By Dave Kavanagh
Making a little time occasionally to go through your finances and budgeting, can be very rewarding and leave you with more money left over each month. A few practical tips:
Carefully study 3 months’ bank statements. Make sure that you can account for every single trans-action. On a regular basis, I encounter people who have been paying for things that they should not be, direct debits they forgot to cancel.Make a detailed list for grocery shopping (and don’t shop while hungry). This leads to only buying what you actually need, a lower bill at the till and less throwing out of food gone off.Compare before you shop for larger items. Just because one store has a fridge you want reduced from €950 to €850 in their “Sale”, does not mean another store nearby that does not currently have a sale on, is not selling the same one for €799. Compare utility providers. Whether it’s electricity, gas, broadband, mobile phone service or similar, there can be substantial savings to be had by switching to better deals. Check when car/house insurance renew-als arrive. Don’t automatically accept a renewal premium without checking around. A few phone calls could save you hundreds of euro.Review premiums on life cover/mortgage protection/serious illness cover. Especially if you arranged it directly with a bank or insurance company that could not compare.In over 20 years of helping people with their finances, I have never seen anyone NOT make savings by doing the above. If anyone would like the free budget spreadsheet in excel format that will calculate totals as you input them, just email email@example.com with Budget in the subject line. Happy saving!
Dave Kavanagh QFA has been advising people financially for over 25 years. For quotes or information (with no cost or obligation) he can be contacted by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or use the contact form on www.financialcompanion.ie or phone 087-6414570, or @Davekav_advice on Twitter and Instagram. Combined with his previous role of gym/nutrition adviser, he regularly gives talks and workshops at seminars and events for groups, companies and government departments on financial wellbeing, positivity and motivation. As heard on RTE 2FM and TV3.