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Un-cents-ible: One in three Kiwis don't set a budget

News highlights:
– Just one in two Kiwis have budgeted within the past year
– Millennials are the most likely to budget
– New year savings hacks
28 January 2020, New Zealand – Millions of Kiwis are letting money management fall by the wayside according to global comparison site, Finder, which has recently launched in New Zealand.

A recent Finder survey of 2,225 New Zealanders revealed that only half (52%) of the adult population have prepared a budget in the last 12 months.

The research found that just under 1 in 10 (9%) have set a budget within the past two years, while a further 9% have created a budget within the past three years.

This means that 31% of Kiwis, equivalent to 1.1 million people, have never prepared a personal budget before.

Kevin McHugh, Finder New Zealand's head of publishing, said that creating a workable budget is the first step towards financial success.

“If you don’t budget, you probably know what it’s like to run out of cash before payday, despite having the best of intentions.

"If you have a few big expenses on the horizon, like a summer wedding or holiday, a budget can help you to fast-track your savings goals.

“It can also help you to prepare for big annual bills like your car registration or home insurance policy renewal."

The research also found that saving for a milestone is a key reason why Kiwis have created a financial blueprint (51%).

Of those who budget, one in three (34%) say they’re looking to get more from their money, while 17% were prompted to start after copping a hefty bill.

“Always set some extra cash aside as part of your budget. Consider putting it into a high interest savings account. You never know what life will bring, so it’s important to have rainy day savings,” McHugh said.

Millennials are the most likely to budget: 59% have mapped out a financial plan within the past 12 months, compared to just 44% of baby boomers.

Why did you set a budget?
I was looking for better value 34%
Other 25%
I was saving for a holiday 19%
I experienced bill shock/an excessively high bill 17%
I was buying a house 12%
I was moving house (rental) 11%
I decided to start a family 6%
I was getting married 3%Source: Finder, New Zealand
New year savings hacks

– Savings account hop. Banks tend to offer higher introductory rates for the first three to four months of opening an account. After your honeymoon rate expires, switch to another bank to continue maximising your interest.
– Consider a balance transfer. Struggling to meet your credit card payments? A balance transfer credit card can help you pay off your debt quicker with 0% interest for up to 12 months.

– Avoid the lazy tax. If you’ve been with the same provider for a number of years, jump online and see if there’s a better deal to be had elsewhere. This can apply to your mortgage, energy provider or telco plan.
– Use an app. Budgeting apps like PocketSmith and Wally can help you to track your spending and identify where your cash is going. From here you can work out where to cut back.


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