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Cutting costs

Life is expensive. Find out some tips and tricks to keep more of your income for what you really want.

Mental Health Awareness Week 2023: The impact of money worries
We’re all aware that the cost of living has increased significantly over the last year or so. It’s a hot topic in the election and there’s a mention of something costing more than it used to in almost every news cycle.   With those rising costs can come added stress, especially for [...]
Small steps can lead to financial freedom
August is Te Ara Ahunga Ora Sorted Money Month, the annual campaign designed to help everyday people be better with money. At Avanti, you might say every month is Money Month and we’re always looking for ways to support you to get where you want to be. In the spirit of this year’s [...]
Keeping Your Road Trip Affordable
A road trip is the perfect opportunity to get away from the stress of the city and explore the most beautiful parts of New Zealand. While the costs of a memorable holiday can add up, it doesn’t have to be too much for you. Maybe you’ve got a personal loan to pay off, [...]
Budgeting considerations for new homeowners
Saving for a home and making your offer will likely be the most stressful, yet incredibly exciting, experience of your life. Once you’ve got a place to call home, some financial adjustments often need to be made. With a new home loan, bills, and fees, a re-budget is often the first thing on the [...]
Don’t make this one debt consolidation mistake
Debt reconsolidation is a popular choice for people who have too many debts. Debt consolidation can: Simplify your repayments. Reduce how much interest you pay. Make your repayments more manageable. Restructure your loan with better terms. Sounds great, right? But there’s one common trap that people fall into when they reconsolidate: they don’t [...]
6 key categories missing from your budget
Building a budget is hard and it’s easy to forget a few dollars here and there even if you’ve done it dozens of times before. But there are some categories that seem to pass even the most capable of Kiwis by – and there’s nothing worse than discovering there’s a gap in [...]
Is your budget missing discretionary spending?
Do you ever wish your budget wasn’t so strict? That you had a little bit of cash to go towards whatever strikes your fancy at the time? Good news: discretionary spending is a great way to be more flexible with your money but still avoid busting the budget. WHAT IS DISCRETIONARY SPENDING? ‘Discretionary spending’ [...]
What is debt consolidation?
You’ve heard that debt consolidation could be a solution to your debt problems. But what is it, how does it work, and is it right for you? WHAT IS A DEBT CONSOLIDATION LOAN? A debt consolidation loan is a loan you take out to pay off other loans. This means you only have one [...]
How can I pay less interest?
As a lender, one of the things we get asked a lot is how to reduce the amount of interest someone pays. Here’s your answer! HOW IS MY INTEREST RATE CALCULATED? Your loan provider will always disclose your interest rate and the total amount of interest you are paying as part of your loan [...]
How to avoid debt that doesn’t make sense
Sometimes debt is unavoidable, like when your car breaks down, your washing machine stops working or a dental emergency comes up. But if possible, it’s important to avoid debt that comes from buying things we simply can’t afford. It’s easy to get into debt, but can be so much harder to pay [...]
5 cheap (or free) ways to keep the house warm this winter
Don’t shiver in silence! Use these 5 simple (and cheap) techniques to warm up your home and stay toasty this winter. Quick Summary Make and use draft excluders. DIY guides here and here. Install window insulation films or use bubblewrap. Guides here and here. Open curtains in the day, close them at night. Keep furniture [...]
What is the cheapest way to heat a New Zealand home?
New Zealand homes stay warm in lots of different ways, from open fires to heat pumps. Some are more expensive to run than others, but it isn’t as easy as simply picking “the cheapest” or “the best”. THE CHEAPEST WAYS TO HEAT A HOME IN NEW ZEALAND Source: genless.govt.nz This graph comes [...]
7 fantastic family weekend getaway destinations near Auckland
What’s better than a long weekend? A long weekend away at some of New Zealand’s best staycation hotspots. Brings your friends, bring your whānau – and don’t forget, if you’re an existing Avanti Finance customer, you could fund your long weekend getaway with a top-up on your loan. 1) AUCKLAND Auckland boasts [...]
7 free budgeting tools that work in NZ [2021]
There are plenty of fantastic, free budgeting apps out there – but not many of them work in New Zealand. If you’re sick of seeing “Not Available in your Country”, we’ve put together a list of 7 free budget building and/or tracking tools that we think are perfect for savers in Aotearoa. 1. Your bank 2. [...]
Christmas on a Budget: Gifts (2020)
Christmas on a budget is an opportunity to get back to what really matters this season: friends and whānau. Forget the way everybody else does gifts. Instead, focus on connection, memories and love. Here’s how: FIND A DIFFERENT WAY OF DOING PRESENTS Christmas is about spending time with family, and doing Christmas on [...]
Christmas on a Budget: Decorations (2020)
Do you hear that? That’s the sound of Christmas sleigh bells rapidly approaching – and your tree isn’t even up yet! To help you get into the Christmas spirit without kissing your bank balance goodbye, we’ve put together a few easy ways to transform your home into a real holiday wonderland on a [...]
Christmas on a Budget: Food (2020)
Christmas and good food: name a more iconic duo. But it’s hard to enjoy a delicious meal if you’re anxious about how much it all cost. We’ve put together this guide to cut down your Christmas food bill without compromising on this special time with friends and family. MAKE OR FORAGE BEFORE [...]
Christmas on a Budget: Activities (2020)
Having fun at Christmas doesn’t have to be expensive. Below you’ll find a heap of budget-friendly ideas to entertain friends, family and whanau of all ages. Plus some of these activities will save you money by making your own decorations, food and gifts. Click on the links to find tutorials to guide you [...]
How to reduce your power bill
The cost of power adds up. A heater here, a computer screen there – put them all together and the bill can take a chunk of change out of your budget. But it doesn’t have to. Conquer the costs of these 7 appliances and lower your electricity bill with our saving tips. Running costs were sourced [...]
3 tips to make your budget last until payday
We’ve all been there: payday arrives and you feel rich, but regardless of whether you get paid monthly, fortnightly or weekly, somehow it’s hard to make your money last all the way till your next pay. Here are three tips on how to make your money last till your next payday. 1. WORK OUT [...]
How to deal with COVID-19 money worries
Coronavirus has been a hard time financially for many of us in New Zealand and around the world. Lost jobs, cut hours, extra expenses from staying at home: it all adds up. While the community has rallied together to fight this virus, it can be tough to focus on your health and the health of [...]
13 free tools to help you work from home
Working remotely is great. Every day is casual Friday, the commute is non-existent and don’t get us started on the convenience factor. But if you’re new to the experience, it can be a little difficult adapting. To help you be the best you can be without heading into the office, we’ve put [...]
8 free date night ideas for couples stuck indoors
Stuck indoors for date night? Don’t fret – there are still plenty of fun, free things couples can do together without needing to put even a toe off the property. Here are 8 of our favourite suggestions, along with some ideas to get you started.   Read more: 8 free activities for bored kids stuck indoors   1) [...]
8 free activities for bored kids stuck indoors
“But I’m booored”: the cry that puts the fear into any parent with a child that’s stuck indoors. Keep the tamariki entertained with these 8 free activities available with just a couple of clicks.   1) LISTEN Who says a bedtime story strictly has to be at bedtime? Audible has recently released a huge selection [...]
How families can thrive on a single income budget
There are over 200,000 single-parent families in New Zealand, and many more with a stay-at-home parent – plenty are living on a single income! Whether this is just for now or for the long-term, it can be difficult to manage your finances to help your family thrive. But with careful planning and some sacrifice, it is possible. [...]
8 steps to make a yearly budget
A yearly budget lets you take a long-term view of your finances. It smooths out the hiccups and lets you plan further ahead than a weekly or monthly budget. And if you don’t have one of those yet either? A yearly budget can be broken down into monthly, weekly or even daily budgets too. [...]
The connection between mental health and finances
According to the Canterbury District Health Board, about one in six New Zealand adults had been diagnosed with a common mental disorder at some point in their lives. Mental health issues can be serious and are often tough to deal with. For some people, problems with money can cause them to develop mental health issues. [...]
5 ways to save on NZ school uniforms
One of the most significant costs of sending kids back to school is their uniform – especially at the start of the new year. It’s a double whammy: people are still recovering from Christmas spending and suddenly they need an average of $265 extra dollars to spend just on shorts, shirts and shoes – and that’s [...]


There are free and independent budgeting services that are available to help you assess your finances and help you with your budget.

Sorted – Sorted is a website offering plenty of free and user-friendly online budgeting tools and advice. Visit www.sorted.org.nz

MoneyTalks – MoneyTalks is a free helpline available to provide free budgeting advice to individuals, family and whānau. Call 0800 345 123 or visit www.moneytalks.co.nz

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