Storage Wars

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1 October, 2019

We all have stuff. Possessions that have some personal value and we take from place to place, from rental to rental or house to house and even from relationship to relationship. Quite often our stuff is not as transportable as we think and we put our stuff into paid storage areas whilst we find a new place to live or sort out some facet of our lives.

The costs of such storage can accumulate quickly and if payments become unmanageable the debt can sometimes be many times greater than the actual financial value of the goods. Storage companies rightfully want their money before granting further access to our stuff. Clothes, furniture, toys and memories held to ransom for what seemed an affordable solution in the short term.

We field many calls to the Affordable Helpline 1800 025 539 from people with substantial storage debt as part of their overall financial hardship.

Life’s transitions such as relationship separations, moving interstate, elderly couples downsizing or even a partner's car in storage can quickly become a burden and you can find yourself falling further and further behind. Sometimes the imperative of escaping violence and finding a safe place away from that violence puts many into these financial situations and there are specific groups that can help.

Storage is not cheap and can quickly become large debt. We are quick to justify it as a small monthly sum but perhaps a better way is to consider, what your stuff is really worth and how that stacks up to several months or a yearly payment of storage. The difference may be thousands of dollars. You might need to reconsider how much your stuff really means to you or if Gumtree is a far better option.

By Graeme

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Don’t be tricked this Halloween, apply for your Cost of Living Concession today

The 31st of October is your last day to apply for the Cost of Living Concession. The Cost of Living Concession is an annual payment provided by the Department of Human Services, paid directly to you via electronic funds transfer (EFT) to help with the ever increasing cost of living.

Payments for 2019/2020 Financial Year:

· Eligible tenants will receive $105.40 by the end of March 2020

· Eligible homeowners will receive $210.70 by the end of December 2019

· Eligible homeowners who are self-funded retirees with a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card will receive $105.40 by the end of December 2019

If you previously received a Cost of Living Concession and you are a homeowner (or live in a retirement village or residential park) and your situation had not changed as of the 1st of July 2019, then you may have received your concession payment in August 2019

For more information about the eligibility criteria and how to apply, contact the Concessions SA Hotline on 1800 307 758 (9.00am to 5.00pm, Monday to Friday) or search for Cost of Living Concession on the Affordable SA App or at affordablesa.com.au

As Financial Counsellors we speak to many South Australians who are struggling with the everyday cost of living. If you are falling behind on your everyday living expenses (e.g. water, electricity, council rates, mortgage repayments, rent etc) call the National Debt Helpline on 1800 007 007 to speak to a free Financial Counsellor or search for the National Debt Helpline on the Affordable SA App or at affordablesa.com.au.

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