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Finance

How to Manage a Short-Term Shortfall in Your Budget

How to Manage a Short-Term Shortfall in Your Budget

A temporary decrease in your cash flow can create major problems for you. It may be difficult for you to make ends meet. Fortunately, there are ways that you can manage a shortfall in your budget.

Cut Out Unnecessary Things

If you want to know how to manage a shortfall, then you will need to start by reviewing your budget. You will free up more of your income if you get rid of the things that you do not need. For example, you can stop buying coffee every day. You can also pack your lunch instead of buying it.

The advantage of doing this is that you may be able to resolve your financial problems without borrowing money. The disadvantage of doing this is that you may have to make major sacrifices.

Responsibly Use Credit Cards and Loans

You can use your credit card or find an installment loan to cover your expenses in a short-term pinch. Make sure you only borrow what you need and can afford to pay back on time. This is one of the keys to borrowing money responsibly. One of the benefits of using a credit card or loan is that you do not have to pay the full balance off immediately.

You can make small payments every month. However, you will likely have to pay interest on a loan or credit card. The amount that you eventually pay back will be more than what you borrowed. Additionally, all lenders have requirements that have to be met.

Pawn an Item

If you have a valuable item, then you can pawn it to get money. Jewelry, electronics, and video consoles are examples of some the things that you can pawn. You will be able to quickly get cash if you pawn an item. You can also get the item back after you pay the pawn shop back.

However, you will lose the item if you cannot pay the pawn shop back. There is also a possibility that the pawn shop will not give you what the item is truly worth.

Pick up Extra Hours or Get a Second Job

You can get out of a bad financial situation by earning extra money. You can ask your employer if you can pick up extra hours. Working a few extra hours per week can help you bring in a lot more money. You may also want to pick up a second job or side source of income if possible.

Working extra hours can be a better option than borrowing money. You can make extra money that you will not have to worry about paying back. However, if you get a second job or work extra hours, then your life may be more stressful. You may find yourself getting burnt out. You will also have less time to spend with your friends and family.

You do not have to let a temporary shortfall ruin you financially. You can correct this problem by sticking to a budget and cutting out things you do not need. You can also borrow money or pawn an item. Additionally, you can work longer hours or pick up a second job. It is important to weigh the pros and cons of each option before you choose one.

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Finance

Finding Deals to Pay Necessary Bills

Take the time to save money

There is always a good time to sit down and think about your finances, to work out if you could actually be saving a little bit more than you already are. Savings don’t just have to be for a rainy day fund. Instead, you could be looking to a family holiday or to make sure your Christmas presents are extra special this year. So here are some suggestions for you to make sure you aren’t spending unnecessarily when you could be preparing for something big.

Bills

The bane of everyone’s life, bills. From electricity to water and everything in between we don’t want to pay them but we have to. Fortunately, there are options out there to help you save. Starting with household bills, consider using comparison websites that are designed to specifically reduce your outgoings. You might think it isn’t worth it, but actually, the savings can be quite significant especially with so many companies competing for your business.

In addition to running the house, you also have the other expenses. The ones we don’t need for heat or health, but we wouldn’t be able to do without. These are your phone, internet and other subscriptions. Once again you should be looking at comparison websites for your internet, but don’t be afraid to give your provider a call if you think you aren’t getting the best deal. Often the customer service representative is under instruction to keep business and will therefore go above and beyond to help you.

Finding Deals to Pay Necessary Bills

When it comes to mobile phones, the cost can be staggering. This is especially true when you have a family that all want their own data and text message options. However, the providers of these plans are starting to get wise to this and as a result fairer prices plans like Xfinity Mobile phones are starting to become more popular.

Make sure any bill you sign up for is done with thorough research. It may seem tiresome, but you’ll be thankful when you’re feet are up on the beach next year.

Food Shopping

Our grocery bills are also one of those things that can be significantly affected by having more mouths to feed. The average cost of a weekly food shop for a UK household is up to £89, but it can be reduced by shopping around and once again using the internet to help.

There is a bountiful of websites out there which are offering discount codes and vouchers to use in supermarkets around the country, so make sure you are taking advantage of these options when you are getting out there to shop.

There can sometimes seem to be a social stigma attached to using vouchers, but there shouldn’t be. We should take pride in finding good deals and paying less for our weekly shop when possible.

Once again, don’t think about the stress now of findings these deals. Think about the happy faces at Christmas when your hard-earned savings has helped the family to extra gifts.

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Finance

Kick High Bills To The Curb

A few ways you could lower your bills…

Nobody wants to spend all their hard-earned money on bills. But, for the average person, high bills are just an accepted part of life: something they put up with without question. The problem with this is that paying out lots of money on bills reduces your disposable income and prevents you from doing the things that you want to do with your life.

So what’s the solution? Here we’re going to take a look at some of the interesting ways you can reduce your high bills and get your outgoings under control.

Switch Energy Providers

Kick High Bills To The Curb

Energy providers operate a kind of cartel. There are only so many providers in the market, and so competition is necessarily low. Most people don’t go to the hassle of seeing whether another provider is willing to take them on for less money because they don’t think the savings will be that great.

But the market has changed a lot in recent years. Competition among price comparison websites has actually made it beneficial for many people to switch. Not only do you end up with a lower bill at the end of the month after changing contracts, but these sites will often throw in freebies to entice new customers. It’s not unusual, for instance, to receive gift vouchers for merely logging in and changing who supplies your energy.

Stop Paying For Data You Don’t Use

There are two types of phone contracts: contracts where you pay for both access to the mobile network and the handset, and deals which pay for the network only. Network-only contracts tend to be cheaper because you’re not paying off debt on the handset, but they still aren’t necessarily an efficient use of your resources. For instance, many people end up paying for data and minutes that they don’t use, and those unused data do not get rolled over or taken off their final bill. There are, however, some companies that do pay customers back when they don’t use all of their monthly allowances, providing much better value for money than standard providers.

Install Solar

Solar energy has come down in price dramatically over the last few years to the point where it’s economical in practically every location. Although it’s unlikely that solar will provide for all your energy needs, it can take up the slack for some of them, reducing the amount you are forced to rely on the grid. Pair solar with a battery and you can build up a ready supply of energy in the day and use it in the evening when you need it most.

Stop Leaving Appliances On Standby

Although the quantity of energy electronics use while on standby has gone down to negligible levels over the past decade, many other low-tech appliances haven’t followed suit. Coffee machines, for instance, can cost up to £10 a month to keep on standby. The same goes for electrically heated towel rails. These appliances are expensive to run, so use a smart plug or meter to ensure that they only operate when you need them.

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Finance

3 Ways To Recover Unhealthy Personal Finances

3 Ways to Recover Unhealthy Personal Finances

Ways you can recover

Life is full of ups and downs, just like our bank accounts. Sometimes, however, we need some extra help in order to get back on our feet after a particularly mean couple of months and the help is always within reach. If your finances have been suffering lately, or even for the last couple of years, you need to find ways to recover and nurse them back to health.

It is, in fact, possible to maintain a healthy financial state and live within your means as long as you pay attention to what you’re doing instead of ignoring the warning signs.

Here is a handful of ways to help you dig your way out of the financial pitfall and get back to prospering again.

#1 Go over your debt

The biggest problem to most people with poor personal finances is that the amount of debt they kept, consuming any hope of ever getting back on their feet. How are we supposed to be saving up for an emergency fund when those bills are putting us in minus each month?

If you haven’t tried debt consolidation yet, you should certainly give it a shot. It could, after all, be what you need in order to dig your way out of that hole and get back to saving money again. Start by having a look at https://www.debtconsolidation.co and go over the different options.

The point is that, by consolidation your debt, you’re making the monthly payments a bit more bearable and can actually gain an overview of all your debt.

3 Ways to Recover Unhealthy Personal Finances

#2 Slice your expenses

When you’re starting to get all of your financial ducks in a row, it’s time to look at what you can do to keep your finances healthy. Since you’ve been building up quite a bit of debt, chances are high that you’re spending more than you’re earning. You need to slice your expenses, in other words, and preferably as much as possible.

Live on rice and beans if you have to, sell your car and take the bus, spend your Sunday on cooking up lunch for every day of your working week – in short, do everything you can to cut down on that spending. Have a look at https://www.budgetbytes.com for some great and affordable recipes.

It may feel tough, to begin with, but this is what people do in order to stay afloat when recovering their finances and this is the only way for you to lead a healthier financial life.

3 Ways to Recover Unhealthy Personal Finances

#3 Work out a new budget

Finally, you need to sit down and work out a proper budget now that you’ve managed to sort out your debt and know how to cut down on your expenses. Maybe you’re even able to save up for that emergency fund now that you’re spending less money on eating out.

The most important part, however, is that you have enough money to pay off that debt. Focus on that, first of all, and enjoy the feeling of moving forward with your life even if you have to live off rice and beans for a while.

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Finance

Unique Debt-Relief Tricks That You Never Thought Of

Unique Debt-Relief Tricks That You Never Thought Of

You’re in debt but dying to get out of it? Join the club!

Almost everyone who has to pay off the minimum amount on their credit card each month wishes their account wasn’t overdrawn. Unfortunately, dreams don’t come true when you have the national average of £8,000 debt on your back. It’s not as if you can click your fingers and, POOF, it’s gone. Plus, the tried and tested methods are okay yet don’t seem to get you very far. After all, transferring the balance only prolongs the pain.

What you need is unique and effective relief advice, and you find it underneath.

Get Divorced

Wait, what?! Talking to expert divorce solicitors is only an option when you want to split up for good. At least, that’s the conventional way to use a lawyer. Another option is to break up in the eyes of the law to provide more opportunities. Think about trying to buy a house as a couple. If you or your partner has terrible credit, then the amount on your mortgage will be low and you’ll need to find ways to borrow extra. When you’re not married, you can get an individual loan and the best possible rates. It’s drastic but it works.

Start Haggling

Bartering isn’t a secret, yet it is something people in the west don’t do too often. Go to the Middle East and everyone haggles over every penny. Considering every little helps, it’s worth the effort. Start by going to your creditors and asking them for a discount. This might sound cheeky and unrealistic, but they want their money back and will go to great lengths. For instance, they might eliminate the interest and set up a payment plan. Next, you can trade services. Does the flat that you rent need decorating? If so, tell the landlord you’ll do it for one month’s rent and put the money towards your debts.

Unique Debt-Relief Tricks That You Never Thought Of

Join Uber

Not as a customer but as a driver. The best way to get out of debt is to increase your earning potential. The bad news is it’s historically difficult to do due to a lack of time, skills and opportunities. However, Uber is in demand around the country and all you need is a car and a licence to get started. Once you are part of the family, you can choose hours to work during the week to boost your budget. You can make your own schedule so it’s flexible and lucrative at the same time.

Learn Something New

Anyone who doesn’t have the qualifications can get them by going back to school. After university, people traditionally find a job and settle down. You are different because you want to learn something new which is why you need to enrol again. Don’t go down the classical route, though. Instead, find an online course or one at a night university. That way, you can continue your day job while boosting your qualifications and (hopefully) searching for a new job.

Are you thinking outside of the box enough to eliminate your debt?

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Finance

Are You Struggling To Achieve Financial Stability?

Are You Struggling To Achieve Financial Stability?

Are you struggling to achieve financial stability?

Being financially stable requires more than a decent income. That’s why so many people struggle with their money. Perhaps you find yourself in the same boat. But your salary might be better than you realise; it might simply be that you’re squandering it on unnecessary things. Financial stability is all about mastering money management. You can make your funds go much further if you think more carefully about the way in which you choose to spend or save your money. Here’s some advice that’ll help you to achieve financial stability.

Take a look at your monthly expenses.

The first way to achieve financial stability is to take a look at your monthly expenses. So many people spend more than they can afford. That’s the reason for widespread debt, but we’ll talk about that more in the next point. If you want to ensure that you live within your means and actually have some disposable income every month then you need to organise your expenditures more effectively. Make a note of how much money you need to set aside for the essentials in life. Calculate how much of your monthly income remains after those costs have been covered; that’s your excess income. But you shouldn’t aim to blow it all on luxuries. You need to limit yourself. You can set yourself a spending limit by taking out a certain amount of cash at the start of every month and calling that your “spending money”. Even if you spend it all, you’ll still have some disposable income left for your savings. Again, we’ll discuss that later in the article.

Also save money when it comes to your essential expenditures. You shouldn’t cut corners, obviously, but you might be spending more money on things such as food and electricity than is necessary. You might want to save money on your grocery bill by searching the internet for coupons and discount codes before you check out your online shopping basket (you can find coupons and vouchers to use in stores too). This could save you a lot of money on a weekly or a monthly basis. In terms of heftier monthly bills, such as your mortgage repayments, you might want to check out this reliable housing loan calculator to make sure that you’re paying a reasonable amount per month. You need to make sure that you’re paying your bills in the most cost-effective way possible.

Be smart when it comes to debt.

Not all debt is bad. In fact, borrowing money can be good for your financial situation. If you can pay back loans on time then you’ll improve your credit rating, and this will make you more reliable in the eye of potential lenders. In turn, this will make it easier for you to take out loans for big purchases (e.g. houses, cars, etc). And it might help with the size of the loan or the interest rate you face. But borrowing money is still something you should do cautiously.

Only ever borrow what you can afford to pay back, for starters. You might not be able to afford the down deposit on a house, for example, but you have to make sure that you’ll be able to afford the monthly repayments on that house before you take out a loan. Additionally, you need to make sure that you never try to compensate for a costly debt repayment by borrowing more money. That’s how you end up in the debt spiral. If you want to achieve financial stability then you need to make sure you only take out loans you can afford. That’s the crucial thing to remember.

Are You Struggling To Achieve Financial Stability?

Start investing properly.

There are many different ways to invest your money, but you should find one that works for you. Financial stability comes with wealth, and you can increase your wealth by searching for income streams outside of your main salary. You might want to invest in assets that will increase in value over time, for example. It’s all about playing the long game. Maybe you’ll try your hand at the stocks market. You could even invest in Bitcoin. But the property market is an area that attracts many first-time investors. It’s an asset that’s always valuable, even if prices fluctuate constantly. You could make a sizeable ROI by buying and selling houses. Or you could even buy to lease if you want to pull in a regular income on a monthly basis.

There are plenty of ways to get stuck into investing, but the point is that you need to be doing more than sitting on your money. If you want to achieve financial stability then you need to think about the future. For many people, even a sizeable salary isn’t enough to ensure that they have financial savings for their retirement years, their children’s university funds, and all the other big costs they face in life. Starting to invest will ensure that your wealth can grow month after month, regardless of the income you earn from your full-time job.

Are You Struggling To Achieve Financial Stability?

Prepare some savings.

Finally, financial stability depends on savings. You need security for the future. For starters, you need a rainy day fund. Not everything in life can be predicted. You need to be financially prepared for the unexpected. Cars can break down, and natural disasters can damage houses. Not every cost can be included in your monthly budget because you might not be able to foresee everything. But what you can do is prepare an emergency fund so that you’re ready for the unexpected. Set aside a little bit of money on a monthly basis until you’ve got a sizeable fund built up ready for a costly event.

You also need to prepare some savings for something you can predict: your retirement. We’ve touched on this topic throughout the article, but you really need to start thinking about things in the long-term. You need to continuously build up your savings if you want to make sure you’ve got enough for your later years in life. Start saving now, and you’ll be thankful for it in the future.

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Finance

The Ultimate Home Saving Cheat Sheet

The Ultimate Home Saving Cheat Sheet

Money saving tips ideas

The idea of being able to afford your own home during your twenties might seem like a million miles away for many of us, and it is something which can be difficult to think about saving for. Saving for a house  is a nightmare and it can be hard to balance paying for our car, phone and rent as well as having money left to save up. However, it can be done if you follow these simple tips.

Increase your credit score

When you come to apply for a mortgage, the lender will look at your credit history and they will want to see if you have a good enough track record to be trusted with the loan. It means that you need to spend time finding out how to increase credit score quickly to make sure you are accepted for your mortgage immediately. If you have any outstanding debts you need to pay these off before applying.

Stop partying

There are a lot of people in their twenties who are reluctant to save for a house because they want to have a fun life. However, if you want to start making your future you need to balance things out. If you go out every weekend with your friends, you can instead think about going out every two weeks or once a month instead. Reduce the money you spend on alcohol and instead put this money into a savings account to go towards your home.

Have a stay-cation

Rather than spending all of your money on a holiday abroad this year, book a last-minute cottage in the countryside and enjoy a week away from work but spending less money than you would abroad. You will notice that you can enjoy your time without worrying about cash, and any extra money you would have spent abroad can go in the savings fund!

eBay it

If you have clutter and random things in your home, the best thing you can do with it is put it up for sale on eBay for some cash. There’s no point simply throwing things away if you can get some money for it instead! Take some time this weekend to clear out your Home and think about what things you could sell on. Remember, you can also sell your old clothes so don’t forget to clear out your closet too!

Budget for food

Food shopping can be a huge cost for us to deal with each day and this can often be the biggest cost we have throughout the year. If you spend far too much on food, you might want to start thinking about cheaper meals and meals which have less ingredients in them. You can use a book like 5 Ingredient Meals by Jamie Oliver or look online and you should find some budget friendly options to try for your family. You can save any money leftover from your food shop and this will soon accumulate to help you buy a house.

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Finance, Lifestyle

Saving for summer

Saving for summer

Saving for summer

Being a parent and trying to save money can sometimes prove very difficult. Even more so for summer activities and a family summer holiday. I don’t know about you but it often feels as if money evaporates before our eyes. As the saying goes “every little helps”. A few small changes to spending habits can help a great deal and make quite a difference to the savings pot.

Saving doesn’t have to be boring, you can still have fun and save at the same time.

Here are a few saving ideas that may help you save a few pennies for summer:

  • Are you one for going off of lunch dates with friends? Try and cut out on the expensive coffee shops or pub lunches, try and meet for a picnic or even play host and take turns to lunch at each others house. That way you could save a few pounds but your still meeting and having fun.
  • Do you meal plan? Meal planning we find also helps watch the pennies. If meals are planned out in advance for the week it helps with budgeting the funds, it helps to cut out on the impulse buying and also food waste. I am guilty of always impulse buying and buying the “I may need this” item. I am always buying food products and forgetting that they are there and before I know it the food has gone out-of-date. Having a list to stick to and a budget in mind has helped massively. I now try and do online shopping to save the risk of temptation.
  • Voucher codes are always worth looking out for to help keep the costs down. A quick look online could help reduce your bill.
  • Having a sort out of unused items could bring in a few pounds to your saving pot. I think we are all guilty of having a junk area and unused things shoved to the back of the cupboard.  It may be worth having a sort out and advertising the products for sale, someone could grab a bargain and you make a few pounds.
  • Have a closer look at your usage to see what you truly need/use. We recently reduced our TV and internet package as half the channels we didn’t even watch. We are also going more energy-efficient around the home. In the long run the savings here will help keep costs down.
  • Comparison sites is always worth a browse. We never just auto-renew our insurances/contracts we always take a look at the end of every contract. This helps to keep the bills down each month.
  • Walking where possible saves us money and keeps us fit. Being a two car family due to both working and needing a car this means double the car bill. Where possible we leave the car at home and walk. This saves on wear-and-tear on the car, petrol and also parking fees.
  • Grow your own is something we done last year and really enjoyed. Have you ever tried growing your own fruit and veg? this saved us money last year and we hope to do it again this year. Home grown tastes so much better.
  • Try out cheaper brands in store, you never know you may be surprised and even like the cheaper brand. If you can change just a few items to a cheaper brand that could save you a few pounds to add to your savings pot.

These are just a few ideas that may help with saving a few pounds to put towards something for the summer. We are off on a few family holidays over the next few weeks, making a few changes will save on having to apply for a loan. Some may say short term loans can be a good solution but we would rather avoid loans as much as possible.

Do you have any good money-saving ideas?

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Finance

Money under the mattress: finding funds from your home

Money under the mattress: finding funds from your home

Money under the mattress: finding funds from your home

In the modern world, most people have less than perfect finances. With the expense of living, jobs paying less than they used to, and housing being so pricey, it can be hard for people to get enough out of their salary. In this case, life is a challenge and will be very hard for you to manage. But, it doesn’t have to be this way. Instead, using your home, you can find ways to give yourself a good windfall, taking away some of the financial strain you feel. To help you out with this, this post will be going through some of the best ways to make money out of your home.

  • Giving Away A Slice

As the kids start to move out and space starts to open up in your home, the possibility of hosting a lodger becomes a reality. Of course, you won’t want this with young kids, so, for some, it might not work. Without a young child, though, having a young professional live in your home won’t impact your life that much at all. In most cases, lodgers will pay good rent for the place you give them, especially if you’re willing to provide food to them.

For people with young kids, the issues with hosting a lodger will probably be clear. Of course, though, this doesn’t mean that you can’t downsize. By moving to a smaller property, you can rent your current home to someone else. While they live there, the rent you pay will be covered by the rent you receive, leaving a little bit for you. This sort of action has to be taken very carefully, as it can be easy to lose if you’re not careful.

A lot of people will need a little bit of help to carry out action like this. Thankfully, in most cases, an estate agent is all you should need to be able to get started with something like this. They will be able to handle all of the paperwork while making the transaction nice and simple.

  • Using It As Collateral

In some cases, it can be better to keep the space you have and give away some of the equity from your home, instead. One of the best ways to do this is through home owner loans. This sort of option uses your house as a guarantee for the loan, making it easier for the banks to trust you. Along with this, this sort of loan is very easy to apply for, as you don’t have to go through the same vetting as a regular applicant.

Of course, though, in some cases, you will need a lot of money to be able to get on your feet. In this position, it can be worth sacrificing a large part of your home. A remortgage can achieve this for you, as long as you’re not too old to pay back what you owe before you leave work. A lot of people find this method extremely helpful, as it can be done very soon after taking the initial mortgage.

Making a decision like the ones above is never something which can be taken lightly. So, in most cases, it’s a good idea to get some help before you start. Your bank will be a good place to begin, as they will be able to provide you advice for free. For some, though, looking for professional help could be a better way to get the support you need.

  • A Clean Out

When bills are stretching the bank and you’re struggling to make ends meet, even a small boost could be enough to help you out. Though you may be attached to them, the unused items around your home could be plenty to fill your gap. You can start by looking for things of high-value which don’t get used very often. For example, an old music player or other electronic gadget. Then, you can start to look for some ways to sell it.

eBay and other auction websites can be the best to help you if you want to sell quite a few items, as they make it very easy to manage. Alongside this, though, you could also use a social media marketplace, like Facebook’s local sales tools. Using options like this will expand your reach and be much more effective than selling to customers in the flesh.

Hopefully, this post will give you a good idea of what can be done when you’re trying to find new ways to make money from your home. When you have a resource like this, you have a lot of potential behind you. To learn how to use it, you just have to do some research.

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Finance

Buying Our First House

Buying Our First House

Buying Our First House

We have been married now for sixteen years come August, we have three beautiful teenage boys and have always been a working family but the timing for buying our first house has never been right.

We have lived in our housing association three bedroom house since 2003, we exchanged to move here from our two bedroom council flat – we was very lucky.

Since living here we have done so much to the house to improve it and make it more homely, we have put in a new fitted kitchen and bathroom, added a conservatory and even paved both gardens to make it more pet friendly for Buddy our German Shepherd dog.

The timing hasn’t really been right for buying our first house until now – the house is now comfortable to how we want it and now feels like home – a home that we really want to buy. This is the house all three boys have grown up in, these walls hold so many happy memories.

We did look into trying to buy our house a few years ago but due to the (right to buy) law at the time it came back as a big fat NO!

Now due to recent law changes some people are now being given to right to buy their property if they wish so we recently looked into buying our house again and was totally shocked when they said YES, yes we will be happy to send you out the application pack needed.

Things are now starting to look up for us, we still have a long way to go but we are now a step closer than we was last year and we are keeping positive. We now have an application pack being sent out to us and all the relevant paperwork out to apply to be homeowners……Eeek exciting times!

Looking back to the very first time that we phoned to ask if we had the right to buy our property, in a way we are glad they said no because Ian was then working for a family run business and the boss never paid regular, we went from week to week not knowing when the next payday was or even worst still we never knew how much for. This wouldn’t look good on a mortgage application now would it?

It was a financial struggle and yes bills mounted up but he kept the job because it was a job and they are hard to find nowadays aren’t they?

Things are now different, I have been in a secured job now for a good few years and Ian has since changed jobs, he is now working for a very stable company that has been going for years. This company pays Ian on a set date each month without fail, now this has got to look much better for when applying for a mortgage hasn’t it?

With us both being in a steady job that we’ve been in for a few years now, bills have always been paid on time, we don’t have any rent arrears and we have means to show we can afford a mortgage and have means to pay on time each month.

So looking back – no the timing would have been completely wrong for us to apply but we have worked hard to get to where we are now the main thing we done was financially planned to get to where we are now, that is to be stable enough to be able to apply comfortably for buying our first house.

Your credit report holds all the cards as to whether you will be allowed the credit needed, so having a good credit rating is very important as it is used by lenders to determine how much of a risk you are to loan too. Do you check your credit score? we have been keeping a close eye on ours over the past few years. Credit score checks are used by most lenders, this can be for loans, mortgages, car finance, credit cards and so on.

Ways you can financially help yourself.

Financially plan if you wish to buy something.

Try and avoid getting into bad unessersary debt if possible.

Keep on top of all your bills. Paying on time shows you’re a good trustworthy person to lend to.

Keep an eye on your credit report and try to fix any problems that may show up.

Register on the electoral roll.

Try your best to avoid getting loans.

Keep a check on your outgoing’s, it is so easy to overspend.

Don’t abuse any credit that is available to you.

Are you looking to renew your car? take a look at Stoneacre Car Finance they offer great options ranging from interest free to low payments, also a no deposit car finance offer.

Buying our first home

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Finance, Savings

Making Christmas Easier

Making christmas easier

Saving To Make Christmas Easier

Christmas for all of us is an expensive time of year, we dread it but look forward to it all at the same time. We dread it for the stress it causes, worrying about the expense and what to buy people and hope the gifts are right for that person. We also look forward to Christmas for many of reasons. This year we plan on making Christmas easier.

Each year we keep saying that we will budget better for Christmas to help minimise the stress a little but have never gotten round to doing so.

This year it is one of our New Years resolutions, budgeting for things will be in our top MUST DO things this year. We have big things hopefully happening this year that we hope to share with you all very soon.

We will be making Christmas easier by sticking to this savings plan.

   Christmas saving plan

For every week of the year we will add £1 in a pot.

Week one we will add £1.

Week two we will put in £2.

Week three we will add £3 and so on. Each week will increase by £1.

If Our Maths Is Right Then:

If  we have done our maths right, by Friday 9th December we will hopefully have £1,275 that is with us starting today (01/01/2016) we thought today would be a good day as any to start. Finishing on the 09/12/16 would give us plenty of time to get gifts for everyone.

We chatted over Christmas while we was home and altogether about trying Christmas in a different way this year and came up with this payment scheme and action plan. So instead of putting the money on the gifts and online ordering the money owed to the pot that week will go into the pot and we will do the gift shopping together in one go. We have never done Christmas shopping like this at all but we are keen to give it a try.

We are trying out the new Christmas savings and shopping idea because we are parents to teenagers who like to keep changing their gift list at last-minute and people suddenly treating themselves to gifts we had already bought and wrapped up for them, so with this new idea we have in mind this shouldn’t be a problem this year. We will keep an eye out on the sales and will also have a rough idea on what to get for people but will not purchase until late December to save from any last-minute changes.

Do you normally put money away throughout the year for Christmas?

Do you online shop or do you like to go to the shops direct?

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family, Finance, Savings

Top Tips For Saving Money As A Family

Top Tips For Saving Money As A Family

Family Money Saving

When your family grows to include little ones, the amount of disposable income you and your partner will have will seriously dwindle. Kids take up so much of your money, and without even realising it, sometimes! From school trips and uniforms to days out to keep them occupied, it all adds up and, if you’re not careful, your finances could be hugely affected.
There are plenty of ways in which you can save money as a family, though. If you cut costs in certain areas, you will have more cash to spare at the end of the month. Here are a few ways to start saving:

Affordable Uniforms

Head over to the George school uniform shop to kit your kids out with all of their back to school essentials. Avoid buying from specialist uniform suppliers, because you’ll end up paying a premium for gear with school emblems emblazoned on them. Most schools are happy for pupils to wear cheaper items, as long as they’re the same colour as their uniform requirements.
Shop wisely, and keep an eye out for any offers and discounts, and your money will go much, much further.

Meal Plans

With a little forward planning, you can save a bundle on your weekly shop at the supermarket. Make a list before you go to the shops so that you know exactly what you need, and don’t deviate from it – not even a teeny bit!
Sit down and create a meal plan for the week so that you know what ingredients you need to provide meals for all the family. This way, you won’t waste anything and you won’t spend on things that you don’t need.

Walk

It’s far too easy to just jump in the car and ferry the kids around to the various places they need to be. Whether it’s the school run, a trip to the local soft play or a visit to their friend’s house, if it’s nice weather, walk instead! You’ll save a bundle on petrol and car maintenance fees, and you’ll feel better and healthier, too!

Free Activities

Spending time as a family doesn’t have to cost a fortune. When the weekends arrive, you can visit attractions that don’t charge high entrance fees. Museums, country parks, forest walks – the list of free things to do is huge, and will mean you can keep your cash in your pocket for a bit longer!

Save Energy

This is one that every family member can contribute to. By being a little more conscientious when using electricity and gas, you can save a fortune on your energy bills. Turn the thermostat down by a degree or two, especially during the summer months, and turn off lights and appliances when not in use.
Saving money as a family can easily be done if you know how. The smallest savings soon add up and, before you know it, you’ll have more disposable income to play with. Holiday fund, perhaps?

*Collaborative post*
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