You have had well over a month to get settled into the new year – but the timing is still ideal to get on top of your budget, if you have not done so already, so you can smash your financial goals.
Did you know that simply by checking in and reviewing your finances, debts and insurances you could put yourself on the path to financial security? If that sounds like too much hard work, don’t fret! With an experienced mortgage broker on your side, you won’t have to chase all of this up by yourself, as they can take care of some of the research and admin for you.
By just spending just a few hours engaging in your own finances, however, you could save thousands, even tens of thousands, each year. Here is how to get on top of your money so you can make it work hard for you:
1. Consolidate your debt
If you have credit cards, personal loans or car finance, you could save a tonne of cash by consolidating this into your mortgage.
Some credit cards and unsecured loan products attract interest rates upwards of 20 per cent. Why pay these exorbitant rates when you could combine it all onto your home loan and pay just 3 per cent or even less?
Don’t forget that by adding this debt to your mortgage, you are extending the time period over which you will be paying it off and dragging this out will see the interest mount up. To really make the most of this strategy, aim to make extra payments wherever you can to get the amount you have consolidated paid down ASAP. Even small contributions, like paying an extra $100 per fortnight, selling some clutter from around the house and putting the proceeds towards your mortgage or saving all your $5 notes and depositing them into your loan each month will make a big difference over the life of the loan.
2. Review home, contents and car insurance
If you have not reviewed your insurances in a while, it is likely you are paying too much. We have a dedicated insurance broker who has a wealth of experience in securing great value policies for our clients, with affordable premiums and excellent inclusions. They will do the hard work and research to make sure you have the coverage you need and present you with quotes that work within your budget.
3. Buy a new car
With access to more than 30 fantastic car finance options, we can get you into a new vehicle with a loan that suits your budget. Whether it is downsizing the 4WD to save on petrol costs, trading up from the old bomb that is costing you more in repairs than it is worth or using your new car purchase as a tax minimisation strategy, we can help.
4. Analyse business accounts and business debt
Running your own business is stressful enough, without the added worry of managing all your financials and shopping around for the right bank. Let us find you the best commercial banker for your business, so you can spend time more productively serving clients, upskilling or training that new staff member.
5. Suss out your superannuation
Australians are absolutely terrible at keeping track of their superannuation – the ATO reports that, as of June 2019, there was more than $20 billion in lost and unclaimed super languishing in forgotten accounts around the country!
Tracking down your lost super and consolidating it into a high-performing fund will help you minimise fees and maximise your retirement savings. While you are at it, be sure to check how much life, Total and Permanent Disability and income protection insurance you have within your super. This way you can be assured to have enough cover if anything unfortunate occurs and that you are not doubling up on premiums or fees across several super accounts.
6. Buy that investment property!
With the current record-low interest rates and strong competition for rental properties in our major cities, it is a great time to think about fulfilling that dream of becoming an investment property owner. It is not just an option for the rich with strong cashflow to bankroll them; the majority of Aussie landlords are everyday income earners who are trying to get ahead. You may even be able to use the equity in your current home or an existing investment property to start building your portfolio today.
7. Make much-needed improvements to your home
If you are sick of staring at those out-of-fashion kitchen tiles or the kids are complaining about sharing a bedroom or bathroom, it could be time to renovate. Even a small extension or minor renovations could completely transform how you function in your home as a family, resulting in fewer arguments, better organisation and that zen-like calm we all crave when we escape back to our sanctuary at the end of a hard day at work or school.
Importantly, it could also add value to your asset and you might not even need to save a cent to fund your project, if we can help you access the equity in your home to cover the costs.
Getting on top of your finances is not that hard after all! After a quick conversation with one of our brokers, you will be on your way to your most prosperous year yet, so contact us today.
Louisa Sanghera is a Finance Broker for Residential Mortgages, Vehicle and Asset Finance, Commercial Lending and Budgeting and Cashflow Coaching with Zippy Financial.
She has gained more than 30 years in the Banking and Finance Industry, and since founding Zippy Financial, has become a multi award nominated expert in the field of finance featuring regularly in industry press and speaking at finance and investment seminars across the country.