July 07, 2011
There are some key ways to give your savings power a boost.
Save regularly, not just here and there
You need to get into good saving habits now. Putting a chunk of money aside when you have it is good, but changing your habits so that you’re saving money like clockwork is essential for getting ahead. Sit down and use online tools to work out a realistic budget, and then stick to it. Divide your expenditure into two categories: must-haves and nice-to-haves – and be ruthless with the latter.
Make your money work
Put your savings into a high interest account or fixed term deposit. If you choose to invest your hard-earned money, make sure you don’t put every penny you have at risk; opt for income-producing assets over higher risk activities such as capital growth assets.
Earn more than you spend
Unfortunately, this is the hardest technique for many to get their head around. Are you in a position to ask for a raise at work? Is a second job going to get you over the line – it doesn’t have to be forever? Have a huge garage sale or sell your unwanted household items on eBay. Another successful strategy is to use your main income for day-to-day living and put everything else into a second account, which remains untouched.
Government programs and grants
Go beyond the First Home Owner’s Grant (FHOG) and investigate government incentives such as First Home Saver Accounts (homesaver.treasury.gov.au). Each state also has differing versions of the First Home Owners Grant and other incentives to help you get a foot on the property ladder.
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