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Cars are wonderful machines in terms of their ability to put up with screaming kids, those messy chip packets and travel mugs, and us stressed-out mums singing the wrong words to great songs day-in day-out. My car is amazing at coping with what I throw at it daily and, like many other mums’ cars, my car, is a little trooper.
But my car won’t give out those luxuries cheaply and here’s why:
Anything as wonderful as a machine that can get me, (the mum) and her children from A to B every day, 365 days a year, for many years – costs money and bags of that happy green stuff. But even though cars cost a lot of money, there are many ways mums like me can get super sneaky. We can make small changes to make massive savings on running our cars, so it costs less for the luxury these little troopers afford us daily.
Here are 8 ways you can make this happen a.s.a.p!

Hot tips for saving big on car insurance this year

1. Become a better driver

Keep the cops off your tail and reap the benefits of cheaper premiums. If you think you are pretty good behind the wheel and you have an excellent incident-free driving record increasing your excess will reduce your premium.

2. Pay your insurance annually

Monthly insurance payments are often more.

3. Pick the right make and model

Yeah – driving an extra rare super fast sports car will cost you more than a Ford with a nifty bunch of safety features.

4. Don’t let your kids drive your car

Drivers under 25 will up your premium. Get them to catch the bus until their 25th birthday or save for their own car and the associated costs of having one.

5. Think about where you are living

If you live near a high accident zone (a highway prone to cars coming off it) or thieves and vandals you will pay more. If you do secure your alarmed car in a garage that has an alarm and you’ll pay less.

6. Get good at maintenance

Maintain and service your car regularly as your policy is unlikely to cover you for mechanical faults or tyre damage due to neglect. Yeah – you know that tyre? The one you keep pumping up that always seems to be a lower gauge than the rest? Drive down to the tyre shop and get it fixed. Do it today.

7. Make your car as safe as possible

Install an alarm and immobiliser. Anything you add like this will reduce your premium. Just calling around insurance agencies and answering their questions will give you a good idea of what you need to do to get your premiums down.

8. Become a bundle-it-up freak

It’s always cheaper to bundle. But make sure you shop around for those bundles too. Shop around and compare policies using online comparison sites.
Got some great tips on how to save on car insurance? Please leave them in the comments below.

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I’ve had my share of rental car remorse. There was the time hubby and I were leaving town for good and hired a car for the last few days to get us through. We were just metres from the hire car company, parked at the lights, when BANG – a tradie in a ute slammed right up the back of us. It took us an entire six months to recover the excess money from the tradie (he was a good guy – but struggling for the cash) since we weren’t in town and he knew we couldn’t come knocking! And no. He wasn’t insured – so it hurt him too.
Believe me. There are plenty of hidden costs when hiring a car and I’m here to save you the heartache of going through an experience from hell like I did.

Here are three of the biggest ways a rental can exceed your expenses:

1. Insurance

Rental car insurance can be expensive. Insurance can range from $10-20 a day, which can add up if you are using the car for an extended period of time. Luckily, many credit card companies can act as insurance for your car at no extra cost. Just be aware that some credit cards have limited or non-existent coverage, so call and check first whether yours does. Many credit card companies do not cover the cost of damage to the car, and even if they do, some do not cover the fees incurred by the rental company. If you need legal advice, go to professionals like the Motor Accident Legal Service who can provide legal assistance if you get yourself in a bind like I did!

2. Drivers

If you happen to have a partner or a younger person driving your rental car, this can cost more. If you or the person driving the car is under 25 years old prices go up considerably. A few years ago, most companies didn’t allow people under 21 to drive rental cars, and while most do now, these age groups face higher fees and they are assessed daily. Each additional driver adds to the price, even if they are over 25. Be conservative when deciding who will drive the car. The less drivers the better.

3. Extra fees

There are a host of extra fees incurred too. Read the fine print!
Some of these include:

  • Prohibiting the use on unpaved roads. Stick to bitumen!
  • Collision damage waivers
  • Filling up the fuel tank upon return. If you don’t they’ll charge you their petrol fees, which will be higher!
  • Extras like navigation equipment and car seats. Bring your own!

Above all, know what you’re getting into and know exactly what you’re paying for. Research well and prepare ahead of time for your trip. With this in mind, you can drive your rental car knowing that if someone slams into your rear, like what happened to me, you are covered!

Bonus Tip

Always spend more to reduce the excess you would need to pay should you have an accident.

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If you plan on driving around Australia, you might be familiar with terms like CTP Green Slips or Third Party Insurance. If you aren’t familiar with the term, here’s a crash course on Third Party Insurance, which will save you big dollars over time and give you more piece of mind while on the road.

What a CTP Green Slip covers

“CTP” stands for “Compulsory Third Party” and is a type of insurance policy. A Green Slip provides compensation to people who are injured or killed in an accident — including passengers, pedestrians, and drivers of other vehicles.

What a CTP Green Slip won’t cover

A CTP green slip will NOT cover damage done to your car or anyone else’s.  It also won’t cover you if your car is ever stolen.  This insurance is designed to simply cover personal injuries, rather than property damage.

What Green Slips are called in different States

  • NSW – CTP Green Slip – (RMS – State Government’s Roads & Maritime Services)
  • Queensland CTP Green Slip – Compulsory Third Party (Via  Insurance Companies – Various)
  • Victoria: TAC – Transport Accident Charge (TAC – Transport Accident Commission)
  • South Australia: MII – Motor Injury Insurance (MAC – Motor Accident Commission)
  • Australian Capital Territory: Compulsory Third Party Insurance (NRMA)
  • Western Australia: Compulsory Third Party Insurance (Insurance Commission WA)
  • Tasmania: CTP governed by Motor Accidents Insurance Board (NRMA)
  • Northern Territory: CTP via TIO (Territory Insurance Office)

Case Study: NSW – Cost of a Green Slip

The type of vehicle will determine how much you pay, and each insurance company sets its own rates.  However, insurers are required to get all of their green slip rates approved by the Motor Accidents Authority if NSW (MAA).  Because premiums can differ from company to company, it’s smart to do a green slip comparison before you sign up.  Car insurance is a competitive industry in Australia so it is well worth shopping around.  Also when it comes time to renew, compare the rates again.  Insurance companies have a nice habit of creeping prices up while you are busy focusing on other life events.


Discounts and Green Slips

Look into bundling up all insurances with the one insurance company. Bundle your green slip up with your comprehensive vehicle, home, contents and health insurance to save big! Also learn how to improve your driving habits.  If you’ve racked up a bunch of tickets or caused accidents, you’re going to pay a premium over a driver with a perfect record.  Drive smart and your new habits will pay off in CASH over time!
Happy driving!

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If you plan on driving around Australia, you might be familiar with terms like CTP Green Slips or Third Party Insurance. If you aren’t familiar with the term, here’s a crash course on Third Party Insurance, which will save you big dollars over time and give you more piece of mind while on the road.

What a CTP Green Slip covers

“CTP” stands for “Compulsory Third Party” and is a type of insurance policy. A Green Slip provides compensation to people who are injured or killed in an accident — including passengers, pedestrians, and drivers of other vehicles.

What a CTP Green Slip won’t cover

A CTP green slip will NOT cover damage done to your car or anyone else’s.  It also won’t cover you if your car is ever stolen.  This insurance is designed to simply cover personal injuries, rather than property damage.

What Green Slips are called in different States

  • NSW – CTP Green Slip – (RMS – State Government’s Roads & Maritime Services)
  • Queensland CTP Green Slip – Compulsory Third Party (Via  Insurance Companies – Various)
  • Victoria: TAC – Transport Accident Charge (TAC – Transport Accident Commission)
  • South Australia: MII – Motor Injury Insurance (MAC – Motor Accident Commission)
  • Australian Capital Territory: Compulsory Third Party Insurance (NRMA)
  • Western Australia: Compulsory Third Party Insurance (Insurance Commission WA)
  • Tasmania: CTP governed by Motor Accidents Insurance Board (NRMA)
  • Northern Territory: CTP via TIO (Territory Insurance Office)

Case Study: NSW – Cost of a Green Slip

The type of vehicle will determine how much you pay, and each insurance company sets its own rates.  However, insurers are required to get all of their green slip rates approved by the Motor Accidents Authority if NSW (MAA).  Because premiums can differ from company to company, it’s smart to do a green slip comparison before you sign up.  Car insurance is a competitive industry in Australia so it is well worth shopping around.  Also when it comes time to renew, compare the rates again.  Insurance companies have a nice habit of creeping prices up while you are busy focusing on other life events.


Discounts and Green Slips

Look into bundling up all insurances with the one insurance company. Bundle your green slip up with your comprehensive vehicle, home, contents and health insurance to save big! Also learn how to improve your driving habits.  If you’ve racked up a bunch of tickets or caused accidents, you’re going to pay a premium over a driver with a perfect record.  Drive smart and your new habits will pay off in CASH over time!
Happy driving!

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As a busy mother of two, I have a range of hats including taxi driver, cook, psychologist, housekeeper, teacher, cleaner, facilities and renovations manager, home CEO, sleep coach and receptionist! And those jobs don’t include my day job and life as a blogger! It was only recently when I flew into Wellington with my hubby while on holiday and the pilot aborted our landing that I got thinking about life insurance. Sure, it would have been too late in the case of my plane above, but other priorities and just being plain busy – seem to take precedence.
Similarly, if you are between the age of 17 and 59 you might also have priorities on your list aside from life insurance.

Here are a few scenarios for a typical life plan

In your 20s

In your early twenties you might be thinking about how to pay for university. In your late 20s you might be returning from world travel and trying to get back on your feet after all the fun you’ve just had in Thailand, the Mediterranean and Vegas!

In your 30s

In your 30’s you might be trying to cover the cost of your first baby including those over-priced nappies, baby clothes and those exorbitant childcare fees if you have to return to work.

In your 40s

In your 40s you might be working hard to pay off a mortgage and you might start putting money away for retirement.

In your 50s

In your late 50s you might be making plans for escape as a Grey Nomad. You might be thinking about how you will live for a year while travelling around Australia in a campervan! At the same time, you will still want to have money leftover for life when you return home, helping the kids out financially and buying presents for your grandchildren.

But what if life didn’t turn out exactly how you planned it?

No matter what life plan you are following you have probably never thought of Trauma Cover Insurance.
Most of us don’t want to think about bad things happening. But sadly, for many good people in the world, bad things happen. Most people think ‘it’ll never happen to me’ but sadly – it does.
That’s why it is a good idea to think about how you might pay for the complexities of your current lifestyle and plan, should an unfortunate life event occur.

We don’t like to ask ourselves hard questions like these

What if you:

  • Had a car accident and ended up in a coma
  • Inherited a rare heart condition and needed bypass surgery
  • Found out you had cancer
  • Suffered a heart attack one day while out for a jog

The thought of such tragedy happening if often too much to think about and most of us just put ideas like this out of our because we might be ‘tempting fate.’
But if you look at this list – wouldn’t it put your mind at ease if you knew there was a way to cover life’s expenses should something happen?

Consider these scenarios

If you couldn’t work you wouldn’t be able to pay for:

  • The mortgage, grocery bills, utilities, credit card payments etc.
  • Big business expenses should you work for yourself
  • Replacing your salary if you are in paid work
  • The high medical bills associated with an accident or health trauma
  • Costs associated with paying for children and their education

Put yourself first

When people think about insurance they often only think about insuring their materials possessions in their lives like their home, car and contents insurance. What most forget is that these material possessions wouldn’t even exist if we weren’t able to work to pay for them!
If you are considering insurance be sure to place value on your own life and well-being before any other type of insurance. Click here to find out more about trauma cover insurance and how you can protect yourself and loved ones in the event of a life trauma.
 
 
 

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As a busy mother of two, I have a range of hats including taxi driver, cook, psychologist, housekeeper, teacher, cleaner, facilities and renovations manager, home CEO, sleep coach and receptionist! And those jobs don’t include my day job and life as a blogger! It was only recently when I flew into Wellington with my hubby while on holiday and the pilot aborted our landing that I got thinking about life insurance. Sure, it would have been too late in the case of my plane above, but other priorities and just being plain busy – seem to take precedence.
Similarly, if you are between the age of 17 and 59 you might also have priorities on your list aside from life insurance.

Here are a few scenarios for a typical life plan

In your 20s

In your early twenties you might be thinking about how to pay for university. In your late 20s you might be returning from world travel and trying to get back on your feet after all the fun you’ve just had in Thailand, the Mediterranean and Vegas!

In your 30s

In your 30’s you might be trying to cover the cost of your first baby including those over-priced nappies, baby clothes and those exorbitant childcare fees if you have to return to work.

In your 40s

In your 40s you might be working hard to pay off a mortgage and you might start putting money away for retirement.

In your 50s

In your late 50s you might be making plans for escape as a Grey Nomad. You might be thinking about how you will live for a year while travelling around Australia in a campervan! At the same time, you will still want to have money leftover for life when you return home, helping the kids out financially and buying presents for your grandchildren.

But what if life didn’t turn out exactly how you planned it?

No matter what life plan you are following you have probably never thought of Trauma Cover Insurance.
Most of us don’t want to think about bad things happening. But sadly, for many good people in the world, bad things happen. Most people think ‘it’ll never happen to me’ but sadly – it does.
That’s why it is a good idea to think about how you might pay for the complexities of your current lifestyle and plan, should an unfortunate life event occur.

We don’t like to ask ourselves hard questions like these

What if you:

  • Had a car accident and ended up in a coma
  • Inherited a rare heart condition and needed bypass surgery
  • Found out you had cancer
  • Suffered a heart attack one day while out for a jog

The thought of such tragedy happening if often too much to think about and most of us just put ideas like this out of our because we might be ‘tempting fate.’
But if you look at this list – wouldn’t it put your mind at ease if you knew there was a way to cover life’s expenses should something happen?

Consider these scenarios

If you couldn’t work you wouldn’t be able to pay for:

  • The mortgage, grocery bills, utilities, credit card payments etc.
  • Big business expenses should you work for yourself
  • Replacing your salary if you are in paid work
  • The high medical bills associated with an accident or health trauma
  • Costs associated with paying for children and their education

Put yourself first

When people think about insurance they often only think about insuring their materials possessions in their lives like their home, car and contents insurance. What most forget is that these material possessions wouldn’t even exist if we weren’t able to work to pay for them!
If you are considering insurance be sure to place value on your own life and well-being before any other type of insurance. Click here to find out more about trauma cover insurance and how you can protect yourself and loved ones in the event of a life trauma.
 
 
 

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Petrol prices are on the rise. It usually costs around $70 to fill up my humble Ford Focus at the bowser, but yesterday it cost me $80! That’s a pretty significant jump in a few weeks. According to ABC News’ latest report they are set to soar this year and we’ll be getting more pain at the pump!
It’s a good thing that each year’s crop of new cars are getting more efficient to help ease the discomfort we are all feeling from these money-sucking bowsers. But then there’s the whole issue of how you drive your car. The proposed mileage your car salesperson may have sold you, will not hold nearly as much weight if you are burning people off at the lights and driving at full speed down a highway when you could ease off a little and jump into the slow lane.
Here are five simple tips you for slashing your gas bill and getting more bang for your buck!

1. Lighten the load!

If you are a mum like me you may be guilty of this one. I often use my car as a spare room. In fact, I practically live in my car as my life as mum and taxi driver. Then there’s my weekend clean outs – so I’ll often have bags of stuff in the back of my car designated for the op shops. Then there’s the pram and gear for the beach during summer.
Yes. It is convenient to keep stuff in my car – but lugging all that stuff around can get heavy so I’ve become more conscious of taking the really heavy stuff out. So the pram is now out and the stuff for the op-shops gets dropped off that day!
Options include taking all that stuff out or buying a car that actually weighs less than my Ford Focus, as opposed to say – a Land Rover.
Bonus tip: Also avoid putting cargo on your roof to avoid aerodynamic drag and boost efficiency!

2. Lose your idle habits

Leaving your car running when it’s parked is a great way to burn unnecessary fuel. Check out my article on 10 ways to burn cash with your car and you’ll get the picture! Idling can use up to almost two litres of fuel per hour, depending on the size of your car’s engine and whether or not you leave the air-conditioner blasting. Make a habit of turning your car off when it’s parked. That’s the whole point of parking it!

3. Go easy on the pedals

Let’s compare the difference between cost-effective driving and hammering like a crazy heavy-footed gas-guzzling maniac! Sure. You can be assertive on the road. You can do it with stickers, signage and hand signals if you like. But slamming on the brakes and overtaking vehicles just for the fun or in a pent-up road-rage fury is not only silly – but it is expensive! So easy off the accelerator, gear-down instead of brake and take it a bit slower and you’ll find your car will feel the love in terms of less wear and tear and better fuel economy. Be nice to your car and it will repay you in cash!

4. Stick to the speed limit

Try to avoid being a ‘need to speed’ type. I usually catch up with most people who pass me at the next set of lights. Sure – people call me ‘Driving Miss Daisy’ but my car is a place of peace, happiness and relaxation! Those speed-demons really should try it, because driving around like a maniac actually makes a person feel more aggressive. So use cruise control, stick within the speed limit, drive at a consistent speed and enjoy the ride! You’ll probably get to your destination within the same timeframe and you’ll get there with more money in your pocket and that’s a great reason to slow down!

5. Consolidate your trips

At the end of a long day at work most people just want to get home and relax. In the evening they might head out again and run errands like doing a grocery shop or checking a post box. But stop! Try to consolidate your trips and run those errands on the way home. Remember – every time you get in that