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Saving money won't cost you the earth

Saving money won't cost you the earth

Besides stashing away regular money into a high interest savings account or cutting up your credit cards there are clever ways to save money that will have a positive impact on your bank account, as well as our environment.

With Earth Hour casting darkness over the world this weekend – in the name of environmental conservation – we thought it would be fitting to share with you some of our RateCity user’s savings tips – a lot of which are quirky but clever.

Save on electricity

“This drives my wife crazy but I unplug everything in our house – except when we use it. Phantom energy use really adds up!” Bryn Probett said.

“Run appliances such as clothes dryers and dishwashers at night to avoid peak energy rates and the humid heat they generate,” Rob Haydon recommended.

“Reduce your power bill by training your dog to lie across the bottom of the door. This will reduce drafts in winter and stop cool air escaping in summer,” Owen humourlessly suggested.

Avoid food waste

“Do your grocery shopping online to avoid buying things you don’t need and to work out the best price per unit,” Alison Loxton suggested.

“Do a regular $30 food-challenge: Plan your meals from whatever is left in your pantry/fridge and spend no more than $30 that week,” Irene Pelow recommended. 

“Get together with a few families and buy in bulk at your local wholesaler or farmers markets. This way you get fresh produce, save money on packaging and it’s great for environment,” Claire Thrower.

And finally, Jeff Shillitto’s suggestion to “pour any leftover milk from your breakfast cereal back in to the bottle” may be a little extreme but you get his idea – waste not want not.

Water savings tips

“Install artificial grass, best thing to do in Perth, as it saves on your water and power bill as there’s no need for water irrigation system!” Phillipa Giltay shared.

“Save money on your water bill, like my parents did, by putting pebbles in the toilet water tank. Displace a litre or two of water and save!” Gianna (Gigi) Huesch recommended.

“Reduce your water bill by mulching your garden with free garden mulch. Tree loppers will gladly give away mulch to avoid paying tip fees,” Sue Wood reveals.

Go green

“Reuse and re-purpose food containers (sour cream, etc.) instead of buying new containers,” Jody Buhagiar suggested.

“Research homemade cleaning products. You’ll be amazed what you can do with white vinegar, lemons and baking soda. Cheap and environmentally friendly,” Nicole Morris recommended.

“Grow a vegetable garden. It’s chemical-free, convenient, allows for family involvement and harvests fresh, fabulous produce that is readily available and almost free,” Joanne Sellers said.

And for one final money, environment – and life – tip, take heed of our savvy RateCity user’s advice and always shop with your husband.

“I save money by shopping with my husband. All browsing is accompanied with ‘What do you need that for?’” Annette Nardini joked.

Earth Hour is a worldwide event aimed at conserving our environment by switching off all lights for one hour. On March 29 at 8:30pm Australia will be switching off their lights – this year to mark the threat of climate change on Australia’s iconic Great Barrier Reef. 

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Learn more about savings accounts

How to make money with a savings account?

Savings accounts make you money by earning interest on your savings. The more money you deposit, the longer you leave it in the account, and the higher the account’s interest rate, the more interest you’ll be paid by the bank or financial institution, and the more your wealth will grow.

To make sure your savings account makes money and doesn’t lose money, it’s important to maintain a large enough minimum balance that the annual interest earned exceeds any annual fees charged on the account.

Can you have multiple ING savings accounts?

Yes, you can open up to nine accounts with ING at any particular time. If you’re saving money for various goals, such as buying a car or taking a holiday, you can name each of your multiple ING savings accounts differently.

To get a Savings Maximiser account, you’ll need to deposit more than $1000 every month and make at least five additional purchases. If you also want to grow your savings, from 1st March 2021, you can earn up to 1.35 per cent per annum variable interest on one account with a balance of up to $100,000 when you also maintain an Orange Everyday account.

With ING, multiple savings accounts can help keep track of all your savings goals. All the accounts offer flexible withdrawals where you can withdraw as low or as high as you want without impacting your earning interest rate. However, you can only earn the bonus interest on one account. To apply for a Savings Maximiser account, you can visit ingdirect.com.au.

What is an ANZ locked savings account?

An ANZ locked savings account locks your money and prevents you from spending. You may use a standard savings account as the account where your salary is deposited. You can then withdraw funds when needed, but aren’t able to make purchases with it. However, this account may not grow much as the continual withdrawing of funds will limit the interest you can earn.

With a locked savings account in ANZ, you know your savings will grow because you can’t access the money. You can also qualify for a bonus when you deposit at least $10 per month and don’t make any withdrawals. To help you with this further you can set up an automatic transfer from your regular ANZ savings or transaction account so you don’t forget to make a monthly deposit.

Your ANZ locked savings account offers you a base interest rate of 0.1 per cent per annum plus an additional bonus interest of 0.49 per cent per year. The interest is calculated daily and credited to your account on the last working day of the month.

Should I open a Commonwealth locked savings account?

If you have trouble saving money, a Commbank locked savings account could be a potential solution. A locked savings account won’t let you make withdrawals and as such, it can help you grow your savings balance if you keep topping it up. 

The Commonwealth locked savings account advertises high-interest rates and minimal maintenance fees, along with a host of other incentives that will encourage you not to touch the money. 

The account offers a higher interest rate for each month that you make limited or no withdrawals, as well as regular deposits. 

To qualify for a Commonwealth locked savings account with the advertised features, you will need to fulfil specific criteria such as:

  • Depositing a fixed minimum amount into the account every month.
  • Making a fixed number of deposits each month.
  • Making a minimum or no withdrawals each month.
  • Maintaining a minimum account balance.