Fewer than one in five people will take this key step to grow their New Year savings.

It looks like 2021 is going to be a big year for personal savings. New research by industry super fund-owned – ME Bank shows almost one in two Aussies plan to grow ‘rainy day’ savings this year. One in five are saving to buy a home, and over one-third of us are tucking cash away to save for a car or holiday.

All these plans for saving are good news. The catch is that saving is harder than spending. It calls for commitment and discipline, and it’s not always easy to stay on track. That’s why the secret to successful saving is to make a habit of it, and it becomes a lot easier if you start with one simple step.

Have a plan to follow

Drawing up a budget is a smart way to kick off a savings plan. A budget shows where you can cut costs, how much you can save on a regular basis, and lets you set spending limits while still enjoying life.

Yet ME’s survey found only 16% of Australians intend to set up a budget as part of their New Year money goals. That means plenty of savers are missing the critical piece of the puzzle that can make building a cash pool easy.

Sure, you could bump along without a money plan. But with a budget lined up, you’re in the driver’s seat of your finances, and you’re ready to roll with your personal savings.

Even better, budgeting doesn’t have to be dull. We’ve lined up some tips to spice things up.

  1. Go digital

If you’re handy with numbers, a pen and paper are all you need to draw up a budget. Or it can be a lot easier (with much less crossing out) if you use an online budgeting tool. Check out the free Budget Planner on the ME website – the built-in calculators give you the flexibility to play around with the numbers.

  • Keep it real

A spending app is a handy way to know where your money really goes and stay on track with daily spending. Better still, tracking your spending can make you more aware of those little-but-often spends that gobble up cash – money that could go towards growing savings.

  • Make it fun

A budget shouldn’t take the joy out of life. You should still be able to enjoy your money while building savings – and let’s face it, no one is going to stick to a budget that involves living on baked beans. So include fun things in your budget, and allow some pocket money for day-to-day treats.

With a budget in place you’re on the right track to reach your savings goals. Remember, even small amounts can hit big targets over time. Tuck away just $3 a day in 2021, and you could accumulate savings worth over $1,000 by year’s end!

Members Equity Bank Limited ABN 56 070 887 679 AFSL and Australian Credit Licence 229500.

Date Published: 03/02/2021 Category: Member Benefits

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