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In fact, having financial goals makes saving easier and fun.


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When you feel tempted to spend beyond your budget, your saving goals are a reminder of the fun and gratification awaiting you. When you combine goal setting with budgeting, you have the benefit of a clear target to aim for plus a detailed plan of how to get there! They describe the outcome of the goal and the actions needed to attain it. The impact of SMART goals instead of vague goals is that you are committing yourself to a certain outcome and timeline, and can be sure of what you've achieved when that milestone comes.

There's a definitive success that can be celebrated! SMART saving goal example:. Have you found that your savings keep getting eaten up by unexpected expenses? Or you run out of money before payday? The key to taking control of your financial situation is to create a budget. A budget is the cornerstone of money management and the only way to properly take control of your finances. With a budget in place, you can see your exact financial position and future outlook at a glance.

All your bills, expenses, savings and goals are mapped out in front of you. As you make changes to your budget, you see your short and long-term projections change before your eyes. A long-range, detailed budget will take into account all of your income, bills and expenses for the next 12 months. As well as including your weekly living expenses groceries, rent or mortgage payments, petrol etc.

Budgeting can provide deep insights into your finances and reveal where money can be saved and bill payments can be smoothed to make cash flow management easier. And once you have a budget in place, there are less surprises, which makes it easier to save regularly. The budgets people create for themselves are often short-term pay-to-pay or month-to-month or manual, which can make the budget difficult to manage. A good budget will be long-range, detailed and automated.

How to manage a mortgage with a growing family

For help with budgeting, contact us on 02 for a free, no-obligation budget consultation. One of the tricks to saving money is to never let it touch your pocket — or wallet or purse or everyday bank account! Open a dedicated bank account for your savings so that your cash reserves are kept separate from the money you use for your living expenses and bills. The harder it is to access the account, the better. Enjoy watching your savings grow! The balance may start out small, but your savings will add up over time.

When you have a few thousand dollars saved, transfer the balance into a term deposit that attracts a higher rate of interest. The payroll administrator at your work can set up the disbursement for you or you can schedule the transfer to occur automatically between your accounts. The trick is to separate your savings from your spending money before you see it. This trick plays on the fact that most people adjust their lifestyle to suit their income.

The good news is that lifestyle adjustments are often minor and unnoticeable, such as eating at home more often. A common misconception is that you need a high income to be able to save. This is not true. In fact, high earners are often high spenders. The symbols of wealth associated with high incomes big house, luxury car, designer clothes etc. For the majority of people, the ability to save is more affected by how much they spend than how much they earn. When I get a the opportunity, I put larger bills in the house. Plan Food It is easy to forget to eat!

I get so busy making sales, negotiating prices and meeting new people that I completely forget to eat. It is helpful if you setup a lunch delivery ahead of time. In our case, my husband does a doughnut or bagel run in the morning and then a sandwich or pizza run in the afternoon.

On the really good sale days, you will barely get a bathroom break or a chance to sit!

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I always list my price as more than I want so that there is room to negotiate. Mark down prices as the day goes on, so you are not left with too many unsold items at the end. I have a detailed post on pricing and negotiating Here. Kids walking in with their parents are very happy to see the free box of toys. I never thought to sell, partly used perfume bottles, but I sold five of them at our last sale. Kitchen items that I have too many of like utensils, and extra pots and pans are popular. Whenever I upgrade a electronic or household item, like an iron, mixer or blow dryer I save the old one for the next sale.

The more you sell, the less you will need to bring back in the house. As people enter my yard at the end of the day, I start bargaining. People love paying less and I often make a nice bit of money at the end of the day.

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While I am condensing and cleaning up, I also add items to the free box. When a customer buys several items, I often throw in some freebies. I never realized how important it is to set up attractive displays, even at a yard sale! I usually just throw the stuff haphazardly in the front yard and now I know why I always have so much left over! I also found all of your info on pricing extremely helpful! Glad you found it helpful. After all the time and effort you put in preparing, selling lots of items and making a nice profit should happen!

6 Conversations Every Couple Absolutely Must Have Before Buying a Home - Wealthfront Blog

If the items are easy to see and they have several tables set up, I am much more likely to stop in to browse. All of this will help you avoid buying more house than you can afford, even if your lender approves you for more. Not only will that reduce your interest rate and long-term costs, but it will eliminate the need for private mortgage insurance PMI.

Wait, is renting suddenly looking more appealing? The last thing you want is to find your dream home and then get held up on getting approved for a mortgage because of erroneous items on your credit report. Credit reports looking clean? Now pull your credit scores.

Most mortgage lenders use FICO credit scores, which you can get free. Since lenders look at a range of factors, including your DTI, down payment, and credit report when determining your mortgage interest rate , you want them all in fighting shape. Though it might not sound significant, a 0. Like any other part of scoping out your shared life, planning to buy a home means mutually committing to priorities.


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  • What does your dream house look like, and where is it located? Are you salivating over the stainless steel appliances of a modern condo? Or the screened-in porch of a quaint craftsman? If you plan to have kids, research the best school districts; if you plan to turn this property into a source of extra income , look for an area popular with renters.


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    • Just dive in. Is it more important to get more space or have a more perfect location? Are you more focused on resale potential or proximity to where you work? Do you want a quiet street more than you want to be in a particular school district? It might be effortless or it might be a painful process involving hard-to-swallow compromises. Either way, we recommend doing it over a box of donuts or bottle s of wine. Fixer-uppers can be so tempting: The prices are lower, and the idea of DIY-ing as a couple or, okay, hand-picking the perfect contractors is super romantic.

      That can be sincerely appealing to some people and a total burden to others. So before throwing cash into a potential money pit, consider how much time you and your partner will want to devote to its renovation. From a financial standpoint, a fixer-upper can be an incredible investment. Even if you are mutually agreed that you want to buy a home that is fully move-in ready, home ownership in general means a long list of ongoing maintenance tasks, like mowing the lawn and cleaning the gutters. Your relationship might be the smartest investment you can imagine making, but…life happens.