Mortgage Choice spokesperson Jessica Darnbrough offers a few pointers to help Australians stick to their financial resolutions in 2014.
A New Year is here, and with it comes the opportunity to get your finances in order.
If you are anything like me, you may have already made a New Year's resolution to eat healthier and exercise more, so why not resolve to whip your finances into shape as well.
While we understand that growing your savings is no easy feat, a little bit of careful planning teamed with a strategic budget can go a long way towards helping you reach your financial goals in 2014 and beyond.
Here are five tips to help get your finances in order this year:
Avoid unnecessary extras and costs: Evaluate your regular outgoings and identify any unnecessary costs which you can cut down or cut out. Cutting back on guilty pleasures like takeaway coffees, Friday night takeaway or premium television packages can lead to significant savings in the long term.
Think small when budgeting: Planning ahead with your finances for a full year can be daunting, and ultimately, ineffective. Instead, budget monthly or in accordance with the length of your pay period. This will allow you to amend your budget fairly quickly if you over overestimate or underestimate certain expenses.
Update your savings account: Research the benefits offered by savings accounts across various financial institutions. Switching banks and opening a new account with a lending institution that offers lower fees and higher interest rates will allow you to save more in less time.
Pay off and cancel your credit card: Credit card interest rates are notoriously high. Constant use without complete payment at the end of the month can lead to significant debt. Many people get stuck using a credit card and struggle to break the cycle as interest continues to accrue. Make paying off your credit card a priority early in the year, and cancel it as soon as possible. Debit cards are an ideal alternative, providing a similar level of protection for online and over the phone purchases, without the significant interest rates.
Compare to find a better deal: You may be paying more than is necessary on your home loan, insurances, utility bills, etc. Comparing your options via your mortgage broker or websites such as HelpMeChoose.com.au can help you find the best deal suited to your needs and save you money in the process.
For more budgeting tips and home loan options visit Mortgagechoice.com.au, Facebook.com/MortgageChoice or Twitter.com/MortgageChoice. Or, call 13 6678
This article is for general information purposes only. It has been prepared without considering your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should, before acting on the information, consider its appropriateness to your circumstances.
Mortgage Choice has sourced a home loan for well over 350,000 people since 1992. It works with all manner of property finance borrowers via hundreds of franchises. The company writes one home loan every 15 minutes in Australia by providing professional guidance on, and choice of, products offered by an extensive panel of leading lenders. Many of its brokers provide a broader service, helping customers source commercial and personal loans, asset finance, deposit bonds and providing referrals for risk and general insurances.
Uniquely, Mortgage Choice pays its franchisees the same commission rate for home loans they write, regardless of rate paid by the lender a new customer selects, working in the customer’s best interests to tailor a solution to them.
To cater to the growing needs of its customers, Mortgage Choice soft-launched in October 2012 its new financial planning business. Mortgage Choice Financial Planning will officially launch in FY14.
The company has no balance sheet or funding risk, and consistently delivers strong profits and attractive yields. It listed on the ASX in 2004 (MOC) and is a member of the Mortgage & Finance Association of Australia (MFAA).
Recent recognition: 2013, 2012, 2011 Australian Broking Awards Major Brokerage of the Year – Franchise; 2013, 2012 Australian Broking Awards Best Ethical/Social Responsibility Program; 2012 Australian Broking Awards Best Training and Education; No.1 on The Adviser magazine’s 2012, 2011, 2010 and 2009 Top 25 Brokerages list; 2012, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2006 and 2005 MFAA Awards Retail Aggregator/Originator of the Year; 2011, 2010, 2009 and 2008 10 Thousand FEET Top 10 Franchise list; 2010 Forbes Asia-Pacific Best Under A Billion list.
Mortgage Choice holds an Australian Credit Licence: no. 382869 and Mortgage Choice Financial Planning Pty Limited, a fully owned subsidiary of Mortgage Choice, holds an Australian Financial Services Licence: no. 422854. Both licences are issued by ASIC.
Visit www.mortgagechoice.com.au or call customer service on 13 6678.
Lauren Booke, Mortgage Choice Corporate Affairs
P: (02) 8907 0502
M: 0448 240 047
Amity HarroldP: (02) 9818 9334
M: 0434 975 868