We’ve learnt some pretty major money trends (such as the new RPGT rates) to more minor – but not totally insignificant – lessons, such as using chat apps instead of SMS can help Malaysians save RM13,499,424 a year!
But the best things we’ve learnt have come from some of the popular stories found on our Learning Centre.
As we move into 2014, it would make sense for us to lay out some of the best money lessons or tips we’ve taken away from these articles.
Lesson 1: Credit cards can you help combat petrol price hike
No, this is not a scheme to get you to sign up for more credit cards. Petrol credit cards, if used correctly, do help you save on petrol money in the form of cashback or reward points.
Jun Han, a employee of iMoney said, “It pays to be loyal as I get rewarded with points that can be used to redeem items from the petrol station or even used it to pump more petrol.”
Read more: 10 easy (and cheap) ways to save petrol
Lesson 2: Understanding your mobile phone usage pays
We shed some light into how much Malaysians spend on telco charges and recommend alternatives to SMS and mobile plans. The saving may not be much, but if you multiply what you save a month by 12, you will end up saving a lot more in a year!
Our colleague, Jacq said, “My job requires me to be constantly in touch with my clients but with more people using chat apps these days, I’ve managed to save about RM15 a month on SMSes.”
Read more: 6 ways to save money on phone bills
Lesson 3: Home loan refinancing is not just for when you are broke
Most people shy away from home loan refinancing but it can be a great option for when you need extra cash for things like your child’s education. Refinancing can help you alter your loan tenure and save you thousands in home repayments.
Our colleague, Adrian said, “I was 26 when I bought my first home in 2008. In hindsight I may have rushed into it but I’m applying for a home loan refinance and will save approximately RM440 on monthly repayments.”
Lesson 4: This is the best time to start planning for your retirement
There is no escaping tax but you can certainly reduce the amount you will have to pay. We tell you among other things, how deferring your income and making larger contributions to a retirement fund can help you save on tax payments.
Benjamin said, “This is the push I need to start my retirement planning. The earlier you start, the better off you are. Plus who will say no to almost immediate return for PRS investment, in the form of tax rebate?”
Lesson 5: The earlier we start on our children’s education fund, the better
When do you start your child’s education fund? Or do you just brush it off, and hope things will be better by the time your child turns 18? You’ll be surprised how easy it is to take the first step to planning your child’s education with this simple infographic by iMoney.
Prema who has a three-year-old daughter, said, “Having an idea of how much we need to save for our daughter’s college education can be intimidating, but it also gives us an idea how and how much we need to save to achieve our goal.”
As always, we hope these lessons we learned will be able to help you navigate through 2014 and make better financial decisions. We look forward to doing it all over again in 2014.
Want to learn more money-saving tips? Here are 10 more simple ways to save money.