Get Rainy Day Ready in 2018

12 January 2018

Your home loan repayment is usually one of your biggest monthly outgoings, and together with your other regular commitments, your expenses can really add up. So not being able to pay your expenses can be a scary thought. Sometimes things just go wrong and are out of your control - your toilet blocks and the cost of a plumber can be expensive, or your car breaks down and it needs significant repairs. Or worse, what if you lost your job or were injured? Even planning a family can mean added financial stress. With a little forward planning, you may be able to minimise or avoid the financial stress that can be caused by these ‘life events’. As we head into the first month of 2018, here are our tips on how you can get off to a flying start to be prepared for that rainy day.

Give yourself an emergency buffer

It’s a good idea to give yourself enough of a financial buffer to be able to meet all your expenses for a few months. Make this your first goal – make some extra repayments to get ahead on all your loans.  This could mean rounding up your repayments to the nearest $100 or paying fortnightly instead of monthly. Work out your weekly budget and set your savings goal to ensure you have enough in savings to get you by for a few months. This is a good emergency plan, and one we hope you’ll never need. If you need to get your savings in to gear, consider a high interest online savings account like Easy Street’s.

Minimise your commitments
Having it all now is something that appeals to most of us, and finance is often used to get it. Put simply, the less commitments you have, the more likely you’ll be able to see out a rainy period. Aim to minimise your debts, even if this takes changing some pretty hard habits. This could mean not financing 100% of a purchase such as a car and putting some savings towards it instead; waiting until you’ve paid out one debt before getting in to another; and if your credit card is maxed out, focus on paying it down and changing your habits for a while instead of applying for another one.

Use your loan features
Find out if your home loan and other loans offer a repayment holiday. With some lenders, if you are in advance on your loan you may be able to take a break from making repayments for a period of time, allowing you the time that you need to get things in order.  This gives you a good reason to get ahead on your home loan and gives you assurance that you can take a break if you need it.

You can either get ahead on your home loan by making extra repayments or using an offset account. When you park your money in an offset account, interest is calculated on your home loan’s outstanding balance, less the balance in your offset account. This saves you interest on your loan, plus you can still access your savings whenever you need it.

You can also consider fixing your interest rate to give you certainty that your repayments will remain the same for a period of time, making budgeting much easier. All home loans from Easy Street offer a 100% offset account and free redraw. Find out more here.

Check your insurance
Make sure you have the appropriate level of cover for your car, home and health to be available to you if something does go wrong. Sure, ongoing insurance costs can add up, but at least you’ll have the peace of mind that you’ll be covered when you need it.

See if Easy Street can help you
We believe that managing your money should be easy. At Easy Street, you’ll find all the savings and loan products you need to put our tips in to action. Visit www.easystreet.com.au to find out more.


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