​​Things You Can Actually Do About the Rising Cost of Living

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You’ll have probably seen a lot of blog posts like this one. Often, they simply regurgitate the same ideas. Half the time, what they recommend is either impractical for a busy mum or won’t move the needle when implemented.

Whilst you can cut back, there is a limit to what you can save. Cancelling your Netflix and Spotify subscriptions alone won’t cut it. You need to take the kitchen sink approach. You might need to throw everything you’ve got at it.

Here’s a combination of ways to save money and things you can do to make more.

Money saving ideas

Refinance your home loan

Let’s start with something likely to make the biggest difference. Refinancing your home loan could save you thousands over the years. Surprisingly, it is a relatively simple process. Provided you do your research is nothing to be afraid of.

Take your time, seek advice if you need it, read up about the pitfalls and crunch the numbers for each option you are considering switching to. Look at what the impact will be over the long term as well as the short term.

If you’re reading this and thinking you can’t refinance because of what’s on your credit report, there are ways to get a low rate without refinancing that you could look into.

Switch utility provider

Switching gas, electricity, phone, and internet provider is a highly effective way to keep your monthly expenses as low as possible. Most companies offer new customers the best low-cost deals, including cash back.

If you like your current provider, give them a ring several weeks before your contract is up and tell them you are considering switching. You will be surprised by how often they will match or beat the deal you have found elsewhere.

Use less of everything

Using less is a fast way to cut your bills. It is surprisingly easy to do this.

Surprisingly, around 10% of most households’ electricity bill is for appliances on standby. Australians are estimated to waste $860 million annually on keeping those little red lights lit.

It’s not just turning off the lights when you leave a room or turning the TV off at the wall. Be more mindful when shopping for food. Plan ahead, so you waste less and save more.

Buy less stuff

Try and avoid needless spending, and if you need to buy something — a work outfit, school clothes, etc. — consider buying second-hand before buying new. Facebook’s marketplace is a good place to check or a local OpShop.

Downsize your car

If you no longer need a big car, trade it for something smaller. Running a smaller car is cheaper regarding fuel consumption, insurance, and maintenance. If you get a good price when trading in your car, you may even be able to buy the smaller replacement and own it outright.

Get out of debt

Debt eats away at your cash. A credit card balance transfer is an excellent way to save money quickly if you have debt on a credit card or store card. Finty’s balance transfer comparison is a good place to find deals that offer 0% interest on the transfer for a long period of time.

Note: You won’t be able to transfer what you owe Afterpay, though, as most cards do not allow transfers from BNPL accounts.

Make some more money

So far, we have only really talked about saving money. Now, we are going to take a quick look at making more of it, and, as you will see, that does not necessarily mean having to work more hours.

Make money with sign-up bonuses

All kinds of companies are eager to attract new customers. Some will even pay you a bonus when you sign up with them. So, keep an eye out for sign-up bonuses and take advantage of them when it makes sense for you to do so.

Earn cash back

Sites like Kickback pay you cash when you buy through them. That might sound too good to be true, but it’s a legit way to make more money. It works like this. Stores pay the website when they refer sales, and the website shares their commission with you. Depending on how much you spend, this is a way to save/make hundreds of dollars.

Rent out your car

Renting out your car is a great example of this. You can be sitting at home relaxing while your vehicle is out there making money for you. Aussie company Car Next Door is a good place to start if you are interested in this.

Rent your house out

You could also rent out your house, or part of it. Taking in a lodger for a few months is a quick way to give your income a boost.

Alternatively, you could rent out your whole house for a while on Airbnb, provided you have somewhere cheap or free to live while you do that. This works particularly well if you live in or near a popular tourist destination or close to a stadium or conference centre where large events are held.

Let other people store their stuff in your space

Renting out your garage, loft, or other space is an effective way to earn passive income. Many people want somewhere local to store bulky items that they only use a few times a year.

Sell off your old stuff

Getting into the habit of selling anything you have not used for a while can generate hundreds of extra cash over the course of a year. The more you do it, the easier it becomes to sell your items fast and get a good price for them.

Register for gigs on Airtasker

Airtasker is a great place to earn a little extra quickly. It is full of people looking for help with DIY tasks, cleaning, furniture assembly, errands and much more.

Start a side business

Starting a side business is easier than ever, especially if you choose something that can be done online. Often you will be able to use the skills you use for your day job to earn more money in the evenings or on your days off.


THIS IS A SPONSORED ARTICLE. Check out Rachels’ List for freelance writing gigs with Australian businesses. Other options include the Aussie-owned Freelancer or Fiverr.