27 October 2022
How to spend less on your living expenses
2 in 5 people could not afford to pay for an unexpected expense of €1,000 according to a recent survey conducted by Behaviour and Attitudes (September 2022). Almost half of those surveyed are fearful that the cost-of-living crisis will not ease in 2023.
With that in mind, we at Comhar Linn Credit Union have put together some money-saving tips that we hope will help our members to minimise the effect of the rising cost of living.
These financial hacks are intended to inspire you to adapt them to suit your particular life stage and lifestyle.
Cancel Subscriptions – do you really know how many subscriptions you have? Do you use them? Is there an automatic annual renewal set up? It’s a good idea to list all of these subscriptions and review your usage at least once a year.
Record your expenses – over a month to see where you’re spending your money. Once you see it all written down (in excel etc.) it’s much easier to get a handle on your spending habits; you might be surprised at the results!
Budgeting – create an annual budget or download one of the many free templates available online. It’s so important to know what expenses you have in a year – and to distinguish your ‘wants’ from your ‘needs’. Do you have a contingency fund to manage rising costs?
If you would like some assistance with managing your annual budget, Comhar Linn CU offers a Budget Account to members. This facility is an efficient, stress-free way of managing your bills. We offer a personal one-to-one service whereby we plan your monthly and annual outlay together. Our Budget Account service guarantees that your bills are paid on time, giving you peace of mind that you’re on top of your finances and are prepared for a rainy day. As part of this service, we offer ongoing support and an annual review of your Budget Account each year.
This cost of this service is just €42 per year.
Spend less on your food bills – see our article on this with lots of ideas on how to save money on those rising food bills.
Switching providers: Although it can seem a daunting task, researching alternatives to your current suppliers can make a tidy saving over a year. Bonkers.ie is an easy-to-use comparison website that has up-to-date information on many of the main suppliers of electricity, broadband, and insurance products.
Our Current Account is one of the suppliers listed on bonkers.ie When comparing current account options, you’ll see that ‘Current Account’ from credit unions offers a very competitive, low rate of €12 per quarter maintenance fees, with no fees charged per euro debit card purchase. If you’d like to discuss switching, please contact us or see our step-by-step guide here
Sell your unused items – it’s great for the environment too! Sell your items online through eBay, or adverts.ie, local Facebook groups etc.
Loans – it pays to be rate-savvy i.e., to know how much interest you’re paying on your loan(s). But that isn’t the only rate you should be aware of; check what documentation or set-up fees you’re being charged. Investigate any potential additional costs such as financial penalties for repaying a loan early. With car finance, make sure you are fully aware of limitations on mileage etc. which if not adhered to can result in additional costs for you.
If you are in the market for a loan, or you would like to consolidate (lump) all your loans together into 1 Comhar Linn CU loan, we do not charge any documentation/set-up fees, nor do we penalise you if you decide to repay your loan early. There are no restrictions applied to our car loans. Try out our handy online calculator to see what your repayments might be with a Comhar Linn loan.
Savings- It’s always a good idea to adopt a regular savings habit so that you’re covered in case of an unexpected financial expense, and so you have funds available for special occasions that crop up during the year.
Update your heating controls – to give you complete control of when and how your heating comes on and off, you’re never burning gas or oil unnecessarily.
Adjust your thermostat – by turning it down by just 1% you could save up to 3% off your energy bill.
Don’t leave appliances on standby – as they’re still using electricity (think: mobile chargers, laptop chargers, digital radios, TVs etc.).
Improve your home’s energy efficiency – by upgrading insulation and you could recoup some of the costs via a government energy grant. See our recent article with details here.
Quick tips to save money on everyday living expenses:
In summary, the article above contains money-saving hacks including:
- Cancel subscriptions
- Record your expenses
- Spend less on your groceries
- Sell unused items
- Check if you could save money by switching your loan provider
- See what savings could be made on your Current Account costs
- Update your boiler & heating controls
- Adjust your thermostat
- Don’t leave appliances on standby
- Improve your home’s energy efficiency
At Comhar Linn we’re invested in our members’ financial well-being. If you have any queries on the services mentioned in this article, or if you would like to discuss your account/loans with us please contact us at 01 873 1101 or email firstname.lastname@example.org