How to Improve Personal Financial Skills

how to improve personal financial skills

How to Improve Personal Financial Skills

Learning how to improve personal financial skills is a great idea if you want to get ahead in this economy. With the average Australian earning only about two-thirds of the pay of their male peers, and with the average female earning only about one-half of what their male counterparts earn, it is understandable that many people have found themselves in a tough financial situation. However, learning how to manage your finances and develop an effective personal budgeting strategy can make a big difference in your overall finances.

Determine The Areas You Need to Focus

If you are serious about improving your personal financial skills, the first step is to determine what areas you need to focus on. One of the best ways to do this is to sit down and visualize how your finances currently look. What bills are due? What are the balances on your checking and savings accounts? Once you have a clear picture of your current financial situation, it will be easier to learn how to better manage your finances.

Design a Personal Financial Plan

The next thing you should do is to devise a personal financial plan. This means figuring out what steps you are going to take to pay off debt, save money, and invest for the future. Your plan will depend on how much money you have to work with. It can be difficult knowing how to save money for the future when you have no idea what it is you are going to put in your savings. However, having a concrete plan for how to better manage your finances and get out of debt will help you achieve your goals in the future.

Develop  Strategies on How to Improve Personal Financial Skills

Here are the strategies that you can use to effectively improve personal financial skills.

  • Implement budgeting techniques

The final step in learning how to improve personal financial skills is to implement good personal budgeting techniques. These include setting aside a set amount of money for emergencies, funding retirement accounts, paying down debt, and saving money for rainy days. By creating a budget, you will be able to see at a glance where all of your money is going. This will help you know in what areas of your life money is being spent unnecessarily, which will allow you to make the necessary changes.

  • Be conscious of your spending habits

One of the most important parts of learning how to improve personal financial skills is to keep up with your personal finances. You need to stay aware of your personal spending habits. If you find yourself buying things that are not really needed, such as the latest cell phone or a new flat screen television, it may be time to review your budget and determine how you can trim expenses.

Also, if you find yourself accumulating large credit card bills, try to use a debit card for purchases instead of a credit card. This will help you track your spending, which will help you quickly identify areas in need of immediate funds.

  • Organize your financial life

In order to learn how to improve personal financial skills, it is important to have a firm understanding of all of the three major areas of your financial life: savings, income, and debt. Each area should be examined individually. For example, if you spend a great deal of money on entertainment, you may want to trim those expenses to increase your savings and in turn reduce your debt. On the other hand, if you find that you are unable to make minimum payments on your credit cards, you may want to increase your income. By examining each aspect of your personal finances, you can learn how to improve your personal financial skills as necessary.

  • Devise an effective plan in saving money

The final step to learning how to improve personal financial skills is to develop an effective plan for saving your money and investing it for the future. You should consider having emergency funds set up, either through a family savings account or some other type of fund. You should also have a savings plan for your retirement. Regardless of how you decide to fund these accounts, you should make sure that they are maintained in a responsible manner.

Learning how to improve personal financial skills is not difficult. In fact, it can be very rewarding to learn how to manage your money properly. If you are looking for ways to start doing this right now, consider investing in a few inexpensive booklets that teach you how to manage your own personal finances. You may even want to look for a few books on personal finance that are available in your local library. By learning how to manage your own money properly, you can be on your way to financial freedom sooner than you might think!

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What is a Mortgage Broker?

What is a Mortgage Broker and Do Your Really Need One?

Are you trying to decide whether or not to use the services of a mortgage broker? Are you having trouble understanding the benefits a mortgage broker can offer? This article will help to clarify the many benefits and advantages that come from using a mortgage broker’s services when applying for a home loan in Australia. With a basic understanding of mortgage broker services, many Australians will find it easier to make an informed decision when it comes to getting help with their mortgage needs.

What is a Mortgage Broker?

A mortgage broker is a person who represents a majority of Australia’s mortgage lending institutions. They work in the same way as an insurance broker, offering a person a variety of options from many different companies. When you work with a bank or lender’s representative, they can only offer the products available through the lending institution that employs them. They may not even be aware of products offered by other lenders. By using a mortgage broker, you are working with an independent representative who can analyze your situation and help you choose the best product and lender for your needs.

Getting All the Bases Covered

A mortgage broker can work as an agent for most Credit Unions, finance companies, Australian banks, Trust Companies and private lenders. When you visit a mortgage broker seeking property or home financing, they can analyze your situation and recommend products from a variety of lending institutions that they have a relationship with.

In Australia, a mortgage broker is a trained licensed professional whose business is regulated by the American Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC). The Government controlled ASIC offers consumers a level of protection. The broker’s license is meant to show that when a borrower uses the services of a mortgage broker, they are working with a person who has a thorough knowledge of mortgage products and can provide a certain level of service when meeting the needs of their clients.

How Does Using a Mortgage Broker Benefit a Borrower?

You Can Save a Lot of Time: If you are shopping for a mortgage by applying directly to the lenders, you may have to go to 4-5 major Australian banks. This can be time-consuming since each bank would want you to fill out their application and meet with their representative, without even knowing if you qualify. With a mortgage broker, you will meet with one person when it’s convenient for you and they will shop for your mortgage so that you don’t have to waste your time.

One Credit Score Inquiry: When most Australians go shopping for a mortgage they don’t realize that each bank will initiate a credit inquiry. In some cases, these inquiries can affect your credit score. If you go to several banks you may have multiple inquiries listed on your credit report. A mortgage broker only needs to do one credit inquiry. After getting your credit score they can move forward with shopping for a lender.

You Can Save Money: Many people are under the false impression that they will have to pay a mortgage broker for their services. Some hesitate to work with a mortgage broker because they believe it will be expensive. What they don’t know is that most mortgage brokers don’t charge the borrower any fees. They are paid by the lender for bringing them business. When you use a mortgage broker you receive free unbiased advice about mortgages and home buying.

You Get the Best Rates: Mortgage brokers rely on repeat business and referrals, so they don’t play around when it comes to getting their clients a good deal. By using a mortgage broker, you guarantee that you’ll get the best rate that you qualify for. Some banks even offer special rates to mortgage brokers in order to get them to bring more business their way. Using a mortgage broker is often the only way to get these special rates.

You Get Fast Approvals: A mortgage broker can get your loan approved in as little as 24 to 72 hours. Most retail banks are not able to get an approval that quickly. You get a fast approval without any additional fees and at the best interest rate available. If you go directly to the lenders you may need to wait weeks for an approval and have to waste time negotiating a better rate.

You Feel More at Ease: A lender or bank representative is interested in getting their job done. A mortgage is interested in building a relationship so that you’ll come back to them the next time you need a mortgage or refer other people to their business. That means they’ll take the time to explain the mortgage process, answer any questions and provide comfort to first-time home buyers.

The mortgage broker will take the time to read through the terms and conditions of your mortgage to ensure you don’t get any surprises later on. They will also provide you with options in case you do not like the lender or the terms of the mortgage being offered. This allows you to make an educated choice and feel at ease about your final decision.

                                 

Where Will You Go the Next Time You Need Mortgage Financing?

Australians no longer have to place their trust in a bank or lending institution when it comes time to get a mortgage. Consumers have a vast amount of information available to them, which can give them an advantage when it comes to getting a mortgage. A mortgage broker is one more source of information for a borrower. They can not only help you understand the mortgage process, they can also help you analyse the products available and choose the right one to suit your needs.

Using a mortgage broker does not mean you’re choosing between the broker and your bank. A mortgage broker can help you apply to a particular bank if you choose. However, if you go to your bank, it’s not likely that they’ll tell you whether another bank offers better terms or has a lower rate. That’s the benefit of using a mortgage broker, they offer you the chance to choose which lender will be best for you.

 

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