This guest post will add to the personal finance theme of the previous instalment of our Saving Ninjas series (make sure you go and read it in full if you haven’t yet. The tips there are literally worth their weight in gold!).

It is brought to you by Michelle Hutchison, the money expert of Finder.com.au, one of Australia’s biggest online comparison networks.

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Michelle has been a media commentator on personal finance and Australia’s financial services industry for over 5 years and has had an extensive journalism career in print, radio, television and online publications.

Michelle has worked as a reporter for the radio stations 2GO and Sea FM as well as Channel Nine’s NBN News on the NSW Central Coast.

She has also been the editor of Property Australia magazine, an industry publication for members of the Property Council of Australia, the peak body of Australia’s property industry.

Here is a short video guide from Michelle explaining what credit card balance transfer offers are and how they work.

Here is also a recent report from Channel 10 news in Sydney about the latest credit card balance transfer offers that are currently available (as of January 2015) with commentary by Michelle.

As far as credit card balance transfer offers are concerned, our own independent research suggests that this one is currently the best one out there.

And now over to you Michelle

Here’s a sobering fact: 4.5 million Aussies will fail this year.

At what, exactly? Fail at saving money. Fail at budgeting. Fail at trying not to fail.

This is the reality of a new study about New Years’ Resolutions conducted by us at Finder.

Many of us planned a financial New Years’ Resolution to improve our finances in 2015, but the majority – as many as three in four – are likely to find it difficult to stick to our goals.

Will you be among them?

Or will 2015 be the year you see your financial plans come to fruition?

Here are some tips on how you can stay on track for your New Years’ Resolutions and finally achieve them.

Your resolution: Get in control of your debt and commitments

How you can stick to it?

With the array of options for managing debt and financial commitments, you’ve got no excuse.

Whether it’s looking at comparing balance transfer offers, finding ways to hack your bills or simply trim down the luxuries you fork out for, there are plenty of guides to minimising your expenses and the financial commitments tying you down. Just go ahead and do it!

Your resolution: Save more money

How you can stick to it?

There’s a million and one things you can do to save – but is the old ‘putting your spare change in a jar’ really going to cut it? A great way to save is to look at what you currently spend money on and find ways to spend less.

Spending hacks are a great way to save on things like your daily commute, energy bills and groceries.

For products that aren’t as straightforward, look to negotiate a better deal than your existing arrangement, or pick a new provider.

For example, have a home loan? Consider refinancing.

Lenders have deals to entice you into a new loan, so if you do your research and compare your options your savings could be significant.

And this is just home loans – you can negotiate a better deal on anything, even something like life insurance!

Your resolution: Be healthier and happier – and save more

How you can stick to it?

As mentioned previously, the level of financial literacy amongst Australians has a lot of room for improvement.

Make a conscious decision this year to continually improve your money knowledge – you never know when you might need it!

As a starting point, using guides or calculators – even putting yourself through a money quiz – are easy and fun ways to hone your financial literacy.

 

Whatever your resolution, there are ways to achieve it.

Almost one in seven Australians are planning to change their financial predicament in 2015. Will you be among those who actually succeed?

You’re more likely to reach your goals by sharing them – here’s a tool to do just that.

 

Thank you very much Michelle for your valuable tips. I’m sure our readers will appreciate them.

If you use social media, you can connect with Michelle on Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn.

I trust you found Michelle’s tips useful. If you have any comments or questions, just ‘go crazy’ in the comment box below. We would love to hear your thoughts. Are you committed to keeping your wallet happy in 2015?  🙂

As a quick preview, our next featured Saving Ninja is going to be another household name whose face will be familiar to many of you. Just to give you a little hint, she is commonly known as ‘the guilty mum’. 😉

Keep an eye out for this interview coming to our website (and your inbox if you’re a subscriber) very soon.

 

Before you go:

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  4. Vision Direct – The biggest range of designer eyewear on the planet for the lowest price.

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