money tip of the day

money tip of the day


Take your dollar further with our very own lending specialist Michelle Kuskie, who is sharing her best money tips over the coming weeks. We hope Michelle's tips help you save more, spend less and work towards your financial goals for 2017.

Tip #1

Another festive season is done and dusted. And for many of us, the costs add up.There’s all the presents, plus the food, and often a holiday as well. A great idea is to set up a Christmas account that you pay money into all year. Even saving $20 a week means you’ll have $1000 put away for the Christmas festivities.

We've put together some tips on how to save for next Christmas now, to help set you up for a more relaxed Christmas in 2017. 

Tip #2

I’m a big believer in seeing the doctor for a regular health check. It also makes sense to check on your financial health as well.  The New Year is the perfect time to review your home loan, savings accounts, insurance, and even your phone and electricity plans.


Doing a financial health check can feel like an overwhelming task. To help get you started, we've put together a list of financial and service products you may like to consider in your financial health check. 

Tip #3

If you’re like me, then you’ll have lots of stuff around the house you just don’t use anymore. This time of year is perfect for doing a stocktake of what you no longer need, and looking to sell on sites like ebay or gumtree.  It’s a really easy way to find extra cash.


Get started on your decluttering and money-making venture now by reading our quick and easy 4-step guide to selling second hand stuff online

Tip #4

Many borrowers tend to take out a home loan then never check whether they’re still getting the best deal, even 10 years later. There are so many different types of loans from many different lenders now available, it’s a good idea to do a bit of shopping around, to see if there’s a better deal on offer. This could mean thousands a year in savings!


Researching and deciding on a loan product can be a daunting task. To help get yourself familiar with rates before you shop around why not take a moment and read one of our most popular blog posts, Interest rates explained in under 5 minutes. Visit our  Home Loan Hub or call our team on 13 14 22 for more information. 

Tip #5

How many of us sign up to a gym membership but only go there a few times? A simple thing to do at the start of the New Year is review all those things we’ve signed up for, to check whether they’re really needed. Maybe you’re not getting value out of that pay TV service or gym deal that looked so good at the start.


Looking for inspiration? To help get you on the road to saving more money this year head over to our blog where we've put together some really simple and easy ways to save money without really trying. 

Tip #6

If your family is anything like mine, you'll slowly gather a stack of pencils, pens, erasers and sharpeners in the home throughout the school year. So before ordering more, do a stock ake of what the kids already have around the home. That way you only buy what you really need. 

Tip #7

The cost of school uniforms can really add up - think summer, winter, sport, music. With some schools, buying particular items is mandatory. But others will allow basic things like plain shorts, jumpers, polos and track-pants you can get from the discount department stores. That's an easy way to stretch the school budget further.

Tip #8

When it comes to school uniforms, why buy new? Check whether your school has a second-hand uniform shop or even a uniform exchange. If not, check online shopping sites like eBay or Gumtree, or even buy-and-sell-sites on Facebook, to pick up a bargain. 



Tip #9

Why not take a team approach to finding great deals on your school book list? Just get together with a few other parents, and split up the list. Everyone then goes out to find the best prices for their items. Not only does this avoid the stress of chasing around multiple items, it's also an easy way to find bargains by buying in bulk. 

Check out more back to school tips in the blog posts below

How to save on back to school costs

3 ways to make back to school shopping easier

4 cheap and healthy school lunch ideas

How to save money on school uniforms and weekend wear for kids

How much do Aussie families spend on back-to-school costs?

How to teach kids the difference between needs and wants



Tip #10

Recently checked the interest rate on your credit card? Interest rates can range from around 11% right up to 20%. Right now, with many of us carrying a Christmas credit card hangover, a health check on your card might be a good idea. Ask your bank what rate you're paying, plus any other benefits you might get. Switching to a lower rate card could save you money. 

Tip #11

If you’re off on holidays, it’s a good idea to set up automatic payments for your bills and your credit cards.  That way you won’t miss any payments, so you can avoid late fees and keep a clean credit history.

If you're travelling overseas, have you thought about how you'll pay for things? Find out why people use travel money cards when overseas. 

Tip #12

If you’re travelling overseas, do some research on how you can access money and pay for purchases at your destination.  By taking a mix of foreign cash, a travel money card and a debit or credit card, you’ll be prepared for any situation.

Here's some more information to consider on the different ways you can access money and pay for things while overseas. While you're at it, find out why people use travel money cards when overseas. 

Tip #13

Let your bank know before you head overseas. This will help them identify potentially suspicious activity on your accounts. For example, if you’re travelling in Canada and a transaction takes place in Spain, your bank can flag this as suspicious.

Tip #14

Hopefully you won’t need it, but taking out travel insurance could save you a world of trouble. Do a bit of research first to ensure you get the right cover for your situation. Check what’s included and what’s not, depending on the activities you’re doing on your trip.

We've got lots more tips on how to pay for things while you're overseas and why people use travel money cards. If you're after insurance, check out more information on Heritage Bank's travel insurance

Tip #15

Understand the fees and charges on your credit cards before setting off. Paying for things in Australian dollars on your credit card may cost you more than you think. You might save money with a different way of paying, such as a travel money card.

Tip #16

A new car could be on your list this year, but it is important not to get yourself in too deep with the size of your car loan. As well as the loan repayments, think about ongoing costs like petrol, services, rego and insurance. If you can afford all that, the pay-off is the freedom that having your own car delivers. 

Check out more info on costs to consider when purchasing a car, and give our car loan calculator a go. The calculator helps you to estimate the true cost of owning a car. 

Tip #17

If you are thinking about applying for a personal loan in the future, here are some simple tips to improve your chances of approval. First, building up a strong savings record and not missing any regular payments on things like phone bills can go a long way towards showing your ability to service or repay a loan. Secondly, only apply for an amount that you can afford. 

As well as keeping up your regular savings plan, why not add a little more to your savings by cutting out one or two (or more!) costs you don't really need. For inspiration, check out our infographic on how to save without trying.

Tip #18

When banks advertise loans, they might often mention both a comparison rate as well as an interest rate. But what is a comparison rate? Put simply, a comparison rate is the combination of the actual interest rate on the loan, plus any extra fees and charges you might incur during the life of that loan. 

Check out one of our most popular blog posts, Interest rates explained in under 5 minutes, to help give a better understanding to what is meant by a variable rate, fixed rate, partially fixed or split loan, an introductory rate and a comparison rate. 

Tip #19

There are heaps of different loan types out there, so doing your homework to ensure you get the one that is suitable for your situation, is the first step. Ask your lender to explain the differences between variable, fixed, or partially fixed loans, as well as introductory rates. If there is anything that you don't understand, then always ask your lender, they will be more than happy to explain what it all means. 

Check out one of our most popular blog posts, Interest rates explained in under 5 minutesto help give a better understanding to what is meant by a variable rate, fixed rate, partially fixed or split loan, an introductory rate and a comparison rate. 

Tip #20

When looking at loans, it's often better to use the comparison rate as a guide, rather than the interest rate. That's because the comparison rate includes any extra fees and charges you will pay, so it's a truer indication of the actual loan cost. This can then help you to assess if the loan you are considering is appropriate and if your budget can support the loan. 

Check out one of our most popular blog posts, Interest rates explained in under 5 minutesto help give a better understanding to what is meant by a variable rate, fixed rate, partially fixed or split loan, an introductory rate and a comparison rate. 


Tip #21

When it comes to the approval end of applying for a personal loan, this is where the paperwork comes in. So it’s important to always thoroughly read through the terms and conditions first. They will detail the amount, the interest rate, fees and charges, the term of the loan, and repayment dates. If you don’t understand anything, ask your lender before signing.

Building up a strong savings record is a good way to improve your chances to have a personal loan approved. Check out our money saving hub for heaps of ideas and tips to improve your saving habits. 

Tip #22

Not all lenders are the same, so if a finance company offers you a loan rate that seems too good to be true, then be suspicious. Check that your lender has an Australian Credit licence, or is a representative of a company with an Australian Credit licence, and do further investigation into the terms of the loan for your own peace of mind.

ASIC's Moneysmart website is a great source for information about loan scams. Check out our blog to find out what scammers don't want you to know. 

Tip #23

You could save money on car insurance just because of your age. If no-one under the age of 30 drives your car, you could benefit from a cheaper premium. Many insurance companies offer increasing discounts for drivers aged 30 and above. Call your insurance company to check.

Keeping your car roadworthy and safe is really important. Check out our tips for keeping your car roadworthy and what costs to consider when purchasing a car.

Tip #24

Save money on your groceries by doing one weekly shop. Research by AusVeg's Project Harvest in 2015 showed that as a nation, we’re heading to the grocery stores three times a week.  Every time we shop adds temptation to spend more on things we don’t need. So do one big shop a week instead.


From selling stuff online, to negotiating on the purchase of your home like a pro, check out our savings hub for lots of hints and tips to grow your savings this year!


Tip #25

With many credit cards, if you pay off the amount owing in full by a certain date each month you won't pay interest and you'll avoid late fees. A great idea is to set up your account to automatically transfer money at the right time each month to your credit card account, to pay off what's owing.

It's important to understand how your credit card works so you can get the most out of it. Find out why people use credit cards and 5 things you need to know to help you avoid paying credit card interest and late fees


Tip #26

A home loan is one of the biggest financial commitments a person can make in their lifetime. And with this commitment comes the obvious question, ‘how can I save money on my repayments?’ One way to is to have an offset account attached to the loan. The amount held in this account is offset against the balance of your loan, directly affecting the amount you pay off your loan each month.

Read our post explaining what a mortgage offset account is and how it could work for you - there's a great example in the post. To find out what offset products we offer at Heritage visit the home loan hub

Tip #27

Following on from yesterday’s tip, we know offset accounts can help reduce the interest you pay on a home loan. A good idea is for people to have their salary paid straight into their offset account, and to also do all their transactions from there. This helps to keep as much money as possible in the offset account, which directly affects the amount being paid off the home loan each month.

Read our post explaining what a mortgage offset account is and how it could work for you - there's a great example in the post. To find out what offset products we offer at Heritage visit the home loan hub

Tip #28

Did you know that usually banks actually calculate interest on your home loan account balance daily, even though they might charge monthly? This is why it’s a good idea to keep as much money as possible in your mortgage offset account. The amount of money in an offset account directly affects the interest paid on a home loan. Overtime, this adds up and reduces the time it takes to pay off the home loan.

Read our post explaining what a mortgage offset account is and how it could work for you - there's a great example in the post. To find out what offset products we offer at Heritage visit the home loan hub

Tip #29

If you do have a mortgage offset account you might like to consider using a credit card for all your purchases, which will help to keep your money in your offset account longer. Then, pay off the credit card by the due date each month. Look into any fees and charges the card might charge you before signing up, as the key here is to save money by using the credit card.

Read our post explaining what a mortgage offset account is and how it could work for you - there's a great example in the post. To find out what offset products we offer at Heritage visit the home loan hub. Keeping money in your offset account longer is just one of the reasons people use credit cards, read more in our post, Why use a credit card

Tip #30

Doing your research and preparing to shop around is an important part of securing your dream home. What’s happening in the area you’re looking at buying in – what’s sold, for what price and how long did it take to sell? Sign up for real estate alerts and get friendly with local agents.  This research will help you understand the market before you decide to make an offer on a home.

Check out the home loan jargon you need to know, and 6 things every home buyer needs to know before making an offer on your dream property. 

Tip #31

Paying off more than the minimum repayments required on a home loan is a great way to save money and pay off your loan sooner. When interest rates go down, minimum payments can also reduce, but by maintaining your repayments at the same level at such times, borrowers will be paying more off their loan in a shorter amount of time, in turn saving money.

Check out the home loan jargon you need to know, and 6 things every home buyer needs to know before making an offer on your dream property. 

Tip #32

Tax time can be an exciting time if you’re expecting a tax return. Rather than splash the money about on things you don’t really need, consider using the money to help reduce your debt. By putting the money into a mortgage offset account, or by paying off some of your home loan, you’ll be paying less interest, paying off your loan sooner, and saving money.

Check out our article on saving your tax return wisely or getting the most out of your shopping spree for more tips to getting the most out of your tax return. 

Tip #33

It’s important to take the time to review your home loan to make sure you are getting the best deal possible. You might be able to negotiate a deal with your bank, or you may find that switching banks is your best option. Take the time to do the research and talk to your bank – if it’ll save you money, it’s worth it.

Reviewing your home loan is just one of the things that could save you money, we've put together an initial list of financial and service products you may like to consider as part of an overall financial health check

Tip #34

It’s important to know what you want when purchasing a home. Understand and continue to remind yourself of what you are actually looking for. What can you afford? Are there things you can compromise on and things you absolutely need? Keeping a list will be a good reference point for you to look back at as you start to seriously consider houses for sale.

Here's 3 must-do steps to prepare yourself for buying a house. 

Tip #35

Save as much as you can for your home deposit. The larger your deposit, the smaller the loan amount will be. This means you’ll have smaller repayments and the interest you pay will be less. Look for ways you can save on everyday expenses – get off the bus a zone earlier, skip a regular movie date for a walk in the park and take your own lunch to work – you might be surprised how much better off your bank account is after just a few months.

Here's 3 must-do steps to prepare yourself for buying a house. 

Tip #36

Don’t waste money paying a fee to use ATMs that don’t belong to your bank. You can normally use your own bank’s ATM without paying a fee, at least for a certain number of transactions. But using a different bank’s ATM could cost you $2 or $3 a time. That’s crazy when you could avoid the fee altogether.

Tip #37

It’s amazing how common it is for people to lose track of a bank account or company shares. To see whether you have money sitting in an account you’ve forgotten about, just go to the ASIC website and do a search for unclaimed monies. You might get a pleasant surprise.

Tip #38

Nobody likes paying fees they could avoid. That’s why it’s really important to understand the fees structure in your bank accounts. For instance, you might only get a certain number of free transactions a month, and cop a fee for any extras. Save money by knowing when you incur a fee.

Tip #39

A bit of organisation can mean a big saving in the kitchen. Set some time aside each week to decide on your meals and make a list of exactly what you need.  This will also help reduce the amount of food that gets wasted. It may also avoid the need for costly takeaway dinners.

Tip #40

Buying a property ‘off the plan’ can come with some great advantages. Aesthetically, you might be able to have a say in finishes such as tiles or colours. Financially, it can give you  more time to save a bigger deposit, which can  impact the amount of interest you’ll pay on your mortgage.

Tip #41

Before you start the negotiation process on buying a property, make sure you know what your limits are financially. By talking to a lender and finding out what repayments will be for different price points, you’ll start to get a feel for what you might be able to  borrow and what you’re comfortable paying off each month.

Tip #42

It’s easy to get caught up with the emotion of purchasing a property – it’s a place to call home for you and your family, plus it’s one of this biggest purchases you will ever make. This aside, buying and selling property is a business – be prepared to walk away from a property if the price isn’t right. There will always be another.

Tip #43

A standard contract for buying a home in Queensland comes with a  cooling-off period of 5 business days the  buyer can cancel the contract during this time if they don’t want to go ahead with the purchase. The buyer could be charged a percentage of the total purchase price for cancelling during this period – talk to your solicitor about your current situation before signing a contract.

Tip #44

Buying property at auction in Queensland differs from other countries and even other States. Did you know, in Queensland, there is no cooling off period in which to change your mind when you  buy property at auction. This means it’s important to consider everything from finance to building and pest inspections, before you bid on a property at auction.

Tip #45

When buying a house you need to consider a number of things when it comes to finance. The three main considerations will be – how much you will need for a deposit, how much your repayments will be (and how much does this change depending on your deposit), and that  you will be able to  afford to make the repayments – taking into account your current financial situation and responsibilities.

Tip #46

When it comes to purchasing property research is key! What’s happening in the area you’re looking at buying in – what’s sold recently, for what price and how long did it take to sell. This will help you know if you’re walking into a bargain or if there’s potential for you to negotiate a better price, based on market trends.

Tip #47

What does your credit file say about you? Most lenders will check your current and past credit activity by contacting a credit ratings agency. You can check your file yourself via credit bureaus such as Veda.

Tip #48

A solid track record of employment and a history of regular savings in your bank account will make it easier for you to get a home loan. Lenders want to see evidence of good financial management to ensure they aren’t taking unnecessary risks. You could do this by using a separate savings account with a higher interest rate to make regular deposits and few withdrawals.

Tip #49

Preparation is key before applying for a home loan. Lenders will check account statements for the last three to six months when assessing a loan application. This means it’s important to keep your bank account in order – ensure there are no late payments, And your account operates within its limits.

Tip #50

Lenders need to protect themselves in the unfortunate event that you might not be able to repay your loan – and that’s where lenders mortgage insurance , or LMI, comes in. In the same way you insure your house against loss via theft or damage, banks also insure their mortgages against people defaulting on repayments. How much LMI you pay will depend on your Loan to Value Ratio, or LVR. I’ll explain this tomorrow.

Tip #51

Paying off more than the minimum repayments required on a home loan is a great way to save money and pay off your loan sooner. When interest rates go down, minimum payments can also reduce, but by maintaining your repayments at the same level at such times, borrowers will be paying more off their loan in a shorter amount of time, in turn saving money.

Tip #52

Tax time can be an exciting time if you’re expecting a tax return. Rather than splash the money about on things you don’t really need, consider using the money to help reduce your debt. By putting the money into a mortgage offset account, or by paying off some of your home loan, you’ll be paying less interest, paying off your loan sooner, and saving money.

Tip #53

It’s important to take the time to review your home loan to make sure you are getting the best deal possible. You might be able to negotiate a deal with your bank, or you may find that switching banks is your best option. Take the time to do the research and talk to your bank – if it’ll save you money, it’s worth it.

Tip #54

It’s important to know what you want when purchasing a home. Understand and continue to remind yourself of what you are actually looking for. What can you afford? Are there things you can compromise on and things you absolutely need? Keeping a list will be a good reference point for you to look back at as you start to seriously consider houses for sale.

Tip #55

Save as much as you can for your home deposit. The larger your deposit, the smaller the loan amount will be. This means you’ll have smaller repayments and the interest you pay will be less. Look for ways you can save on everyday expenses – get off the bus a zone earlier, skip a regular movie date for a walk in the park and take your own lunch to work – you might be surprised how much better off your bank account is after just a few months.

Tip #56

Don’t waste money paying a fee to use ATMs that don’t belong to your bank. You can normally use your own bank’s ATM without paying a fee, at least for a certain number of transactions. But using a different bank’s ATM could cost you $2 or $3 a time. That’s crazy when you could avoid the fee altogether.

Tip #57

It’s amazing how common it is for people to lose track of a bank account or company shares. To see whether you have money sitting in an account you’ve forgotten about, just go to the ASIC website and do a search for unclaimed monies. You might get a pleasant surprise.

Tip #58

Nobody likes paying fees they could avoid. That’s why it’s really important to understand the fees structure in your bank accounts. For instance, you might only get a certain number of free transactions a month, and cop a fee for any extras. Save money by knowing when you incur a fee.

Tip #59

A bit of organisation can mean a big saving in the kitchen. Set some time aside each week to decide on your meals and make a list of exactly what you need.  This will also help reduce the amount of food that gets wasted. It may also avoid the need for costly takeaway dinners.

Tip #59

A bit of organisation can mean a big saving in the kitchen. Set some time aside each week to decide on your meals and make a list of exactly what you need.  This will also help reduce the amount of food that gets wasted. It may also avoid the need for costly takeaway dinners.

Tip #60

Investing your money can be a successful way to make a profit over time. There are many ways people can invest their money – some short term and some long. A  key to successful investing is building a strong, diverse portfolio suitable for your personal and financial situation.

Tip #61

When considering property as an investment many people get confused with capital growth vs. ongoing rental return. Capital growth is the profit earned when a property is sold for more than it was purchased for, while ongoing rental return is the regular income received from tenants who pay to rent the property over a leasing period.

Tip #62

When considering property as an investment many people get confused with capital growth vs. ongoing rental return. Capital growth is the profit earned when a property is sold for more than it was purchased for, while ongoing rental return is the regular income received from tenants who pay to rent the property over a leasing period.

Tip #63

Take the time to shop around to see if you can get a better deal on your home loan. Even a small weekly saving on your repayments will add up over the term of the loan, so it’s worth putting in the effort. Talk to lenders and find out what they can offer you for your situation – it might pay off in the long run to start up a conversation.

* Based on a $150,000 loan over 25 years. WARNING: This comparison rate is true only for the examples given and may not include all fees and charges. Different terms, fees or other loan amounts might result in a different comparison rate.

  The information provided to you is general and may not be appropriate for you. Conditions, criteria and fees apply to products. Please consider the Guide to Heritage Deposit Products or the Guide to Heritage Credit Card Products (available in-branch, by phoning 13 14 22 or at www.heritage.com.au) before you decide whether a product is right for you.

The information provided is intended as general information only. Blogs have been prepared without taking into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. Because of this you should, before acting on this information, consider its appropriateness having regard to your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider obtaining personal investment, taxation and/or legal advice before making any decision.  Please consider the Guide to Heritage Deposit Products (available in-branch, or at www.heritage.com.au) before you decide whether a product is right for you. Conditions, Criteria and Fees apply.