According to new figures, Irish households could save €27 a day.

Irish households waste almost €10k every year

New research has highlighted a myriad of expenses Irish households could avoid in order to become more savings savvy this year.

Analysis carried out by Irish savings marketplace Raisin Bank has uncovered that Irish households waste up to €9,873 every year, which works out at just over €27 a day.

Wastage can come in many forms such as guilty pleasures, hidden fees, and forgotten subscriptions, which Raisin Bank says cost Ireland €17 billion every year.

Typical financial advice often advises people to avoid takeaways, coffees, and other ‘unessential’ (but, let’s face it, enjoyable) expenses. And while alcohol and tobacco cost the average person in Ireland €1,739 a year, Raisin Banks said it believes in a mindset of mindfulness rather than misery. Just a few strategic changes can help Irish households hang on to more of their cash.

It starts with finances, of course

Data shows that Irish households could save €481 a year by refinancing their credit card debt with a personal loan. Meanwhile, last year Revenue confirmed that a whopping €313m was owed to around 481,000 taxpayers who paid too much tax, or failed to claim a tax credit they were entitled to, in 2023.

For the households who have savings, keeping your money in a low or zero-paying account is also money down the drain. Households with €10,000 of savings in a low-yield high street saving account could pocket an extra €317 by moving this to a more competitive demand deposit account. Alternatively, if you can afford to lock your money away for a longer period of time, you could earn an extra €368 a year by moving your savings to a higher-yield one year deposit account.

Monthly subscriptions and direct debits

We’re all guilty of spending on items or experiences that don’t feel too expensive on their own, until they all add up together. Unsurprisingly, one of the worst culprits for money down the drain is alcohol – Raisin Bank calculates that every year, the average Irish household spends €3,017 on alcohol.

Not shopping around is also a sure-fire way to spend extra money – the average household could reduce their electricity and gas contracts by €536 by looking around for better deals, while streaming subscriptions add another annual cost of €40 a year, making it worth checking whether you really are getting use out of all of them, and whether you could switch to family plans to save some extra cash. Feeling lucky? Raisin Banks also calculates that every year, Irish people spend €252 on lottery tickets.

General home expenditure

Looking closer to home, creating a food plan for the week ahead in order to reduce waste could also save you a significant chunk – it’s estimated that domestic food waste added up to €1.29bn in Ireland last year, or €700 per household. Data also shows that households spend an average of €233 a year on bottled water, meaning investing in a refillable water bottle could be kinder on both your pocket and the planet. Finally, don’t forget to switch those plug sockets off and avoid standby mode - €50 a year goes down the drain from so-called “vampire devices”.

Commenting on the findings, Monica Pina Alzugaray of Raisin Bank advised people to cut down, rather than cut out, when it comes to spending: “The ongoing high cost of living presents us with a tough balancing act, however, cutting out all of the items and experiences that we enjoy is likely to be unsustainable in the long run.

“Research shows that by taking 30 minutes to review our finances, we can easily identify areas where we could spend a little smarter, look for better deals, or reduce expenditure on things we don’t use or need. Hopefully this means we can still maintain some enjoyment by putting a bit more money back into our pockets.”