Home Business Insights & Advice Want to tidy-up your finances? Here are four finance decluttering tips

Want to tidy-up your finances? Here are four finance decluttering tips

by John Saunders
8th Jan 21 3:53 pm

Putting off decluttering your finances until the New Year might seem like a good idea, but in reality, the only time to start tidying-up is Right Now! Showing some resolve and getting started at it immediately will lead to a less stressful, happier life.

If that sounds appealing, here is a four-step guide from Portafina that can help you start decluttering your finances.

1. Separate your finances

Having separate bank accounts for the different aspects of your finances will help you gain more clarity about your financial position. Just as you might compartmentalise physical receipts and invoices in a filing cabinet, you can do the same with your mobile banking application. 

With a couple of taps, you can create new accounts for direct debits, personal spending, savings, and so on. This method is a great way to keep track of what you’re spending.

2. Regularly review your direct debits and bills

It is quick and easy to review your bills, direct debits, and standing orders with a mobile banking application. Spending just five or ten minutes studying your income and outgoings each month is invaluable. It may be surprising to discover where your money is going and how much you are spending on certain things. 

Broadband, mobile phone, digital subscriptions, and other regular monthly costs may have grown considerably since you started the subscription. Now is the time to search for cheaper alternatives and save yourself some money each month. Similarly, when you receive renewal letters for insurance, check whether the premium has increased. Even if it hasn’t, you can search for cheaper alternatives using an online comparison site.

3. Get rid of your debt

Being clear of debt is an incredible feeling, and you can achieve it. Making simple lifestyle changes and sacrificing some small luxuries can get you on the road to debt-free living.

If you have a significant amount of debt, getting started on reducing it can be a daunting task. However, you can kick-off with a hit-list of debts to target. You might feel inclined to start with your most considerable debt, but this is not the case. You should be looking to reduce your debts with the largest interest rates as soon as possible. Getting rid of these first will leave you with more money each month to reduce the others.

If your debts have spiralled out of control, or you feel overwhelmed or stressed by the amount of debt you have, consider speaking with a debt counsellor. They can provide support to help you get through the challenges of debt.

4. Look after your future self

Getting your finances decluttered provides you with a feeling of satisfaction here and now. However, you also need to think about your future self. How much will you need in ten, twenty, or fifty years? The sooner you start to plan and save for your future, the more you will be able to accumulate for your retirement or whenever you’ll need it most.

Where to start?

The good news is, if you are over twenty-two or over, employed, and earn over £10,000 per annum, you will be enrolled in a workplace pension scheme. As of April 2019, 8% of your salary goes into your workplace pension pot. This amount is made up of 5% from your salary, topped-up by 3% from your employer. If you don’t already have any retirement savings, this is excellent news. Opting out of a workplace pension can cost you thousands of pounds.

As for the State Pension, the age you can receive this is currently in the mid-sixties, but this is likely to increase. If the state pension is your only source of retirement income, you should consider whether this will be sufficient to sustain you throughout your retirement years.

Conclusion

Decluttering your finances is incredibly satisfying and potentially financially rewarding. Hopeful, these four steps will put you on track towards a tidier, less cluttered financial position.

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