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A budget-saving exercise

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Moving house is a good time to check over all your monthly expenses to ensure you’re getting the best deals.

Packing up and moving to a new home almost always means parting with things one no longer needs or has room for. It also presents people with the perfect opportunity to streamline their household budgets.

Careful planning and assessment of the family’s financial health before making the decision to buy a new home lays the foundation for a fine-tuned cost-saving strategy.

So, says Berry Everitt, CEO of the Chas Everitt International property group, all that is still needed is the commitment to keep looking for ways to cut down on expenses.

“For example, when you arrange to pay the new water, lights, telephone and other service accounts, that’s a good time to ensure you are getting the best deals possible. There are obviously limited options with municipal rates, but it is worth checking if savings are to be made by installing a prepaid electricity meter, or perhaps some ‘green’ options such as a solar geyser or a rainwater tank.

“Some banks will even finance these improvements via your home loan.” It may also be a good time to review phone, cell phone and data usage.

“Your new home might enable you to connect to the Internet via fibre instead of ADSL, for example, and to make greater use of wi-fi instead of expensive mobile data. Or you may decide that you no longer need a landline.”

Moving house is a good time to re-evaluate your budget. Picture: Supplied

People should also shop around for the best rates on their homeowners’ insurance as they will be obliged to have this insurance if they have a home loan.

“But you do not have to take the cover offered by the same bank that is providing your loan. Several short-term insurance companies now offer home-owner’s insurance bundled with your car and contents cover.”

And moving to a more secure home might enable you to negotiate lower premiums on short-term cover.

Writing in the Property Signposts newsletter, Everitt says home owners should check if local security companies offer special rates, and whether they have the best banking package.

This type of expenditure review may seem like a lot of work, but Everitt says it should not take more than a couple of weeks – and the savings should “more than make up for the effort”.



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