Review all your utilities/subscriptions
We can all get caught in the trap of finding the “best” deal – and then never reviewing it. Companies like to entice new customers to join them by providing a deal or giving away merchandise, but once the promotional period ends it usually means you are back to paying full price. I like to call this the loyalty tax.
This can be one way to save a bit of cash in 2022, by doing your own review. Every year in January I make sure I review my power, internet, phone bill, insurances and even right down to my dogs flea treatment bill. There are a range of awesome websites that help you with this such as Powerswitch and Broadband compare (which are totally free to use).
Make sure your KiwiSaver contributions equal $1042.86 by 30th June
KiwiSaver is an awesome tool that most New Zealanders already invest into through salary and wages. The great thing about KiwiSaver is that the government will give you a contribution of $521.43. This can be used towards buying a first home or your retirement.
All you have to do is contribute $1042.86 of your own money between 1 July and 30th June each year. This can be done through salary and wage deductions or voluntary payments to either the IRD or your scheme provider.
(Employer contributions, past government contributions and funds moved from and Australian retirement scheme wont count. It has to be your own money)
Auto save/invest a set amount each week
As humans we are really good at signing up for things then forgetting about them (look at all the gym memberships that are paid for every year and never used). So why not do the same with your saving or investing? Build it into your budget that you will put a certain amount aside each payday that goes into a savings or investing account – then simply forget about it.
There are some great platforms out there that allow you to auto invest if you aren’t wanting to leave your money in a bank account. Just make sure you get financial advice if you aren’t sure if investing is for you.
Ask for a raise
As kiwis we typically don’t like asking for things, but right now there is a labour shortage in New Zealand. This means there is no better time than right now to ask for a raise. Most companies will be doing reviews at some point this year so this is the perfect opportunity to have an honest discussion around your salary expectations.
If you aren’t successful at getting a pay rise then perhaps it is time to look at finding a new job? Changing jobs every 3-5 years is totally normal these days, and if you have been thinking about it for a while then now could be the time to do it.
Refinance any of your debts
Finding extra money in the budget to pay off debts can be tough, but what if you can pay the same payments to your debts and reduce them at a faster rate? This is the purpose of refinancing. To take your higher interest debt and shop around for a better interest rate. That way you can be making the same repayments, but there will be a larger amount paid on the principal – saving you money on the interest.
You can refinance any car loan; credit card debt can be consolidated and your mortgage can be refinanced to a new bank to negotiate a cash back or interest rate. Every little bit helps. If you need a hand with any of the refinancing side of things, please reach out. As a financial adviser I can guide you through all of these.