With 2012 fast approaching, it’s time for most people to sit down and consider new year’s resolutions and goals. This time of the year is very important as it allows people to review both the good and bad choices they’ve made, and decide on changes they can implement the following year to improve their habits.
Whether it be joining a gym, promising to spend more time with family or planning a career change, all of these decisions are important and if planned and implemented correctly can have a positive change on your life.
One of the most important things to consider when planning your new years goals are financial resolutions. Whether you have a credit card or home loan, it is vital to review your finances to ensure that you are receiving the cheapest option, so that you can maximise your savings and reduce debt quicker.
So, it’s time to work out your budget and get financially fit for 2012! Three steps that will help you get organised are:
1. Review your previous budget – how did you go with adhering to this for 2011? What things can you change? Where do you need to improve?
2. Check your savings account – note where your money is going, and if this is in line with your budget. Where can you cut down and what can you change for the new year? What sort of interest are you earning? Can you earn more?
3. Analyse your debt – this is the biggest outlay for most people. Whether you have a credit card, personal finance or a home loan, all of these liabilities need to be reviewed. When reviewing debt you must ask yourself these questions:
a. How much do I owe?
b. What is my current interest rate?
c. How much would I save if I moved to a cheaper rate?
d. What can I do with the money I would save?
With the recent interest rate cuts being passed on by some lenders, and not others, it is important to confirm that you are getting a good deal with your credit provider. By switching to a cheaper home loan and reducing your repayments, you will be able to dramatically change your finances for the new year and be able to do more with the savings you receive from switching. So compare home loans, credit card providers and interest rates, to ensure that you are getting the cheapest option for your scenario. We have a good comparison calculator on our website so you can work out the dollar for dollar savings.
With saving money being one of the most common new years resolutions, it’s important that you put a plan into place, set your goals, analyse all accounts and take time to learn more about your buying and spending patterns so that you can make more out of your money in 2012. Naturally – the biggest outlay, debt, is the area that you really need to focus on to ensure that you are able to reduce your debt and save money faster.
By setting goals, both personally and financially, it gives you a chance to learn more about what you want to achieve and how you can make these dreams a reality.
By Marie Mortimer. You can follow Marie on Google+
Image credit: Mihow