You may not think twice about updating your wardrobe, so why should your finances be any different. If you haven’t checked how your finances look for a long time then it may to time to whip them into shape. When it comes to money, many people are lazy, not on purpose, but many of us can are guilty of opening accounts or taking out mortgages and then forgetting about them for months or even years. From time to time you need to make sure that you look at your finances and give them a revamp, just like you would give your appearance.
Where To Start With Your Money
When it comes to managing your money you should start at the beginning and look at all your outgoings in comparison to you earnings, alarm bells should start ringing straight away if you find your outgoings are more than your earnings, but even if they are not, you could still find there is room for improvement.
Your second step should be to look at what comes out of your account routinely every month or bimonthly, this is things such as household bills, phone bills and any loans that you may be paying back. It is all too easy to put household bills to one side and take for granted the amount you normally pay cannot be lowered.
Every three to six months you should phone around a couple of gas and electricity suppliers to see if they can offer you a better deal than you are already on and ask them if they can keep you informed when they have new deals. You should do the same with you telephone, internet and any other regular bills you have coming out of your account.
One of the ways that gyms can make extra money is by people taking out gym memberships, normally when making New Year resolutions and continuing to pay them even when they do not go, don’t fall into this trap, if you are not using your membership cancel it. You may also find there are other ways that you can still exercise without having to pay gym membership, it may work out cheaper to buy things such as weights or an exercise video and do your exercise yourself from home.
Mortgage And Loan Payments
One of the biggest outgoings you are likely to have is your mortgage and loan payments. You should make sure that you remortgage your current deal every time it comes to an end in order to get the best deal. This may mean getting in touch with your mortgage provider or mortgage adviser to discuss what your options are. Once your current deal comes to an end then it will revert to a higher rate unless you get in touch with your provider and remortgage onto a lower rate.
The same methodology applies to any loans you may have, if you have savings stashed away you should think about using them to pay off any loans you have. You may not like the idea of this but it will help when managing your money and prove cheaper in the long run as you will not be paying as much interest on your loan. After a couple of years of paying back your loan you should look at what other loan companies are offering and whether it would be cheaper to pay your existing loan off using a new loan at a lower interest rate.
Credit And Store Cards
It’s easy to be tempted to adopt the “buy now pay later” mentality when it comes to using your credit cards. If you are finding that your bank balance at the end of every month is running a bit low then you may need to consider taking a break from your credit and store cards. Store cards are a good idea when you need a bit of extra money and buying something expensive and want the one off discount, but unless you are willing to pay off your bills on time, then you will not be saving money.
The best way to keep track of your money is to carry a notepad around with you and write down everything that you spend, you will soon find that you are spending more than you thought and that there is a lot you can cut down on, for example making your lunch instead of buying it, it is the little changes that can lead to you saving money.
Giving yourself a money makeover can be just as rewarding as giving your appearance a revamp but you get the extra bonus of being able to save yourself some money.