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Whether you are saving to buy your first home, or add another investment property to your portfolio, finding smart ways to save money is always a positive thing.

Think you can’t boost your savings? Think again. A careful exploration of your bank statements will remind you what you are spending and what you can do to trim some of your discretionary expenditure.

Trim the fat

If you are one of those impulse buyers who gets tempted by a chocolate bar treat or pack of chewing gum each time you fill your car with petrol, you’ll be adding a few dollars to your petrol spend – not to mention some added calories to your body. By avoiding those so-called specials at the counter, you could save a couple of hundred dollars a year and feel fitter as well.

Stick to one coffee a day – or less

For many people, buying a take-away coffee each day is part of their feel-good ritual that gets them out of the house – and caffeinated. But what if you swapped your fancy barista-made coffee for a cheaper one at your local 7-11? Or you made that craving for take-away coffee even more special by reducing it to every second day? Trimming your spend on caffeine seems like a small thing but with a few adjustments, you might find you could save as much as $20-$40 a week, simply by reducing your intake to just one coffee a day, or less. Over a full year, those savings add up and by having an added $1000-$2000 in your annual savings budget, you could possibly take care of a monthly mortgage payment.

Rent out a room

If you already own your own home and are keen to pay off your mortgage faster, or use the equity to help you purchase an investment property, depending on the floor plan of your home and how many people share it with you, you may be happy to rent out some space in your home to a housemate.

As well as enjoying rental income, you may also be able to claim part (or all) of your mortgage’s interest payments back as tax deductions. Talk to your accountant to crunch the numbers before making the decision to ensure that this choice is a good one for you.

Refinance your home loan

The recent Reserve Bank decision to lower the cash rate to an all-time low has seen commercial lenders pass on savings to home loan customers – something that has seen many borrowers enjoying record low mortgage rates. Talking to an experienced mortgage broker will help you understand if you are in a good position to shop around for a better home loan deal and save.

Switch utility providers for a better deal

Making a decision to switch energy providers could mean measurable savings for your gas or electricity bills. If you’re not locked into fixed contracts, shopping around for a better deal on broadband, home phone and mobile phone coverage is also recommended. And with summer coming and the kids more inclined to play outdoors, than in, do you really need that pay-tv subscription? Consider taking a seasonal break over summer to reduce your outgoings and help you put more money where it really counts – on your existing mortgage or other debts, or towards a deposit for another property.

Shop from the ‘specials’ aisles

Saving money sometimes means saying goodbye to brand loyalty and being willing to try new things that might be on special for half the price you’d normally pay. If you’re not fussed about what shampoo, conditioner, soap, toilet paper or toothpaste you and your family use, shop the specials and save.

There are lots of things you can do to save small amounts of money from your household budget and, when they all add up, the results can be impressive. By thinking positively and focusing on the idea that every little bit really does count, you can find some extra money that could make the difference you need.

Before you’re ready to buy, talk to one of our professional home loan brokers at Lending Specialists to let us find the right mortgage for you.

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