Are Australians good at saving money?

Most Aussies consider themselves to be at least somewhat financially savvy, yet good saving habits remain a constant challenge, according to The 2019 Choosi Dollar Report.

In surveying 5,000 members of the public in various age groups about their spending and saving habits, we discovered that money worries and concerns about unexpected events are common for all Aussies no matter what their age, gender, or financial position is.

Findings for spending habits in Australia

Many people live by particular spending and savings benchmarks, such as a budgeting strategy like the 50/30/20 rule, or the rule that in order to enjoy a comfortable retirement, you should have the equivalent of one years’ salary saved when turning 30, and 3 times your salary when turning 40.

But what do everyday Aussies really care about when it comes to their finances? The 2019 Choosi Dollar Report uncovered some insightful takeaways:

  • Saving is a constant challenge for most Aussies
  • Men are more likely to say they’re confident in their financial decision-making, while females are more likely to rely on ‘savings hacks’
  • Generational differences influence our financial confidence, knowledge, and budgeting goals

Everyone wants to have more money in their savings account, but what’s the best way to get started? Here are a few tips that could help you build your financial confidence:

Tip #1: Create a personal budget and stick to it!

It’s one of the most popular New Year’s resolutions, but budgeting shouldn’t be seen as something annoying or boring. On the contrary, creating and sticking to a budget can actually help you achieve your financial and lifestyle goals faster.

Despite this, less than a quarter (22.1%) of Aussies have a documented budget and track their spending habits, while almost half (42.7%) don’t have any sort of budget at all, according to the 2019 Choosi Dollar Report.

You can make your life easier and your long-term goals more attainable by putting together a personal budget today. Sure, you can go the pen-and-paper route or knock something up in an Excel spreadsheet, but why not use technology to your advantage?

There are some fantastic online planners and smartphone apps that make budgeting super simple and also send you friendly reminders about your financial goals. You can also use your bank’s app, which will most likely include a dedicated budgeting tool.

Tip #2: Use tried-and-tested savings hacks

A few simple savings hacks can help motivate you to stash away that extra cash more regularly. According to the 2019 Choosi Dollar Report, some of the most popular hacks include:

  • Maintaining focus on what you want to spend your money on, i.e. your ultimate goal
  • Setting up an auto-direct debit straight into your savings account
  • Using savings apps regularly
  • Getting an ‘accountability buddy’ to help commit to your goals
  • Having a competition with family and friends about who can save the most

As you start to approach your savings habits with more purpose, you’ll likely stumble across some new savings hacks that work best for you.

Tip #3: Recognise your barriers to saving

Like any long-term goal, being a good saver isn’t always easy. Slipping back into bad habits, ignoring your budget or falling off the budgeting bandwagon entirely are common, and not at all a reflection on your ability to save well.

According to respondents in our 2019 Choosi Dollar Report, the key is to recognise the greatest barriers to saving so you can understand (and ultimately avoid) them. Common barriers to saving include:

  • Lack of money
  • Impulsive spending
  • Poor discipline
  • No budget
  • Bad habits and routines

You can only start to overcome these barriers once you accept that they’re stopping you from reaching your financial goals.

While you’re getting into healthy savings habits, it’s the perfect time to review your insurance policies to ensure you’re getting the coverage you need. Choosi can help you compare a range of policies in the market.