As a new year dawns, young couples and older couples alike are faced with credit cards that are on the verge of a new year. How can we turn our finances around with peace of mind when money is a stressor for 43% of Britains? Here are 10 tips to put into practice.
1. Plan ahead
Look forward to the next year by scanning each quarter. Think about the foreseeable events that are a source of expense: Valentine’s Day, children’s birthdays, lover’s birthday, etc. Next February, homeowners should already start paying taxes. To avoid stress, why not ask our institution to deduct our school and municipal taxes from our mortgage payments? Some institutions offer this option.
2. Precious time
How can we save when we feel like workaholics? First we have to think about what we do. Is a trip to the movies really necessary when for two adults and two children, it costs close to £40, and popcorn is not included. During the holidays, we’re slowly going into savings mode in order to spend more time together. We bring out the board game that has been sleeping on the shelf for months. We have fun together.
3. Valentine’s Day
Is it really necessary this weekend of love in Charlevoix or in London? “They never do anything for us. The children always come first and it won’t cost much, we use this package (Tuango or others). Finally, with dinners and breakfasts not included, the bill easily reached double if not triple the initial amount of £150. This year, we are creating a festive atmosphere with hearts, angels and candles for a quiet romantic dinner.
This means changing tires or brakes. A good mechanic will tell his customer a few months in advance. During the routine check-up, the mechanic told me: “Expect to change your brakes in the spring. It’s going to cost about £400.
5. Graduation dance
Is your son or daughter graduating from high school next June? It costs a fortune to pay for a dress or tuxedo. For girls, you have to add a make-up session, manicure, and the purchase of high-heeled shoes. Invoice: minimum £500. In order not to be caught off guard, an amount is placed in a savings account in January to avoid having to resort to loan.
In 2020, do you dream of leaving and breaking the routine? A friend of mine has gone with her two children to a campsite in the France. “We each budgeted £50 per paycheck or £200 per month for 10 months,” she says.
7. Back to school
The famous back-to-school season. Every year, parents are surprised at the exorbitant cost of this period, which is so predictable. Go back in time. How much did the new pair of shoes and clothes cost? This year, there’s no question of paying on credit. As of January, in London, there are 679,000 families with two or more children who will receive an average of £779 more in provincial allowances. That is about £70 a month. Why not put it in an envelope or savings account? In 9 months, you will have a margin of £900 to cover these expenses.
8. Extracurricular Enrolment and Education
Does your child love skating or hockey? This includes significant costs for equipment and registration. Some parents are talking about £800. Also, in 17 or 20 years, they will be in university. A course right now costs about £300. By subscribing to an education account, you won’t have to worry about that expense. This security is priceless when you’re at a time in your life, at 50 or 60, when the pace of work slows down. And knowing that your children will be able to attend university without necessarily working outside the home is a real relief.
9. Maintenance costs, appliances, etc.
Go around your home and take a good look at each room and the shed. Your old fridge is already showing some signs of exhaustion. Expect a good £800 to £900 (the cheapest on the market). Take a look at the carpet in the entrance, the paint that hasn’t been done for 15 years or the roof that will need repairs.
10. Emergency Fund
There has to be an emergency fund for all of this. We start putting £2, £5 or £10 a week into an account. After five months, a year, we have a good little nest egg for unexpected expenses. That way, we avoid credit. “When we pay with our money, we have no debt to anyone and no interest to pay,” explains Financial Reorganization Advisor at Roy & Associates.
If your debts are causing headaches and insomnia, we make an appointment with a specialist who will advise you on how to deal with them. Solutions exist. Above all, we avoid waiting. Counsellors are there to explain what to do as an offer to creditors. “It’s a mix between debt consolidation and bankruptcy,” says advisor.
When people come out of his office, he sees unspeakable relief in their eyes. Finally, they don’t have to carry that burden on their shoulders anymore.
Finally, the ultimate advice is to do a budget, a tedious exercise. By meticulously recording our expenses, rent, car payments, electricity, cell phone charges while including the amount of our debt payments.