SPONSORED ARTICLE: Five big ways seniors can save money
Tuesday, 1st August, 2017
Founder and managing director at Savvy Bill Tsouvalas shares his top five tips for seniors to save money.
When we get to our golden years, we’ve done our fair share. We’ve paid more tax than everyone else pays, and spent more money than our children – and their children! So it’s time to get a bit back. We seniors – all 3.5 million of us according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics - can save money in big ways, even if we’re not eligible for a Seniors Card.
Save on energy
In almost all states of Australia, seniors are eligible for special discounts on gas and electricity. In NSW, AGL gives over 60s one month free electricity and special discounted rates for every other month. This also applies in Victoria to Seniors Card holders. Seniors can also apply for further seniors related concessions and discounts on top of these discounted plans. In some states, seniors can apply for a rebate on water bills.
Pay less for insurance
Seniors have many options when it comes to insuring their car, home, and investments. Many insurance companies pool together over 50s and over 60s, as they are less of a risk due to driving less regularly. Some insurers offer “pay as you drive” policies, which can save you even more money if you only use your car once in a blue moon. Most of these insurance agencies are underwritten by major companies like Allianz or are run as not-for profits like National Seniors Insurance.
Get free or concession transport
In most states of Australia, a Seniors Card entitles you to concession rate travel, or in some cases, free travel. The National Seniors Transport scheme gives seniors access to cheaper travel on public rail and bus services. Seniors can apply for free off-peak travel vouchers through their states’ public transport authority. Seniors that still drive can also apply for a concessional Compulsory Third Party and car registration.
Get more out of your mortgage
Though it can be tougher for senior citizens to refinance their homes due to tougher restrictions in the National Consumer Credit Protection Act (2010), senior citizens can be eligible to refinance their home loan if they have high equity in their home. Some seniors can use the equity to supplement their income by using their home equity as a line of credit. In some cases, senior citizens can use a refinancing option to purchase an investment property to bolster their income. Pensioners can also access the government’s special Pension Loans Scheme.
You should do as much research as possible; the best way to get many options in one place is to contact a broker to help you through the process. They have connections to major lenders and can find you a product that best suits your needs.
Still working full-time? You can save on business
In Victoria, Queensland, NSW and most other states, seniors that work full-time are not eligible for many of the concessions and discounts offered by the Seniors Card. However, if you do work full time and are over 60, you can apply for a senior’s business card. Seniors business card gives you better deals and rates from thousands of businesses, all of which offer at least a 10% discount.
The best money saving tips
If you’re a senior citizen, it’s best to apply for a Seniors Card first and apply for as many concessions as possible. You can save thousands per year on energy, transportation, insurance, and more. To save even more money, consider:
- Downsizing or decluttering and selling what you don’t need
- Switching incandescent bulbs for LEDs in your home
- Set a budget each month and stick to it
This way you can save even more money!
* Author bio: Bill Tsouvalas is founder and managing director at Savvy. He has a been working in the mortgage and vehicle finance business for over 10 years. He also writes articles & guides on mortgage, vehicle finance, consumer protection and insurance related topics.