Finder has revealed how Aussies are trying to cut household spending amid the rising cost of living and has offered simple tips for saving more in 2023.
The most popular savings hack is to cook at home instead of paying for expensive food at a restaurant, with 77 per cent of those surveyed saying they are now "eating in" more.
Switching off lights came in second (69 per cent) and staying home rather than going out (68 per cent) rounded out the top three ways households were cutting costs in the face of rising inflation. The research also found that two in five Australians (40 per cent) used fuel-discount vouchers to reduce their petrol expenses, while another one in six people (16 per cent) were borrowing non-essential items instead of purchasing to cut back.
Make your home energy-efficient
Rebecca Pike, money expert at Finder, said if you were feeling the cost-of-living pinch and weren't sure how to reduce your spending, evaluating your home appliances was a good place to start.
"Energy-efficient appliances will make a huge difference to your power bill and can save you $54 off your household bills each year. You can see how energy-efficient your appliances are by checking the star rating label – it's usually plastered on the front of the product."
What's the harm in leaving appliances on standby? It turns out, quite a lot.
"Turning your appliances off could save you around $100 a year," Pike said. "Of all the ways to save on household bills, switching devices off at the wall instead of leaving them on in the background might be the easiest."
Re-evaluate your health insurance
Pike also recommended reassessing your private health cover to see where you could cut costs.
"Take a quick look at your health insurance policy to see what you've used – or more importantly, not used," she said.
"The easiest way to save is by switching to a policy that only covers you for the services you need. Alternatively, if you're happy to use the public system, consider ditching your policy altogether. Private hospital insurance typically covers the same treatments as Medicare. The main difference is that private waiting times are often shorter and you get to choose the doctor."
Make your money work harder
Finally, Pike warned against leaving your money sitting idle and recommended the use of personal finance apps.
"If your money is sitting in a regular transaction account, it's worth switching to a high-interest savings account," she said.
"Your money will earn interest each month – rather than just sit there – and, thanks to compound interest, you'll earn interest on your interest as well."