5 smart ways to spring clean your finances

5 smart ways to spring clean your finances

Spring is a great time to dust off the cobwebs and reorganise the linen cupboard. It is also a great time to reassess your finances, to make sure everything is running smoothly. Here are some strategies to ensure you are getting the most out of your money.

Dust the cobwebs off your budget

Checking in with your budget on a regular basis means you know where and when money is coming in, and where and when it is going. Are your income and expenses balancing out?

Reviewing your budget helps you recognise when the balance is off. A slow-earning month might mean you have to tighten the belt for a few weeks. Consider spending less on non-essentials and luxury items until the balance evens out.

Reviewing your budget helps you see where cuts can be made, so you have more money in your pocket. If you are in surplus, think about redirecting new found cash into your home loan, or your saving deposit.

Freshen up your insurance

Insurance is important when you own your own home. And insurance is a competitive market. Check in with your insurance broker, to make sure you are getting the best value for your money.

If your area has recently been affected by flood, fire, or storm, it’s worth making sure your insurance cover is still current. Insurance premiums may be affected by recent weather-related damage in your area, which is all the more reason to ensure your insurance is at the appropriate level.

Clean up your paperwork

Preparing tax at the end of the financial year can drain time and resources. But if you keep on top of your expenses and income throughout the year, it’s easier to tie it all together.

Use a financial program like MYOB or Excel spreadsheets to account for your money. Make sure your receipts and invoices are filed and easy to access. Keeping digital records is a tidier and more environmentally friendly way of staying organised.

Check your super and investments

If you’ve worked for a number of employers, it’s possible you’ve paid superannuation to different companies. If your super is spread across a number of providers, you could be paying more fees, and aren’t necessarily getting the best return on your dollar. Talk to your Financial Planner about possibly consolidating your super into one fund, or other options open to you in regard to your investment portfolio.

Likewise, go through your investment portfolio and make sure your investments are working for you. It might be time to do a serious cleanout.

Spruce up your mortgage

Unless you have a fixed rate mortgage, you might want to check in with your broker to make sure you are paying the most competitive mortgage rates.

Switching to a lower interest rate might mean you can lower your repayments each month. But if you are happy with your current repayments, keep paying the same amount and you will pay off your mortgage faster on the lower interest rate.

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DISCLAIMER: The information contained in this article is correct at the time of publishing and is subject to change. It is intended to be of a general nature only. It has been prepared without taking into account any person’s objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on this information, Smartline recommends that you consider whether it is appropriate for your circumstances. Smartline recommends that you seek independent legal, financial, and taxation advice before acting on any information in this article.