Top five cost-cutting websites

Stretching your budget to cover bills can be a challenge and it’s often easy to fall behind on one or two payments. These five websites will help you cut household costs.

Power bills
After mortgage payments and rent, utility bills probably take up the majority of a household’s budget. Many utility companies will offer you a significant discount, 16 per cent in some cases, if you’re willing to sign a two or three year contract, and some offer a discount for having both gas and electricity accounts with them. Shopping around can also save you money and comparison websites which do the work for you are a good place to start.

Saving on water bills
As most states and territories have just one water supplier, shopping around to save money is a challenge. However, you can ensure you are getting the concession to which you are entitled by contacting your water supplier and registering your concession card. Saving money by reducing your water usage is also possible and just a few simple measures taken around the house can see your bills fall.

Don’t pay more for health insurance
Recent changes to the means testing of the Government’s Private Health Insurance rebates and an increase in the Medicare Levy Surcharge have made many people reconsider the need for health insurance. Reviewing the level of cover you actually require and getting the most affordable premium can make paying health insurance premiums more palatable.

Getting what you pay for
Are you really getting the broadband download speeds for which you are paying? Check if the speed of your connection is as it should be. Or are you paying for a service you’re not really using? Compare your actual usage against your billed usage and find out if there’s a better package which suits your needs.

Keeping your bills under control
If you find yourself paying bills late each month and incurring late payment fees, then using a bill payment service can help you keep your budgeting on track. Centrelink offer Centrepay for paying utility bills, rent, payments for rental goods, ambulance costs, home care services and medical services. You advise Centrelink how much you wish to be paid to each business or organisation and they will withhold this amount from your benefit and pay the bills on your behalf at no extra cost to you. This service can great reduce your financial stress and ensure you don’t fall into debt unknowingly.

Written by Debbie McTaggart