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Count on me: 2 in 5 Aussies step up to help others during the cost of living crisis

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Australians are stepping up to help their loved ones and even strangers during the cost of living crisis, according to new research by Finder.

A Finder survey of 1,080 respondents revealed 2 in 5 (39%) have lended a helping hand to a friend, family member, colleague or even a stranger struggling to keep up with rising costs.

That's equivalent to more than 7.9 million generous individuals who have come to the aid of others.

The research found 1 in 4 (27%) bought groceries for someone in need, while 1 in 10 (9%) covered household bills.

A substantial 8% offered up their house or investment property rent-free, while the same proportion (8%) gave them mates rates or performed a service pro-bono.

Sarah Megginson, money expert at Finder, said as the cost of living continues to soar, many are out of their depth.

"In true Aussie style, many are opening up their hearts and homes to others at a time they need it the most.

"It's a heartening act that demonstrates the power of community and the importance of looking out for one another during tough times.

"Young Australians are leading the way as the nation's most altruistic, despite often having lower paying jobs and less cash in the bank."

Despite being the second most financially stressed of all the generations (90%) and feeling the least secure in their current job (12%), gen Z was the most likely to step up and help others around them when they needed it the most (55%).

This is followed by gen Y (44%), gen X (35%), and baby boomers (26%).

Finder's Cost of Living Report 2023 revealed almost 4 in 5 (78%) Aussies have had to reduce their spending to cope with the cost of living crunch.

Megginson said in addition to helping others, it's also important to focus on your own financial well-being.

"If there's anything the last few years have taught us, it's the importance of having a savings buffer to fall back on.

"Setting clear financial goals is key to saving money – whether it be for a down payment on a house, to pay off credit card debt, or for a rainy day.

"Tools like the free Finder app can help categorise your spending and your bills and help you identify areas where you can save money," Megginson said.

Have you done any of the following to help friends, family, strangers or colleagues through the cost of living crisis?
ResponseAverage AustralianGen Z
Bought groceries27%40%
Paid for household bills (rates, water bill, electricity)9%10%
Let them stay in my house / investment property rent-free8%13%
Gave them mates rates / performed a service for free8%12%
Paid medical bills7%10%
Paid for school / university fees4%6%
Let them stay in my investment property at a discount2%3%
I have not done anything61%45%
Source: Finder survey of 1,080 respondents, April 2023

Our guide on budgeting tips includes even more ways to save.

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