Whether you’re already making good progress or have fallen by the wayside, here are five tips for making sure your finances are still on track coming towards the end of the year.
1. Be aware of your outgoings
Want to get your spending under control? Being aware of your outgoings is a good place to start.
Compare how much money is coming into your account with how much you are spending to get a clear picture of whether you need to cut back, and by how much. Analyse your spending habits over the past month – were those purchases all necessary? What could you have gone without?
2. Reassess your commitments
The trouble with direct debits is that it’s all too easy to forget about them – which is great if you’re direct debiting money into your savings account, but not so good when you’ve signed up for something and forgotten about it.
Look at all your direct debits over the past year, and assess whether you still need them in place. If you’re not using your gym membership or not reading your magazine subscription, perhaps it’s time to cancel and put the money to better use elsewhere.
3. Get the best deal
Most of us have some sort of utility bills or insurance coverage to pay for, and it’s easy to fall into the trap of staying with the same providers for an extended period without comparing what’s on offer elsewhere.
Your mobile phone contract or annual travel insurance are just a couple of areas where it could pay to seek out a better deal rather than simply renew.
4. Start an emergency fund
Aussies have identified approximately 3 months’ income as an ideal amount to have saved for a rainy day, according to ING DIRECT’s Financial Wellbeing Index. You might never need it, but having some cash set aside gives you peace of mind in case you’re hit with an unexpected crisis.
Don’t have a ton of cash to spare? That’s fine, just start small and save steadily. Even $20 a week will add up to over $1000 over the course of a year!
5. Direct Debit your savings
Make saving a non-negotiable part of your financial behaviour by setting up a regular transfer from your everyday to your savings account. If you can organise with your employer to transfer a proportion of your pay directly to your savings before it even hits your transaction account, then even better!
The information is current as at publication. Any advice on this website does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs and you should consider whether it is appropriate for you. Deposit products, savings products, credit card and home loan products are issued by ING, a business name of ING Bank (Australia) Limited ABN 24 000 893 292, AFSL and Australian Credit Licence 229823. ING Living Super (which is part of the ING Superannuation Fund ABN 13 355 603 448) is issued by Diversa Trustees Limited ABN 49 006 421 638, AFSL 235153 RSE L0000635. The insurance cover offered by ING Living Super is provided by Metlife Insurance Limited ABN 75 004 274 882, AFSL 238096. ING Home and Contents Insurance is issued by Auto & General Insurance Company Limited (AGIC) ABN 42 111 586 353 AFSL Licence No 285571 as insurer. It is distributed by Auto & General Services Pty Ltd (AGS) ABN 61 003 617 909 AFSL 241411 and by ING as an Authorised Representative AR 1247634 of AGS. All applications for credit are subject to ING's credit approval criteria, and fees and charges apply. You should consider the relevant Product Disclosure Statement, Terms and Conditions, Fees and Limits Schedule, Financial Services Guide, Key Facts Sheet and Credit Guide available at ing.com.au when deciding whether to acquire, or to continue to hold, a product. Before interacting with us via our social media platforms, please take a minute to familiarise yourself with our Social Media User Terms https://www.ing.com.au/pdf/Social_Media_User_Terms.pdf.