A mother-of-two who saved a staggering $30,000 inside just 12 months has revealed the top six savings tips everyone should know.
Olivia White, from Melbourne, runs a busy household with two young children and a full-time business, but she said making time for saving and managing your cash flow is critical to future financial success.
Olivia said that while her financial goals have dramatically changed this year thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, she still puts into practice her goals and tries to say on track.
‘At the start of this year, we had several big travel plans in place, including a month-long trip to Europe, which obviously did not go ahead,’ Olivia posted on her blog.
‘Fast forward to now and we bought a new house, we’re renting our old house and saving for some big upgrades and renovations to our new home.’
A mother-of-two who saved a staggering $30,000 inside just 12 months has revealed the top six savings tips everyone should know (Olivia White pictured at home)
Olivia (pictured with her family) said that while her financial goals have dramatically changed this year thanks to the pandemic, she still puts into practice her goals and tries to say on track
1. Set your savings goals
Olivia said her first tip for managing your money is setting some savings goals, which will hold you accountable throughout the year.
‘I know some people don’t like to talk about money, but finding someone you trust and can help you remain accountable can be really helpful when you are falling off the wagon,’ Olivia said.
The 31-year-old added that writing down things can help you in your desire to save money, as can creating a mood board for your dreams and plans.
She said she uses the ANZ app to create and track her goals as you can name it, set your targets and take a photo, but you could also create a spreadsheet with various sheets for different goals.
Olivia (pictured) said her first tip for managing your money is setting savings goals, which will hold you accountable, and then make your money saving a habit and automatic
2. Make your saving money a habit
The second thing you need to do is make your money saving a habit, and a simple way to do this is to automate your cash.
‘I have the money I plan to save each week/month automatically distributed where it needs to go,’ Olivia said.
She does this with a pre-authorised transfer set up through her internet banking, so she can’t create any excuses before the money leaves her account and she is never able to forget about it.
Olivia said this tip has been helpful because she is able to save a little bit each week without even realising it.
The mum-of-two (pictured) said you need to prioritise your savings like a bill if you want to be successful with your money
3. Prioritise your savings like a bill
If you don’t prioritise your savings as you would a bill, you will never have anything to show for your money.
Olivia said you should start thinking of the money you save as a ‘utility you have to pay, like electricity or water’.
As soon as your pay comes in, separate off what you need for your rent and mortgage, the amount you need for your bills and then what you want to save.
4. Make sure your savings are out of reach
Hiding your savings from yourself is key to cutting down on impulse purchasing or thinking you have more money than you really do.
‘I did this by not having the account linked to my internet banking and no physical card access,’ Olivia said.
You could also move your savings money into an account that charges you if you make any withdrawals.
Olivia (pictured) said she makes a monthly budget and tracks every dollar she spends, before assessing her spending habits and cutting down or getting rid of unnecessary purchases
5. Assess your spending habits
If you want to be a good saver, assessing your spending habits is key.
Olivia said she makes a monthly budget and tracks every dollar she spends.
Then, once a month, she goes through the budget and assesses where she’s spending her cash, so she can reign in any unnecessary purchases.
Anything that can be reduced or cut back entirely is highlighted, so Olivia knows exactly where she is overspending.
6. Find extra ways to make money
Finally, the mum-of-two said she also looks for ways to make an income outside of her main job.
Olivia’s favourites are selling her second-hand items, taking up small side hustles like filling out surveys or helping out others with odd jobs here and there.
‘Finding ways to make money over and above your known income means you have extra cash to add to your savings,’ she said.
Olivia (pictured) famously saved $30,000 inside one year, after she and her husband set themselves the goal of amassing the figure in order to build a new shed and study
Olivia famously saved $30,000 inside one year, after she and her husband set themselves the goal of amassing the figure in order to build a new shed and study.
How did Olivia White save $30,000 in one year?
1. Put all household expenses on a spreadsheet
2. Plan meals for the week before heading to the supermarket (either in store or online groceries)
3. Paid bills weekly
4. Adopted a ‘side hustle’
5. Stopped making comparisons
Olivia reached her goal via a few lifestyle tweaks, including using spreadsheets and logging every expense in her family, planning the meals her family would eat and shopping accordingly.
She said she managed to get her supermarket bill for her family of four to just $140 per week.
Elsewhere, Olivia worked out a weekly/fortnightly payment for all the utilities – electricity, gas, water and rates – and paid that via direct debit each week.
She said this allowed them to keep their bills in credit and prevented any ‘bill shock’ or large amounts of money leaving their account at any one time.
The fourth step was adopting a ‘side hustle’ for extra money.
Ideas she came up with included small side businesses, selling clothing on eBay or selling unwanted items on Gumtree or Facebook marketplaces.
The final thing Olivia said was key to their saving success was never comparing themselves to other families.
‘Especially in the age of social media and the constant bombardment of everyone’s lives in your feed. It can be easy to get caught up and think you want/need something just because you see what someone else has,’ she said.