No matter what your financial situation is, reducing your household budget can give you a little more flexibility when it comes to managing your money. Whether you’re eager to pay off your debts, you’re saving up for something special or you want to enjoy more disposable income at the end of every month, cutting the cost your bills can help you to achieve your financial goals.
To get started, take a look at the following five ways to reduce your household budget:
1. Keep on Top of Maintenance
If your property is well-maintained, you’re likely to spend far less on repairs. Furthermore, regular maintenance means you’ll know in advance when something is going to need to be replaced, which will enable you to spread the cost accordingly. A sudden breakdown or a broken pipe can result in unexpected bills that put you in the red but routine maintenance will alert you to potential problems and enable you to take preventative action.
In addition to this, there are many home maintenance jobs that you can carry out yourself. While there are some tasks, like checking the electrics, that should only be completed by a certified contractor, there are (endless!) home maintenance tasks you can work into your schedule. Changing the filters in your HVAC system can reduce running costs, for example, and only takes a few minutes.
When you keep on top of maintenance throughout the year, you can see a significant reduction in your bills. What’s more – being able to plan for larger expenses will ensure you feel more in control of your money.
2. Consider Financing Options
When you do need to spend a significant amount to keep your home in working order, take a look at the financing options that are available. A new boiler is a considerable expense for most families, for example, but interest-free financing can enable you to spread the cost without paying anything extra. When you order boilers on finance from BoilerCentral, for example, you can choose to pay nothing for six months, use interest-free financing or pay interest and finance your boiler over a period of up to 10 years.
With so many options available, it’s easy to see why financing can be such an attractive option. Providing you scour the market for the best deals and ensure you can cover the requisite repayments, spreading the cost of larger essential purchases can be a viable way to reduce your household expenditure and manage your budget more effectively.
3. Switch Utility Suppliers
Utility bills can’t be eradicated completely but they can often be significantly reduced. When you sign up to a utility provider, you’re typically offered an introductory deal but, when this comes to an end, you’ll see an increase in the amount you pay. At this point, it’s well worth shopping around to see what other offers are available. Sometimes, your existing provider will be able to switch you to a better rate but, if not, other utility companies are likely to offering better introductory rates.
By using comparison websites to find the best deals, you can shave hundreds of pounds off your annual utility bills in seconds. In addition to this, most utility companies will handle the switch for you, so there will be no inconvenience or service disruption to worry about.
4. Pay Down Your Debts
The vast majority of people have some form of debt, but high interest rates can leave you floundering when it comes to your finances. Australians have one of the largest debt-to-household ratios in the world, which indicates that many people are likely to be paying over the odds in interest and charges.
Although some forms of debt, such as a mortgage, can be manageable over the long-term, other types of debt can be trickier to deal with. If you’re making minimum repayments on a high interest credit card, for example, the total amount you owe could actually be increasing over time.
To prevent your debts eating into your household budget, talk to your creditors and try to negotiate a lower interest rate or more favourable repayment terms. Then, reassess your budget to determine how quickly you can pay high interest debts off. By doing so, you’ll free up a considerable amount of your budget and be able to re-route it elsewhere.
Managing Your Household Finances
Dealing with money issues can feel overwhelming at times, particularly if you have a large amount of debt. However, taking control of your finances can give you a new lease of life and put you back in control. With plenty of free, independent advice available, you can access professional assistance to help you get back on track too.
By reducing your household budget and slashing the cost of your bills, you can free up your funds and use them however you choose. From buying a new car, to taking a holiday or investing in your future, redirecting your cash can give you the freedom to live your dream lifestyle.