask yourself what you would save in a year if you cut all of these costs by 10%. Check other banks to see what options you have in changing bank accounts to save money on fees and charges. 

Save Money Idea 2

Examine your financing

Do you have any loans or financing? Make sure you understand the complete cost and type of loan. If you have cash to hand, check and see what the cost of clearing any finance ahead of schedule could be.

If you have credit card debt, focus on clearing the debt as quickly as possible, even diverting potential savings to clear this debt. Explore any options around personal loans and see if would be cheaper to borrow and clear the credit card debt. Then throw the credit card in the bin. 

The cost of car-financing can be quite severe. Always think “Do I need this, or just want this?“. If it is a want, wait until you can afford it. This means you will drive an older car, but will save more money. Over time you can build a fund to purchase your chosen car.

Don’t Despair or give up! We all know how hard this is. 

Keep the following in mind:

  • You’ll save money – The changes you make now have a multiplier effect over time.
  • You’re dealing with it – Dealing with problems sooner rather than later is always better.
  • A better future – You’re setting up yourself and your family for a better tomorrow by tackling today.

Save Money Idea 3

your daily spends

Begin tackling your daily spends. These include your weekly food budget, lunches during work and your entertainment spending. Look at the following:

  • Lunches ((5 days x €5) x 48) weeks per year = €1,200 per year in lunch spending.
  • Coffees One in three Irish people now buys a coffee at least once a day. ((3 days x €2.5) x 48) weeks per year. = €360.00 per year in coffee spending.
  • Dinners. Plan your dinners, this will help you spend less by only buying what you need.
  • Give yourself a realistic weekly budget. Include your nights out, weekend spending and any other spending.
  • If you smoke, vape or drink too much, figure out how to stop now. Smoking or vaping will only increase health insurance, life insurance and mortgage protection costs.  

Save Money Idea 4

Measure, Monitor, Maintain.

Use tools to help you manage your spending. Plan out your monthly and annual expenses and income. Contact us if you would like a handy spreadsheet.

For daily spending, use an app like fudget to track your spending.

Look at revolut  or similar online debit cards as your daily cash wallet, instead of your current account. You can set up different budgets, which makes it easy to analyse how much you spend, and what you’re buying.

Stop using cash as much as possible. At the end of the month, you can easily see where you spent money instead of multiple cash withdrawals.

Open a savings account. There are plenty to choose from, each with different features. After working out your budget for the month, move the savings amount into the account straight away. This will remove the temptation to spend.

About Debbie Cheevers

Debbie qualified as APA in 2017 and a fully qualified financial advisor (QFA) in 2018. She believes that product knowledge is key to helping customers make the right choices.

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