If you've encountered a cash emergency of some kind in recent times, you're not alone. Many Australians have undergone this type of trauma on occasion, and it may be down to a lack of awareness or understanding from a financial perspective. In fact, this could be due to poor financial management in several different areas, and it may be time for you to assess exactly where you are to avoid any issues in the future. But where should you start?
Unravelling the Complexity
Most people have a relatively complex economic setup with many different lines of credit, a diversified investment portfolio and variable income. The larger your family unit, the more complex this is likely to be difficult to manage.
If you've encountered some of these unexpected financial shocks yourself, you need to get to the bottom of it. This begins with an analysis of exactly where you are, presenting you with your starting point.
Where To Start
Begin by gathering information about all of your inflows and outflows. Gather historical information for the previous year from your credit card statements, investment reports and bank accounts. Often, this is available as a download through your online portal.
Now, itemise all your expenditure in various categories. These categories can range from essential (like clothing or utilities) to optional (such as golf course membership).
You can now begin to review your spending habits and your income to look for patterns. This will help you understand where your money goes and comes from so that you can begin to control it properly.
You may wonder whether your investments were diverse enough to give you the best return or whether you should allocate money in different areas instead. You need to look for patterns in your credit card spending to see if you can cut down on your balance and save money on interest. You may be able to use calculators to figure out how much money you're wasting on credit card interest each year, and for many people, this can be quite a shock.
How To Move Forward
Taking your time with this exercise is important, but you should not make any snap decisions based on the outcome. After all, you want to ensure that you do not make your financial position worse than it is and be careful in your judgement. However, as many people find this a daunting proposition, you may also benefit from the advice of a financial professional. They have seen all of this before and can typically point help you to make some shrewd decisions.
For more information, contact a financial management firm in your area.Share