“Borrowers can achieve considerable savings by doing a balance transfer,” says Vishal Dhawan, chief financial planner, PlanAhead Wealth Advisors.
Those with high-cost debt, like credit card or personal loans, should refinance them at a lower rate. “Many public-sector banks are offering Covid-19 personal loan at 7-7.5 per cent. Use this money to pay off your higher-cost loans,” says Deepesh Raghaw, founder, PersonalFinancePlan. You may also use top-up home loans, which are available for 7.75-9.9 per cent, for this purpose.
Negotiate with landlord
If you have suffered a job loss or a salary cut, speak to your landlord to see if he will reduce your rent. If he does not agree, see if he will lower the rent for the next six months. Moving to a smaller apartment is another option you may consider.
If your office allows work-from-home for a prolonged period, shift towards the periphery where the rent is lower.
If your rent is up for revision, negotiate for a smaller hike — not the customary 10 per cent.
Reduce internet bill
With home internet usage surging, you should make an effort to rein in this cost.
First, choose the right data plan based on the amount of usage. Most providers have a fair usage plan (FUP) limit. Say, if you pay Rs 1,500, your WiFi service provider may give you 200-300 gigabyte of data at 10 megabytes per second (Mbps), after which the speed declines to 2 Mbps. “It is smarter to upgrade to a plan where the FUP limit is higher,” says Udbhav Tiwari, public policy advisor, Mozilla.
Two, don’t view all video-based content at the highest quality. Reduce the quality setting where feasible.
Three, make sure the apps running in the background don’t consume data. Mobile operating systems and Windows 10 offer data-saver WiFi mode.