As technology continues to disrupt everything we do and as Austin continues to grow as a city and major technology hub in the U.S., it’s time to think about how we can use the latest innovations at our fingertips and on our doorsteps to make life easier so we can enjoy what matters most to us. From apps to virtual reality and voice assistants to robots, digitizing your life can actually have a bonus effect on your wallet.
Digital Lifestyle Expert Katie Linendoll teamed up with Capital One to share simple tips to help Austinites get more bang for their buck and save even more. “We live in a day and age where new technologies afford us the ability to improve our lives in new, offbeat ways,” said Linendoll. “By applying that same principle to our personal finance routines, we’re better poised to cut unnecessary costs while saving precious time and hard earned money, too.”
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Austinites spend $52,020 a year on average on entertainment, restaurants, housing and more – a hefty sum considering Austinites only earn $200 more than what they spend on average per year. That’s right, Austinites are saving just $200 a year on average! Whether you’re budgeting for the holidays, saving for your next vacation or simply just ‘tech curious,’ Linendoll’s tips offer a great way to employ modern technology to help you cut costs and increase your savings.
- Make your home smarter. Austin Energy recently announced a mandate to install smart thermostats in all new homes to ensure the city is energy efficient. While the upfront cost might be intimidating, Austin Energy is also offering a rebate for the upfront cost. On top of that, by switching to a smart thermostat, which can turn on and off when you need it to, you’ll save up to $145/year.
- Cut the cord. The average cable bill per household is around $99 per month, and most people only watch a handful of those channels. A one-time purchase of a media streaming device costs about the same as a single month of cable. Subscribe to your favorites and you can save around $1,000 a year.
- Leverage cutting-edge technology. Voice-activated technologies hold a lot of promise to make our lives easier. For example, with the Capital One Skill for Amazon Alexa, you can use any Amazon Alexa-enabled device like the Amazon Echo to access your Capital One accounts and check your balance, make a payment and manage your account – all using just your voice.
- Trade in your old tech for cash. Have some old phones and tablets lying around? They could be worth a couple hundred bucks. Many internet trade-in sites and retail stores will offer gift cards and even free shipping for your old tech through something called “recommerce,” aka reverse commerce. If you can make money off old things lying around, do it!
- Take charge of your spending (and saving). Many Americans struggle to come up with emergency expenses, which makes having the flexibility to bank more ways all the more critical. Enroll with a bank like Capital One, which offers great digital tools and services – such as Online BillPay, Enhanced Transactions, Mobile Check Deposit and Personalized Alerts – which ultimately work harder for you and your bottom line.
1. Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics; Average weekly wages for all industries multiplied by 52 weeks.
2. Source: Nest
3. Source: An annual survey by Leichtman Research Group
Capital One sponsored this article.