Simple tips for a better financial future.
Financial housekeeping simply means staying on top of your finances. No matter what your current income or outlook, better financial housekeeping can always make a positive difference. These top tips will help you to get there faster.
Record your expenses. It’s very easy to underestimate just how much you spend – but not so much when it’s there in black and white. Keep track of your expenses and outgoings and then review them regularly so that you’re not making lots of wild purchases that are throwing your budget off track.
Budget for everything. Plan how to make your money work for you within your realistic limits and you’ll never get into trouble with your finances.
Be a model borrower and customer. Prioritise making all your payments on time, from bills through to repaying personal loans or credit cards. This will improve your credit score and ensure that you have good standing if you need to borrow again in the future.
Make use of automation. Automate payments with direct debt, automate your savings with standing orders from a main account into a savings account. You can even use a personal finance assistant AI like Cleo to automatically move money based on smart decisions related to your savings goals.
Separate your accounts. Keep your savings in one account, pay your bills from another account and make sure these are separate from any bank accounts that have a credit facility attached. If you’re able to separate out your various cash streams then you’ll be able to manage them better.
Save, save, save. Whatever you can afford every month put it aside into a savings account or a pension. It’s never too early to start ensuring that you’re going to have a comfortable retirement.
Look for the budget savings. When you start to budget you’ll probably find that there are some regular expenses that eat up a lot of your budget. The smart move is to find ways to reduce these more substantial expenses, whether that’s switching your energy supplier or finding a cheaper gym membership elsewhere.
Set financial goals. It’s much easier to adapt the way you manage your finances if you’re aiming for something. Even if you don’t have that much spare cash right now it’s always useful to set financial objectives to keep your mind focused on what you’re trying to achieve and where you want to go next.
Check in with your finances often. The more you’re looking at your numbers, analysing and projecting them, the easier it will be to understand the implications of every day decisions on your current and future finances. This is especially important if you are thinking about borrowing money for a major purchase such as a home. Check in once a week if you can so that you’re never in the dark.
Learn to shop smart. Use discount codes and vouchers, shop around online to make sure that you’re getting the best prices and buy second hand where it’s sensible to do so. Wise purchasing decisions will provide the foundation for sound financial housekeeping.