Rising cost of living a worry for West Australians

The Mortgage Choice survey shows utility bills are a big financial concern. 

A majority of West Australians have highlighted rising utility bills as their biggest financial concern for 2014.


According to the inaugural Money Survey by Mortgage Choice, 49.3% of West Australians admitted rising utility bills were their biggest concern, followed by job security (45.3%) and rising interest rates (32.3%).

Mortgage Choice mortgage broker Nathan Bottrell said the results of the survey were largely unsurprising given that almost 90% of respondents indicated that their energy bills had surged over the past 12 months.

 “The survey found 89.1% of West Australians have seen their energy costs rise over the last year,” Mr Bottrell said.

 “In addition, 89.6% of West Australians said they had seen their day-to-day living costs skyrocket over the course of 2013. As such, it is no wonder the majority of the surveyed respondents highlighted rising utility bills as their biggest concern for the year.”

But while it is unsurprising to see so many people concerned about their rising utility bills, Mr Bottrell said there are a few easy tips that West Australians can implement to reduce the cost of their utility bills and ultimately feed some money back into their hip pocket.

Turn it off at the wall – Many West Australians don’t take the time to turn their appliances off at the wall when they are not using them. It may sound like a small thing, but switching your appliances off at the wall can help you cut standby power use and save you a significant amount of money. According to data from the Queensland Government’s Department of Energy and Water Supply, the average household pays around $100 in standby power costs a year.

Environmentally friendly lights – Replacing your old light bulbs and fittings with newer, energy saving options such as light-emitting diodes (LEDs) can help save you money over the long term. Today, LED bulbs are available for standard fittings. They may be slightly more expensive to buy, but they have a life expectancy of 50,000 hours (or 50 years for the average household).

Protect your home from draughts – With the cooler months fast approaching, now is the time to draught-proof your home. Sealing gaps around doors and windows can help you to stop the warm air from escaping in the winter. A ‘door snake’, rolled up towels or newspaper can be used fix the draught problem in your home.

Wash in cold water – Washing your clothes in cold water can save you more than you think. Nearly all of the energy used by the washing machine goes into heating the water. So, if you want to save money and energy, consider washing your clothes in cold water. Your local supermarket will sell laundry powder that is suitable for use in cold water.

Out to dry - Hanging your clothes on a clothesline rather than putting them into a tumble dryer can help you reduce your electricity bills and ultimately feed money back into your pocket. Research conducted by the Australian Government found using a clothesline rather than a dryer once a week can save you $69 a year. 

Mr Bottrell said while these tips may sound simple, when they are put into practice they can help West Australians to save a significant amount of money and markedly reduce their utility bills.


“Anything West Australians can do to reduce their bills and ultimately ease their financial concerns is a positive,” he said.
If you would like help managing your finances, call 9472 0211 or visit https://www.mortgagechoice.com.au/nathan.bottrell

Posted in: Personal loans

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