Useful Savings Tips Saving money should be easy and fun. Once you have defined your goals and established a realistic budget, you may now start looking at ways to actually save money. Steps to sorting your finances 1. Debt - Clear all of it. Any interest charges you may incur on loans and credit-cards will most likely cancel out any interest you earn on your savings. 2. Budgeting - Think about where, how and why you are spending your money. You’ll realise that there are a number of occasions where you’re making unnecessary purchases. Identify those areas and cut down these expenses. Start adding this spare money to a savings account. 3. Targets – Limit yourself by setting a maximum spend in different areas such as food, transport or fuel, bills, clothing and entertainment. You'll be amazed how much you spend when you add it all up. 4. Spare Money - If you receive an extra sum of money which you didn’t expect, such as a work bonus or an inheritance, think about putting a large portion of it into your savings account, or in a long-term deposit to ward away any temptation to spend it immediately. 5. Saving habit - Adopt a savings routine by setting up a standing order for your savings account. You may instruct your bank to transfer money weekly, fortnightly or monthly. Don’t worry if it is a small amount, every Euro counts. Make your money work harder for you Do you know the interest rate on your savings account? If the answer is no, you should take the time to find out and look for a high-interest savings account. Invest some time and find the right savings account to make your money work harder for you and achieve your savings goals as quickly as possible. Short-Term Savings Tips Benefit from packages that help you save, such as telecommunication bundles or gym membership subscriptions instead of paying per session Use credit responsibly Shop around for a better deal on your home or car insurance Bring your lunch to work Cook dinner at home versus going out or buying takeaway food Plan ahead by looking out for special deals or offers when travelling abroad Save fuel by walking instead of driving all the time Look out for deals, offers and coupons when shopping Make a shopping list when buying groceries so you won’t end up buying unnecessary items Look out for government schemes, for example when looking for post-graduate programmes Travel during low seasons whenever possible to avoid expensive accommodation in peak seasons or sign up to newsletters to benefit from flight sales Disclaimer: This information is general advice only and does not constitute any recommendation or personal advice. It has been prepared without taking account of your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider obtaining personalised advice from a certified financial adviser and your accountant before making any financial decisions in relation to the matters discussed on this website. This is current at the time of publication (2 May 2014), and is subject to change.