With the cost of energy, food and fuel on the rise, people's finances may come under pressure like never before over the coming year. That's why it's more important than ever to switch and save on your bills to put some money back into your pocket.
At bonkers.ie we know that switching saves. Yet every year people pay more than they need to by not switching. But with inflation on the rise and an international energy crisis underway, if ever there were a time to ensure you're getting the best value, now is that time.
So here’s our guide on how to compare prices, switch provider and save big on your most common household bills to help keep your finances in shape over the coming challenging months.
1. Compare and switch gas and electricity suppliers
As the war in Ukraine continues to add fuel to the fire that is the ongoing crisis in global energy markets, it’s inevitable that this will have a knock-on effect on households' gas and electricity bills, not to mention the price we pay at the pumps! However, this doesn’t have to be the case, because the good news is that you could save over €500 a year just by switching your gas and electricity provider.
That’s because most of Ireland’s energy suppliers offer discounted rates to brand new customers as a sign-up incentive. However, these deals usually expire after 12 months. At this stage, if you don’t switch, your supplier will revert your plan to standard pricing and you’ll pay more for the exact same service.
Switching gas and electricity supplier is super quick and easy. All you need to switch is your GPRN and MPRN (which can be found on your gas and electricity bills), a recent meter reading and an estimate of how much energy you use each year. And if you're switching on bonkers.ie and can’t find the key to open your meter box, let us know and we’ll send one out to you. you can read our guide here on how to switch gas and electricity suppliers.
Around 25,000 people switch electricity supplier, and 10,000 switch gas supplier, every month, so why not join them! It's quick and easy to switch and can all be done online in a few minutes.
2. Switch broadband, phone & TV provider
A good broadband connection and a decent TV and video-on-demand streaming package has become almost like a utility in recent times, especially over the past two years. With our reliance on broadband and quality content only growing, it's important to be getting value for your money.
However, staying connected online and up-to-date with the latest TV shows is by no means cheap, with the average bill for these services now costing over €100 a month. More if you include a sports package. However there are huge savings to be made by shopping around and switching. That’s because, like energy providers, broadband, phone and TV providers save their best deals for brand new customers and regularly offer half-price incentives for six months or more to entice customers to switch.
And the good news is that bonkers.ie lets you easily compare speeds, prices, channels and offers from all of Ireland’s main providers. You can also search for broadband-only deals or packages with phone and TV, whatever best fits your needs. And once you’ve found the right deal for you, you can place your order on our site in just minutes.
So if you’ve been with your current provider for more than a year or two, see what great offers are out there right now on bonkers.ie and put some more money back into your pocket.
3. Change current accounts
Banking fees for day-to-day card usage can quickly add up.
Some banks will charge you as much 20c for every chip and pin transaction, while others will charge you nothing.
And when you do need to withdraw cash, some of the main banks will charge you as much as 60 cent every time you do so.
Our current account comparison service lets you easily compare the different account features and charges from all of Ireland’s providers and will quickly show you what your monthly fees would be. Right now you could save up to €100 a year by switching to the bank with the lowest fees.
Worried about the hassle of switching? Rest easy - the Central Bank has in place a code of conduct for switching to make the process as easy as possible which all banks must comply with.
For more information, listen back to our podcast where we discuss what to consider when choosing a new current account.
4. Switch your mortgage
Your mortgage is likely to be your biggest monthly expense for years so this is one bill that you don't want to overpay on!
And while this bill takes a bit more effort to switch, the possibility of rising interest rates from the European Central Bank means it's the perfect time to stop putting it on the long finger.
Our mortgage calculator lets you easily compare interest rates, offers and cashback incentives from all of Ireland’s mortgage lenders and will quickly show you what your monthly repayments would be. And once you’ve found the right deal for you, you can arrange a callback from one of our qualified mortgage advisors who can arrange your new mortgage.
So whether you’re a first-time buyer, a home mover, or looking to switch mortgage, we’ll take the hard work out of finding the best deal and could help you save hundreds of euro a month on your repayments.
Right now a mortgage holder who’s paying a rate of 4% with €250,000 and 20 years remaining on their mortgage could save between €225-€226 a month by moving to a 2.2% fixed rate. It's a no brainer! And even if you are on a lower, more competitive rate of 3.5% you could still save up to €150 a month by switching.
Of course, with house prices going up, the more equity you have in your home means you will have access to the even better rates, so see about switching!
5. Get cheaper mortgage protection and life insurance
Having adequate life insurance is all part of good financial planning. But that doesn't mean you have to pay more than you need to! So if you’re looking to save money on your life insurance costs, we can help.
Our comparison service lets you quickly and easily compare quotes from Ireland’s main insurance providers. Whether you’d like a single policy, a joint policy, or a policy with added benefits, we’ll search a wide range of policies across multiple insurers and produce a quote for you in just seconds. And once you’ve found the right policy for you, you can apply online on our site in just minutes.
And remember if you used to smoke and have been off the cigarettes for at least a year, you can apply to your insurance company to be put onto non-smoker rates, which could see the cost of your premium halved in some cases. Another reason to kick the habit!
6. Transfer your credit card balance
We all know that we should pay off our credit card bill in full at the end of every month. But nobody’s perfect! And with people's finances likely to be hit hard over the coming weeks and months, it's fair to say many people's credit cards will take a hammering.
So that's where switching comes in...
Most credit card providers have special introductory offers for those looking to switch, such as 0% interest on balance transfers and purchases for the first six to 12 months, which can be a great way to help you clear your existing credit card debt faster or to avoid paying interest on new purchases.
So check out our credit card comparison service. It lets you easily compare interest rates, balance transfer options, and card features from Ireland’s main credit card providers and will quickly show you where you can find the lowest interest rate and best switching deals.
7. Get cheaper home insurance
Making sure you have a comprehensive home insurance policy in place is one of the most important steps for any homeowner, but that doesn't mean you should overpay.
It’s quick and easy to sign up for a new policy on bonkers.ie and you could save hundreds on your annual premium in just a few minutes. And of course the service is entirely free.
8. Get cheaper car insurance
One thing we as consumers rarely stand for is an increase in our car insurance premium, so with the cost of living rising so drastically this year, no doubt many of you will be looking for better a better quote.
The good news is that at the beginning of the year we launched our very own car insurance service which allows you to get a direct discounted quote from insurers, helping you save money in minutes.
Before choosing a specific provider for your car insurance this year, you might want to read our guide where we answer some of the most common car insurance questions.
Switch with bonkers.ie today
The easiest money you’ll ever earn is the money that you’ve saved, as they say. So start switching on bonkers.ie today and enjoy spending your new found savings!