17 Oct 2018

Getting Your House in Order

A house is often the most valuable and expensive asset that you will acquire during a lifetime. Having your documentation in order is vital when it comes to maintaining your finances or selling it. Reflect back on your financial activity during the last year and decide whether you should make any changes to better meet your financial goals. Having financial security is worth peace of mind. Here are some ways to put your house in order.

Set financial goals

Review your current financial situation and make a plan for the coming year. List all your assets, for example, your home, land, car, investment etc. and give them a realistic valuation. Then list all your debts like your mortgage, car loan, credit cards, etc. Write down the steps that you will need to take in order to meet your financial goals and set yourself a deadline. After reaching your financial goals review your progress annually. This involves comparing your current income, current debts, savings and investments with the previous year. If your finances improve then make a stronger financial commitment for the coming year.

Bills and receipts

Late fees or bills may incur an additional charge or fine and can adversely affect your credit score. Set up an automatic bill paying process to avoid any late payments. In the same way, check your utility and credit card bills that the information is accurate and keep a copy of your statement.

Pay down debt

Save year end mortgage statements, credit card statements and auto financing statements to track your progress. These documents will show you what debt has been paid down and the amounts still outstanding. Pay high-interest debts as quickly as possible and avoid taking on further debt going forward.

Track spending

Track your actual spending so you can compare and review it to your budgeted amounts on a monthly basis. If you are spending more in any category than the budgeted amount, its time to make immediate changes.

Bank and investment account statements

Receive year-end statements for all your banks and investment accounts and review them to see how your accounts have been performing. These statements will typically show how much you have earned since the account was established. Keep your current statements and review them on a regular basis. Similarly, look to sell investments held for at least 1 year if you want to take advantage of the 50% capital gains tax discount.

Annual insurance review

Review your insurance policies yearly with your insurance agent. Understand exactly what is covered and what isn’t. Having an insurance analysis determines how much your surviving spouse and children would need if something unforeseen were to happen. Have a qualified adviser and find a reputable insurance agent who will provide the necessary information about insurance policies and claim forms.

Properly store your documents

Nowadays theft has become a big problem. Hackers are able to access personal and financial history and then use it to create fake identities that can ruin your credit or at worst, drain your bank accounts. What happens if there’s a fire or other unexpected  disasters?  Consider buying a strong safe locker for your home, so you can keep important documents safe and dispose of financial data properly.

Create an estate plan

Our lives change constantly and it is important to create an estate plan. Set aside time to discuss these issues with your significant other and consider your family’s financial well-being. Discuss your wishes and desires with people or family members who you designate to be your executors of your will, power of attorney, etc. These documents need to be updated from time to time and especially when there are substantial changes. Getting your house in order is essential and the above mentioned points need to be taken into consideration. For more information contact Fast Home Repay Loan at 1300 707 955 or email at info@fastrepayhomeloan.com.au/backup, we look forward to helping you achieve your financial goals.

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