The trouble with New Year resolutions is that they are so hard to keep.

But New Year is a time of fresh starts, so here’s how to achieve more with your money in 2018.

They say there are two ways to get richer – increase your income or cut your expenses. If you had splurged over Christmas and not behaved like a Grinch, then the New Year will bring its own money headaches.

To make sure that you start 2018 on the right foot, here are six tips on what you should do about your money so that you are not in the red over the next 12 months.

1. Reduce your debt.

Start with your credit card debt since it will likely have the highest interest rate. While you are paring down your debt, make sure that you don’t add new debt on your card. Consider a personal loan instead.

2. Make extra mortgage payments

A good way to start the New Year is to make extra payment towards your mortgage. If you are able to make an extra payment once every two months, you will be reducing not only the time it will take you to pay off your debt but also the amount of interest you are paying to the bank.

3. Start a rainy day fund

Setting up an emergency fund is always a good move for unexpected payments like car repairs. You might want to park more than $500 in a higher interest account at the bank, as nowadays, $500 will not get you very far. Build up your emergency fund to at least two months of your average income, it will always see you in good stead.

4. Invest in your superannuation

It is never too early to plan for your retirement. Make additional contributions to your superannuation. Building up wealth is a long term game. It will lead you on the path of a financially secure retirement.

5. Cut your spending

Wherever possible, you should cut back on your expenditure and spend less on restaurants, takeaways and online shopping. Reconsider whether you really need another pair of new shoes or your gym membership card. It’s far cheaper and healthier to exercise in the park where there’s fresh air.  

6. Reassess your insurance

When your car, home or contents insurances come up for renewal, compare them with other products before you hand over more money to your existing insurer. Compare the price and features of products offered by other insurers to make sure you are getting the best value. You may well get an insurance which offers better coverage but at a lower premium.

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