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Kick start your financial health in 2013

The most common New Year’s resolutions are of course health related, but let’s not forget our financial health too. To help get you started in 2013 I put into practice the top tips to reduce household spending. I am excited to share my results and I encourage you to give them a try. Below are the tips with my total monthly savings. 1.  Cut cable: I have a few shows that I watch faithfully, so this one was hard for me to consider. But thanks to my tech savvy husband, we cut our cable. Instead we hooked up our computer to our TV and voila instant access to internet TV via Netflix and Hulu. Both programs are inexpensive and provide you with access to your favorite shows. How to hook your TV up to your computer  Total monthly savings: $100 2. Cancel your house landline My husband and I were always on our cell phones at home to the point that we didn’t even notice a phone message on our landline for two weeks. We broke down the cost of our cell phones versus our house phone and discovered we were paying for the same services on both phones. We cut are house phone and saved. Total monthly savings: $30 plus on average long distance charges of $20. 3. The only way to get fit is to have a gym membership…wrong! I have had numerous gym memberships over the years and I always end up opting out of them, because I never go. I can’t seem to make the commitment to go to the gym, especially in the summer. To my surprise there are plenty of free or inexpensive ways to stay fit.  Here are a few suggestions: outdoor jogging and biking (yes even in the winter), most gyms have 30 day free trials, look for coupons for fitness classes and community rec centers offer cheap fitness classes.  Also there are numerous websites that provide great workouts to do at home, Great workout website Total monthly savings: $60 4. Reduce banking fees Have you ever looked at your monthly bank statement, I mean really looked at it. I was surprised at the amount I was paying in fees. I called my bank and requested for them to review my current bank account. My nemesis was email money transfers to pay my portion of the monthly bills to my husband. My bank recommended I set up automatic monthly account transfers to my husband instead.  But remember, this only works if your accounts are at the same bank. Total monthly saving: $20 bank fees. 5. Shop around for cheaper auto and house insurance. Set aside one hour of your day to call and get quotes from insurance companies. There are lots of discounts out there for students, military members and civil servants, so shop around. Also make sure you have the right cover and are not paying for coverage you don’t need. An excellent resource is the Insurance Bureau of Canada they are the trade association for insurance companies in Canada. Check out their website at www.ibc.ca. We have since switched and saved. Total monthly saving: $50 Grand total monthly savings: $280! This tip is extra. It’s from my budget savvy sister who does this every year and never has credit card debt after the holidays-true story.  Tally up what you spent over Christmas and divide it by 24 or 26 (depending on if you get paid bi-monthly or bi-weekly). Take that number and start saving that amount off each pay cheque for next year. My recommendation is to have it automatically withdrawn from your bank account and transferred into a savings account. I’ll be honest it wasn’t hard to try all these tips and it only required a few hours of my time to make some phone calls. Good luck and send me your comments with the results. Happy New Year!   Share & Bookmark This Story! Bookmark on Delicious StumbleUpon Google BookmarksTip’d

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