This is a sponsored guest post. Words by Sophie Ryan, iSelect Spokesperson
As we welcome in a new year, many of us may be thinking about our list of resolutions for 2023. Exercise more, lose weight, quit smoking. They’re some common goals of years gone by, but perhaps this time, reducing your cost of living may be higher on your agenda as many household budgets are feeling the financial pinch.
Perhaps you cut down on your festive season spending in 2022 to save some money. You’re not alone! In fact, recent research commissioned by comparison service iSelect found more than half of Aussies surveyed (58 per cent) said they’d be taking steps to reduce Christmas spending in 2022 given the increased cost of living.
But as we settle into 2023, you might want to consider reviewing some other common household expenses. Why? Because doing so could save you money, either immediately or perhaps further down the track. Read on as we list the bills to review and how you could save.
Prepared for the unexpected?
When it comes to weather, Australian summers are something else! If you’re a new Aussie resident, you may not be used to the heat, storms, floods, fires (and even the cyclones!) many of us experience around this time of the year.
That’s why in the land down under, you may want to consider whether your home and/or its contents are adequately insured if disaster was to strike. If not, you could be caught out at claim time and potentially face higher out-of-pocket expenses. Nobody wants that! You may think you’re automatically covered for these kinds of events if you hold a policy, but it depends on your Product Disclosure Statement and what is covered and what’s excluded. So go through it carefully, and make sure you’re adequately covered.
Cranking the air-con this summer?
In 2022, energy became less affordable for Aussies and power bills are expected to soar even higher in 2023 for many. If you’ve been blasting the air-con recently, you could experience some significant shock when that summer bill hits your e-mail inbox (or your letterbox, if that’s your thing).
When it comes to air-conditioning, one of the top tips to help reduce your energy bill is to make sure you set your cooling between 25°C and 27°C. For every degree drop, you increase energy use between 5 and 10 per cent. While there are other simple changes you can make around the home to help reduce your energy consumption, it’s also a great idea to review and compare your energy plan to make sure you’re on a suitable deal.
While there may be fewer options to choose from as retailers navigate a volatile wholesale market, there are still price differences to be found between plans and providers and in the current economic climate, every dollar saved counts and that could make switching well worth it.
Consider a New Year health check
If you’re a permanent resident or new Australian citizen and have a health insurance policy, that’s great! But are you worried about the cost of your premiums? Most of the country’s biggest funds increased their prices on November 1st 2022, while Medibank/ahm is set to increase their premiums on January 16, 2023, at this stage.
If your premium recently increased (or is about to), don’t simply accept the higher price! Consider comparing your current policy against a range of others to see if you can save money or find better value.
So there’s your list of common household bills and expenses you could review as 2023 gets underway, potentially helping reduce your costs during the year. And if you’re feeling overwhelmed by this list, help is out there! A comparison service such as iSelect* can help you try to find a better deal on your energy plan, home and/or contents insurance, or your health insurance policy. And if you do decide to switch, they’ll help you take care of the whole process, saving you time and effort.
*iSelect does not compare all products in the market. The availability of products iSelect compare may change from time to time. Not all products made available from iSelect’s providers are compared by iSelect and due to commercial arrangements, area or availability, not all products compared by iSelect will be available to all customers. Some products and special offers may only be available from iSelect’s call centre or website.
Any advice provided by iSelect is of a general nature and does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. You need to consider the appropriateness of any information or general advice iSelect gives you, having regard to your personal situation, before acting on iSelect’s advice or purchasing any policy. You should consider iSelect’s Financial Services Guide which provides information about our services and your rights as a client of iSelect. iSelect receives commission for each policy sold.
Source: iSelect commissioned i-Link Research to conduct a national online survey between 4 November and 10 November 2022. The sample is n=1,000 Australians 18+ years, with data weighted to represent the population by age, state and gender, and is representative of all Australian adults 18+
 Source: Page 6 of this report: https://www.aer.gov.au/system/files/State%20of%20the%20energy%20market%202022%20-%20Full%20report.pdf & Page 57 of https://budget.gov.au/2022-23-october/content/bp1/download/bp1_bs-2.pdf