Trying to save more money but just can’t get there? Welcome to the 21st century, first world style. We are constantly bombarded with special offers to buy that special something that you just can’t live without. An entire industry exists who’s sole purpose is to convince you to part with your money – thousands of talented professionals with limitless resources vs your wallet. How can you ever get ahead?
It’s not going to be easy but we’ve got 5 things you can start doing today win back control:
- Budgets are not what you think they are. Whenever the word budget is mentioned, most people think of countless rows and rows in an Excel spreadsheet. Checking your receipts to add up your actual expenditure and then measure this against the budget amount. It sounds rather dry and boring, and often, it is. As a result of this, most people don’t even try. The expression “a little goes a long way” is very pertinent in this case. Just a basic understanding of where your money is going is going to give you the ability to take action and make changes. You and your partner get takeaway for lunch while at work each day ($8.50 each per meal) and eat out twice a week ($45 for dinner)? Throw in that morning coffee on the way to work for each of you ($3 each) and it all adds up to around $10,260 per year. While there is nothing wrong with this, it’s good to know.
- Get value for money. While value is a relative term, it’s thrown around a little bit too casually these days. “Oh wow, that Bentley is only $200,000, that’s great value considering it was $450,000 brand new”. Value is what it’s worth to you, what it’s worth to your future. If it’s a case of having the house deposit this year or next, or buying that new laptop – value becomes a lot better to understand. While it may be 20% off for this week only, it does not represent value to what your’e trying to create for your future.
- Stay focused on what you want. This is an extension of getting value for money. The basis of a good financial plan is being able to stick to it. Life these days is busier than ever and information overload is forever present. It is very easy to lose focus of your long term goals and ambitions. The further you move away from your goals, the less likely you are to achieve them.
- Have belief in what you’re trying to achieve. If you’re going to start a journey, you’re unlikely to get very far if you either don’t like where you’re going or don’t believe that your’e going to get there. Saving takes effort, it takes practice and it takes time and you’re unlikely to put in the effort that is needed to reach your long term savings goals if you don’t actually think you’re going to get there. As a result of this, you’re then highly unlikely to achieve your goals – which will make you right about your ability, which is probably the worst consolation prize you could get.
- Success doesn’t happen overnight. Good things to take time as well as effort and focus. Learn to be patient or you’ll end up sabotaging your efforts through making short term decisions that are more out of frustration and the need to reward yourself. Common examples of this may be taking a holiday because you deserve a break or buying a new TV or handbag which eats into your house deposit (and it often comes with frustration that you haven’t saved enough).
If you’re already doing all this and are looking for more effective ways to potentially save money, it may be worthwhile speaking to one of our financial planners. You’ve got nothing to lose as our first consultation is free so drop us a message or get on the phone today.