Savvy Savings Tips

If you're saving for a mortgage an extra €3,000 a year would probably go a long way to reaching your savings goal. If you focus on what you're spending and make a few adjustments it can really make a difference to your bank balance - Maurice McGee

Most of us don't think we have the time to compare all the companies that provide us with gas, fuel, TV, insurance, electricity, broadband and mobile phone services. But it's actually easy  (and not very time-consuming) to do it all online with special websites that make comparing and switching easy.

And then all you have to do is be a bit more organised about your expenses. Then pour all the money you save (plus whatever else you can afford) into a regular savings account. In a year, you could be mortgage-ready!

Read on for a few tips to get you going.

Kill bills

Shopping around for the best gas and electricity prices can save you €321 a year, according to Bonkers.ie. And the same site reckons you can cut another €300 off your bills for broadband/TV deals.

Potential annual saving: €621.

Waste not

The average household literally chucks €700 in the bin every year.

That's the amount of food we throw out because it's left over or past its sell-by date. Four fifths of this is avoidable waste. So we can save €560 a year - and help the environment - by being a bit more careful in how we cook and shop.

Check out the Safefood.eu for lots of tips on how to cut your food bills.

Potential annual saving: €560

Car costs

Cut your petrol costs by smarter driving and shopping around for fuel. Even an average car would burn up around €2,000 a year over 30,000km.

But we can save 5c a litre just by shopping around for petrol, according to the National Consumer Agency. That would knock €127 a year off our bills.

We can easily save another 10% - or €200 - by smarter driving. That's how much simple driving-efficiency tips saves the average motorist, according to research by the Automobile Association.

It found that some canny drivers even managed to cut their fuel bills by up to a third - potentially saving over €600 every year.

The tips are can be found in full on the AA website.

Potential annual savings: €727

Insure savings

A 25-year-old driver could save €625 a year on motor insurance, a 2013 survey by the National Consumer Agency found. Make a note of when your insurance is up for renewal and start comparing prices online a month earlier. In some cases you can save money on your insurance if you included a name driver on your policy. Also make sure you are not over estimating the resale value of your car as this could drive costs up. 



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