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Better Ways

More than one million Australian families used childcare last year. If you were one of them, you know how expensive it has become.

After a six-month investigation, the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission (ACCC) handed down its interim report into the sector earlier this month.

The ACCC found that childcare fees were rising faster than inflation and wage growth, and government subsidies have failed to keep pace.

Are you being hounded by a debt collector? Are the phone calls and texts never ending? Perhaps the debt collector is constantly calling or texting family members or friends to try to get hold of you.

No one wants to be chased for money, especially at a time they are feeling vulnerable and under considerable financial stress. But what exactly is a debt collector? And how are they supposed to behave?

Are you having a tooth pulled? Or lost some teeth in an accident? Or simply don’t like the way your teeth look? Your dentist may suggest dental implants.

While there are good health reasons for replacing a missing or extracted tooth (or teeth) as soon as possible, it’s important to understand what dental implants are and what is involved in the procedure.

Ever wondered why your cup of coffee costs an extra 15 cents at one café and not another? Or why the service station advises that you will have to pay another 1.5 percent to use Visa or Mastercard?

It’s called a card surcharge - the amount a business charges to cover the cost of an electronic transaction, typically between 0.5 and 1.5 percent. While two-thirds of merchants absorbed this fee about five years ago, the use of debit and credit cards increased, and so has the number of businesses passing on the cost.

Struggling to juggle all your bills? Falling behind on your rent or mortgage payments? You may benefit from financial counselling.

We seek advice from the experts for all kinds of things in our lives – from health to education and everything in between, so you shouldn’t be embarrassed about asking for assistance in an area integral to your wellbeing.

Financial counsellors can help you navigate a very stressful time. But who exactly are these professionals? What role do they play in helping you regain control of your financial health? Let's delve deeper into understanding the invaluable support they can provide.