The challenges that prevent this usually fall into two baskets: saving and paying off debt.
Saving is serious stuff. It’s the step that allows for investing in the future and building our financial security. A study just came out from ME Bank that found less than half of us (46 per cent) manage to save money on a regular basis and 12 per cent of us dip into personal savings just to make ends meet.
Rest assured, saving, investing and still having money left over for life’s comforts can still be achieved.
Here are some of my savings/invest/spending balance suggestions which has worked well for me and my clients as well as some of my best saving for investment tips.
1) Take control of your cash
The starting point to freeing up cash is to know where it’s going, so get honest and track your spending. This can be a real eye opener but is crucial to be able to free up cash for saving and investing.
2) Get serious about saving
Growing savings requires commitment. Not sometimes. Not when unexpected money comes in but week in week out it needs to become a habit. It doesn’t take a lot to get started to see regular savings become a nest egg to be able to invest with.
3) Get clear on how to reach your financial goals sooner
I cover in my events how clarifying your financial goals will get you where you want to go faster. While there are no overnight get-rich-quick guarantees, there are many options to consider to accelerate your savings and achieve your goals sooner, such as reviewing your budget and spending as per point 1), borrowing and joint ventures are a few to evaluate what is right for you.
4) Immediate wants verssu long-term wants
Learn to prioritise and before you spend, think long term. The key is don’t dip into your long-term savings to pay for short-term luxuries. With a little planning you can have both and maintain a healthy sense of balance without too many feelings of “going without”.
5) Change your perception
When saving and focusing on “going without” it seems like your friends or work colleagues are buying the fancy car, booking the expensive holiday and living it up. Just because they appear more affluent doesn’t mean that they are – they could be living off plastic with no savings for all you know! Focus on your own goals and savings.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ryan Crawford has been involved in the property investment industry for over 10 years, making the transition from investor to real estate professional. His agency, Crawford Property Group (CPG), was recently named the fastest growing real estate company in Australia by BRW’s Fast Starters Awards. CPG was also a finalist for Independent of the Year at the inaugural 2013 Australian Real Estate Awards. Social media has been a key element of CPG's business development strategy since the group launched in 2008. CPG's Facebook page recently hit 30,000 likes and has become one of its primary sources of new business.