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We often associate Spring with renewal, fresh beginnings and cleaning and decluttering at home, but what about your finances? As the real estate market ramps up, there’s no better time to embark on a financial spring clean, especially if you’re in the market to buy.

A clean financial state not only improves your chances of securing a mortgage, but also sets you up for a more stable financial future – so let’s look at some of the ways you can tidy up your finances:

Refresh (or set) your budget

It’s easy to set and forget a budget – or not set one at all.

Dinners out, streaming subscriptions, coffees and impulse shopping can quickly add up. When applying for a home loan, this spending is what lenders tend to scrutinise – so why not clean this spending up now. Have a look at our previous article, How your Daily Spending is Impacting Your Borrowing Power for some tips.

Review your credit score

Do you know what your credit score is? Or how you can improve it? Money Smart have made is easy with their credit score guide:

Cancel or consolidate subscriptions

Netflix, Disney+, Kayo, One Pass, Amazon Prime, gym memberships – monthly subscriptions can quickly add up, and for many of us they are often left unused.

Why not look at all of the weekly/monthly/annual subscriptions you have and then decide what can stay, go or swap for a cheaper (or free) option. You may find that you end up saving hundreds each month on subscriptions you simply don’t need.

Reassess your financial goals

Do you have financial goals? If so, when’s the last time you checked in with them? If not, why not start now? By setting a goal, you have something to work towards and be aware of.

Some great financial goals to get you started include:
– Sticking to a budget
– Increasing your income
– Saving for a house deposit
– Putting money towards retirement
– Breaking the paycheck-to-paycheck cycle

Re-think your spending

Have you ever stopped to look at what you’re spending, where you’re spending it and how much you’re spending?

You might be surprised to find that those small regular expenses quickly add up and impact your saving goals – and these expenses are often what lenders scrutinise.

Have a look at your income and expenses as a whole and see where there’s room to reduce expenses, increase savings or change your spending habits to be more in line with your financial goals.

Take inventory of debts

What money comes out of your account each month? Could you consolidate or remove some of those debts? Paying off your various debts via a single loan with a competitive interest rate not only helps you save money, it also leaves you with one simple payment date each month. This, in turn, may help reduce financial stress.

Debt consolidation is something we can help you with. Want to get started? Contact us today.

Prepare for the unexpected

Accidents happen, illness occurs, appliances break and all when you least expect it. An emergency fund can be the difference between an event being a crisis or an inconvenience and it’s so important that you make sure your emergency fund is fully funded and up to date.

Three to six months of essential expenses saved in a separate bank account is the general rule of thumb for an emergency fund, but even a small amount can make a big difference. If you don’t have the funds to transfer right away, why not start small and make a plan to build that fund with weekly or monthly deposits.

Make sure you’re getting the best deal

Are you paying too much for your insurance or household bills? Whilst many companies offer incredible deals to sign up with them, very few companies offer great deals or incentives for existing customers.

Many of us are too busy (or just don’t think about it) to check whether or not we’re getting the best deal. This typically means that we’re spending extra money each month for no reason.

Not sure where to start? We recommend comparing rates and deals on the below:
– Utilities (gas, electricity, water)
– Insurances (home, health, car)
– Internet and Phone Plans

Also be sure to let your current provider know that you’re looking for a better deal. More often than not, they’ll offer you a discount or match the price to retain your business.

Ready to get started?

By reviewing your credit, improving your financial health and rethinking your spending, you’ll be well on your way to achieving your homeownership goals.

Need some help to get started? Contact us today and let’s get ready to welcome the summer in your new home.

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