You know how the saying goes, penny wise, pound foolish. Sometimes, for focusing too much on saving little amounts here and there, we forget about the big picture. For example, we would skip the latte on the way to work, and make coffee at home. Great! That is a terrific new habit for you to develop if you want to save money. However, we are only talking about a tiny bit of money every month.
On the other hand, there are little life changes or adjustments that do not require a lot of time to set up, and can result in big savings.
One of them is refinancing your mortgage. It can be as easy as sitting down with your banker for half an hour, or filling up your information on Loanable’s website, so you can be matched with potential lenders who could offer you a better deal on your house finance. Because of the huge amount you borrowed to buy a house, and the length of the loan, lowering your payments by even 5% every month will result in huge savings over the life of the loan.
Another great use of your time is negotiating your debt with your other creditors. Your credit card provider, for example, if you carry a balance. Credit cards usually have double digit interest rates, and if you keep on making minimum payment every month, your balance will take years to kill, or might even grow every month. If you have made your payments on time until now, you should have good credit, and be eligible for 0% balance transfer credit cards. Once your balance is carried over there, every payment you make will go entirely to pay off the balance, and not service the debt. Make sure you note the end date of the 0% deal and try to pay everything you owe by then. You can also look at competitors when it comes to student loans, car loans, personal loans, and so on, and call your creditor saying that other company offers such and such terms, and are they able to give you a better deal on your debt. Most of the time they will, saving you time and energy to fill up paperwork with other lenders. But if they don’t, don’t be afraid to shop around for something better.
Negotiating also works really well with utility providers. Every year, you can call your broadband provider, and ask to remain on the new customer discount. It works most of the time. Or just hang up and call back in hopes to find a more inclined customer service representative! Switching your electricity and gas provider is as easy as heading online, entering your postcode and address, and your monthly consumption. You can find information about your usage on your last bill. If you accept to pay via monthly direct debit, you can usually get a great deal, that will be applicable for at least 12 months. Again, make a note in your agenda 11 months from now, and start shopping for bigger savings!
These little changes take barely hours and can save you thousands. By focusing on the big ticket items, you can save way more with less effort.