Life is full of expenses. Whether it’s your home loan, your holiday or necessities like food, it can feel like daily life is one long series of consumer temptations and responsibilities. However, just what we choose to spend our money on collectively as a nation changes every year – as do the prices of what we buy!
So, what are Australians having (and choosing) to spend their money on these days, and how do you stack up?
The bare necessities
It’s no secret that Sydney is one of the most expensive places in Australia to live. In fact, using the consumer price index from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), the capital of New South Wales tops the charts in terms of how expensive common goods and services are. That’s why it’s all the more important to stay on top of your financial planning and keep your budget close to heart.
However, it isn’t the everyday costs that are likely putting a strain on your wallet these days. According to the ABS, the cost of education increased by 3.1 per cent over the March quarter, while health services and products were boosted by 1.9 per cent too. Not everybody will be affected equally by these increases, but anyone with a health condition or secondary-school children are likely to be feeling the pinch over the last few months.
Life’s little luxuries
It isn’t just the bare necessities were are spending on either. Research from Deloitte, for example, shows that expenditure on luxury goods, particularly electronics, has taken off in recent years. The average top-performing global luxury goods company brought in over US$2 billion in 2015, and PEW Research reveals that 77 per cent of Australian adults own a smartphone: one of the highest proportions in the world.
Clearly, we are going crazy for our gadgets, but there are plenty of Australians who are preferring to focus on experiences rather than products too. The 2014 Visa Affluent Study found that Australians with some cash to spare are choosing to spend it on evenings out and family holidays rather than the latest iPhone. It also appears that people are preferring to use their debit and credit cards rather than paper money. Nearly 70 per cent of the expenditure of those Australians with a household income of over $150,000 a year was from plastic, compared to only 18 per cent from cash.
Feel like you need to boost your savings this year? Get in touch with the team at Police Bank to discover a wide range of transaction account options to help you make the most of saving behaviour!