Building A Solid Financial Foundation

Life style changes can impact on money levels. We never know exactly what the future may bring. In the same way that Federal and State authorities are planning for the next Tsunami to land on our shores, you as an individual and, where relevant, with a family must plan to meet those money storms that can so often come out of the blue. Purposeful planning (and budgeting) sure pays off. Here are some key stages that can help anyone suffering from financial problems.

1. Get your motivation right. Understand why you are doing things (perhaps for once!) in a safe and methodical way. Where relevant bring all the family into the discussions because everyone is going to become involved. Have a target and a reason for that target.

2. Know where you stand. There is no way in the world that you can ensure a firm foundation until you are sure of your current position.  The one thing worse than a vessel on the rocks is one which has been seriously holed in a thick fog!  It may be a pain but you have to itemise every aspect of your expenditure from the biggest to the smallest, from the mortgage to the cost of your daily paper or your sport magazines. Try carrying around a small notepad and jotting down each time you spend money. At the end of a month you should have a pretty accurate figure to put into the budget you are creating.

Financial Foundation

3. Information is power and once you are armed with the complete details of your spending, you can conduct an intensive investigation and see where money could be saved. Sometimes there are obvious things, clear and self-evident steps that can be taken – for example if you are still in hock to nicotine, giving up smoking can do wonders for your finances as well as for your health.  Ordering your weekly shop from the supermarket can bring about big savings because that will cut out invariably expensive impulse buying, save the cost of gas on each journey and avoid those other buys which tend to crop up on a visit to the mall.  Further than that, there may be some tougher decisions to be made but as they say there is no gain without pain!

4. You must opt for the right rewards, prioritise and think long-term – ask yourself what do you have to do to now that will really safeguard your family’s future. If you have found really significant savings, you should be taking professional advice about investments that will really cement your future. Obviously life mustn’t always seem grim, there are times when you have earned and deserved a treat – but make sure that you have allowed for those treats in your budget.

5. One good approach is to do your utmost to eliminate debt, especially on items like credit cards.  If necessary go to borrow one capital sum, such as through a car title loan, to pay off all your cards and then cut them up and concentrate on paying off just one loan figure a month.

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