Money

Shop around for financial products

Paul Clitheroe
Paul Clitheroe

RECENT research by ING DIRECT found Australians are cashing in their personal possessions in a bid to boost income. One in ten of us sold some household items over the last year, with more planning to do so in the future.

Selling stuff on eBay or through a garage sale can be a short term money spinner. A 2011 survey by online classifieds site Gumtree for instance, found the average household has almost $4,000 worth of unwanted items.

The trouble is, there's only so much of the family silver you can sell off. If you're serious about putting money back in your pocket, a more lasting solution is to have a look at some of the household's key financial products to check that you're getting the best deal. Shopping around can generate valuable savings each year, which can be worth a lot more than a one-off cash boost.

On a major debt like your mortgage for instance, slicing just a fraction off the interest rate with a cheaper loan can mean big savings on monthly repayments.

The way we manage credit cards can also make a difference to our hip pockets. Sticking to the minimum monthly repayments may seem like a budget-friendly option but take a look at your monthly statement to see how much this is costing you in interest charges.

With card rates averaging around 15% - and plenty charging more than 20% - you could be paying $600 each year in interest on a card balance of, say, $3,000.  With our national credit card debt exceeding $50 billion, aiming to pay off as much as you can off the card each month makes good financial sense. Or switch over to a cheaper no-frills card to secure a lower rate.

On the other side of the ledger, a simple way to earn more on your savings is by comparing the deposit rates offered by different financial institutions.

Around 80% of investors with a term deposit simply roll over their savings with the same financial institution once the deposit matures. Many of these people end up earning a miserly interest rate.

In fact, financial comparison website RateCity says Australians are collectively missing out on an extra $4 billion in interest earnings each year because we don't chase higher rate deposits.

If you have a term deposit, make a calendar note of when the investment will mature and allow yourself time to compare the rates available with other financial institutions. For the sake of completing a 100-point identity check with a new financial institution, you could find yourself earning a more generous return on your money.

For large, infrequent costs like home or car insurance, compare policies and premiums rather than just renewing your existing policy. A recent study by research group Canstar found that for some drivers, especially younger motorists aged below 25, the cost of car cover has dropped by up to 13% in the last year.

For more ideas on regaining control of your money and shopping around for the best deal, take a look at my book Making Money.

Paul Clitheroe is a founding director of financial planning firm ipac, chairman of the Australian Government Financial Literacy Board and chief commentator for Money magazine. Visit www.paulsmoney.com.au for more information.

Topics:  finances paul clitheroe



How to survive a bushfire in your car

IT SOUNDS like a nightmare, but it can happen.

Eight reasons to join the RFS

SPREAD across 93% of Queensland, the Rural Fire Service has about 36,000 volunteers. And you could be one of them.

What if my insurer gives me grief?

CLAIMING your insurance cover after a natural disaster can go one of two ways. It can be a breeze, or like pulling teeth.

Beloved Scots PGC teachers say farewell

SAD FAREWELL: Noela Ensbey, Lou Keevers and Liz Bowen have left their legacy at Scots PGC.

THREE of Scots PGC College's teachers have hung up their hats.

Yangan artist paints pretty picture with a can

PAINT PRODIGY: Jessica Welsh uses spray paint and tools to make her art.

Artist Jessica Welsh is proving there's no age limit to innovation.

VIDEO: Driver arrested after Killarney crash

Police say they have some questions for her.

Local Partners

Smart new app for learner drivers

A BRAND new smartphone app could make getting a licence a lot safer and easier for learner drivers across the nation.


Creekside Carols are all set to thrill Allora crowd

Chad Wilson, Sarah and Stacey Turner, Greta Barton and Jo Denny at the Allora's Creekside Carols under the Stars   



Photo Deanna Millard / Daily News

ALLORA'S Creekside Carols are on tomorrow night

Events you need to be at this week...

Warwick Volleyball Ladies grand finalists Grinners (back, from left) Lisa Bergemann, Rachel King and Allyne Waters (front) Awesome team members Emma Lowe, Lydia Wallace and Mandy Aspinall after the first season finals this year.

Touch, volleyball and cricket have major events in the next week

Mitchell Shield between Warwick and Stanthorpe

LOCAL DERBY: Stanthorpe captain Ben Staley with the Hendry Bourke Trophy for cricket supremacy between Warwick and Stanthorpe after a victory at Slade Park two years ago.

Warwick will host Stanthorpe in local derbies

Jennifer Lawrence gives keys to new partner

Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence

Oscar winner settling down with new partner

Rogue One star proud to lead new Star Wars film

Felicity Jones leads the new Star Wars film

Star Wars lead proud to be in front in sci-fi

What's on the small screen this week

Ernie Dingo stars in the TV series Going Places with Ernie Dingo.

ERNIE Dingo stars in a new travel series and Seven airs the AACTAs.

Mandy Moore feels like she's 60

Mandy Moore sees herself as a 60-year-old rather than a 32-year-old

Goooodbye Hamish and Andy (from our radios)

Hamish and Andy

The pair have been on air since 2006

David Attenborough on facing his mortality

Sir David Attenborough in a scene from the TV special The Death of the Oceans.

Life without Sir David Attenborough is hard to imagine

INSIDE STORY: Disused pipeline stops hundreds from building

TRAIL OF TEARS: Route of the disused Santos oil pipeline which is stopping hundreds of Ipswich residents from building.

Santos responds but Tully says easements issue must be addressed

Chinese locked out of Australian property market

The rules are different if you're a foreigner

The buyer was from China - the trouble started right there

Morrison signs off on new affordable rental model

Australia's Treasurer Scott Morrison speaks during a press conference after a meeting of the Council of Federal Financial Relations at Parliament House in Canberra, Friday, Dec. 2, 2016.

Scott Morrison signed off on development of a new financing model

Evicted from their own land: red tape tangles up family's plans

HOME WOES: Carl Murray says his family was evicted from their own property.

Owning their own land wasn't the biggest hurdle for this family

Coast high-flyer's fight back from bankruptcy, $72m debt

Scott Juniper went from millionaire developer to declaring bankruptcy in2012, now he is back on top of his game again with new developments including this one in Coolum.

'Apocalyptic lending storm' causes financial collapse.

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!