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The 7 Habits of Great Savers
By Tammy Barton

Are you a great saver? If you have any money at all in the bank, you’re off to a great start. Nearly one-in-seven Australians, equivalent to a staggering 2.6 million people, have no cash reserves to fall back on. Part of the challenge is that Australians have one of the highest costs of living in the world and housing, an essential living expense, is especially expensive. So, how do you develop a cash safety net when it feels like all your money is taken up by living expenses? It turns out that people who are great at saving money all practice these seven habits.

1. Great savers have financial goals


Great savers have specific goals for their money and these goals positively influence their daily money habits and choices. When they feel tempted to spend beyond their budget, their saving goals are a reminder of the future gratification awaiting them, which makes it easier to stay focused and resist temptation. They also know that having a mix of small goals (eg. saving for a concert ticket) and big goals (eg. saving for a house) is a good way to stay motivated.

2. Great savers have a budget in place


Great savers understand that the way to supercharge their financial fitness is to combine the benefits of goal setting (focusing on a clear, specific destination) with the benefits of budgeting (creating a detailed plan). For that reason, they have no problem saying “I can’t afford it” if an expense goes outside of their budget. Great savers also recognise that their savings may start out small, but over time they’ll grow into a cash safety net for emergencies or go towards special projects or events, such as date nights, holidays or a home deposit.

3. Great savers keep their savings separate


One of the tricks to saving money is to never let your savings touch your pocket or get muddled up with your spending money. Great savers have a dedicated bank account for their savings so that their cash reserves are kept separate from the money they use for living expenses and bills. The harder it is to access the account, the better.

4. Great savers automate their savings


Great savers turn saving into an automatic habit by letting their bank or employer do the work for them. Once you’ve got a dedicated bank account, set up an automatic transfer so that a portion of every pay is deposited directly into it. The payroll administrator at your work can set up the disbursement for you or you can schedule the transfer to occur automatically between your accounts.

5. Great savers know that cents add up to dollars


It’s a common misconception that you need a high income to be able to save. But for the majority of people, the ability to save is more affected by how much they spend than how much they earn. If you’re finding it hard to save regularly, it pays to look at your spending habits and identify areas to make changes. Great savers know, for example, that making their lunch at home instead of buying it every day could save them around $4000 a year — money they’d rather put towards a holiday, new car or other goal.

6. Great savers value financial independence and security


As well as saving for the things you want, another motivation to save is to avoid financial hardship. Great savers understand that living week-to-week without savings to fall back on can make you vulnerable to financial stress. When unexpected bills come up, which they invariably do, people without savings are more reliant on credit cards or loans to make ends, whereas savings are a foundation for financial independence and economic security.

7. Great savers expect more from their money


Great savers appreciate that saving may not be an exciting conversation topic, but achieving your financial goals is. It’s not about the money, it’s about the options that a cash safety net represents. It’s about managing your money consciously to achieve the type of life you want to live!

Are you ready to expect more from your money?

Contact us on 1300 300 922 to book your free personal budgeting consultation. One of our caring specialists can help to design a customised plan for your finances that reveals how far your money can really go.

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