If you’re in your thirties or forties, chances are you’re juggling a career, kids, a mortgage and home improvements – yet amongst these financial responsibilities lie opportunities to get more from your money, according to Matthew McCabe* from Judge Financial Planning.
“It’s common to feel stretched at this stage of life with seemingly endless bills and little disposable income or money to invest but smart choices now can make a big difference to your financial security and flexibility,” he says.
One key is managing your debt and cash flow. The demands of buying a home, paying all your children’s needs and lifestyle expenditure can be hard to balance. By doing a budget and taking into account your income and expenditure – including things like holidays, emergency expenses, and even coffees and newspapers – you can see where your money is going and identify where you could cut back. It also helps you realise how much you actually have to spend, rather than just putting things on credit card.
Interest on loans can really add up so pay off your debts as a priority, with the highest interest loans paid first. Another idea is to consolidate your debts under one lower interest rate.
“Some people have money sitting in a savings account or investment which, once you take tax on investment earnings into account, is producing less than the interest they’re paying on their loan. Debts with non-deductible interest like their mortgage, credit cards and personal loans should be the priority,” McCabe says.
At this stage of life most people have a flourishing career and good earning capacity but remember sickness, injury or death could happen any time. By taking adequate cover with income protection, death and disability insurance you can secure peace of mind for you and your family if something unexpected were to happen to you.
Many are surprised how re-arranging their finances can release money to invest elsewhere.
“Taking a bit of time to plan can help you balance immediate needs with long-term goals, and work out how and where you should be investing. Strategies like positive gearing or packaging your remuneration a bit differently could provide real benefits to some,” McCabe says.
“Don’t just let life happen to you at this busy stage. Your Judge adviser can show you how to make the most of your finances and help you achieve the lifestyle you want. You don’t have to be wealthy to get value from seeing a financial adviser.”
*Matthew McCabe is an Authorised Representative of RI Advice Group Pty Limited (ABN 23 001 774 125), Australian Financial Services Licence 238429. This editorial does not consider your personal circumstances and is general advice only. You should not act on any recommendation without considering your personal needs, circumstances and objectives. We recommend you obtain professional financial advice specific to your circumstances.