I never cease to be amazed by the ongoing popularity of “reality” television, the world of “celebrity” magazine coverage, the banal nature of some forms of social media communication and the like.
It seems to me that some people find the world of mindless escapism offered by these forms of communication as preferable to dealing with the realities of their own lives.
This raises the question - Why do we find it preferable to waste time and energy consuming these manufactured forms of drama?
Think of it like this;
Clearly I could provide an endless list of examples, but when viewed through the window I have outlined above I think most of us can see the absurd nature of the distractions we often allow into our own world.
Of course we all need a little light relief in our lives, and I’m not for a moment suggesting otherwise, however I think the key here is to have an appropriate sense of perspective as to what are the real things that are important in our lives.
I know, because I have seen it so frequently over 30+ years, what real value, real happiness and real financial peace of mind is provided by sound household financial management.
I have established Empower Money Management to share my expertise with clients who struggle to understand the nuances of sound financial management. I provide fee-for-service budgeting assistance, coaching and education around the efficient and effective usage of your own money.
To learn more or to join the growing list of clients who have benefitted from my experience contact me today.
M. 0407 439 827
Whether it is a business that sells stock, or whether it is a business that sells or provides a service all businesses generate their revenue through the provision of their particular products and/or services. That’s how a business operates in a capitalist economy.
Including myself, I wonder how many businesses are in the habit of regularly checking in with their clients or prospective clients as to how well they are actually meeting their needs.
To explain further - I have a belief that there is a definite need in the financial services marketplace for a service such as mine. My service is not product based. Broadly speaking, I offer fee-for-service budgeting assistance, finance coaching and education in the more efficient and effective usage of your existing financial products and affairs.
Since commencing my business in late 2016 I have helped many people as I have outlined above. However, through actively listening to the concerns of my clients I have developed a much broader scope to my business than I initially imagined. For example I have helped small business clients in areas as diverse as researching and writing new business plans and marketing plans; employers have engaged me to provide financial review services for their employees; and I have also diversified into areas like providing information sessions on financial literacy to secondary school students.
As a small business I also have the advantage of being instantly contactable. The immediate nature of contemporary forms of communication means today’s consumers want more or less instant responses to their needs. Unfortunately, the massive size of most financial organisations often counts against them with regard to their capacity to actively and promptly listen to their client’s needs, or for that matter for you to even know who to contact at the bank in the first place.
Most financial institutions also operate in a very sales focused environment, which is often counter- productive to the actual need of their clients. I would be interested to know how many people have come away from a meeting with their banker with another product that they had no idea they “needed”.
Through staying small and really listening to what my clients are telling me I can respond quickly to your needs. Furthermore, if our meeting leads to a realisation that your needs are outside the scope of the services I can provide I have an extensive network of expert finance industry contacts who can also assist.
To help me to maximise the relevance of the services I provide I would love to hear from the people who follow my Facebook and LinkedIn posts. Tell me what your financial needs and concerns are, and together we can proactively take the first steps to assisting you.
M.0407 439 827
I read an article a couple of days ago that pointed out it was now only 20 weeks until Christmas. For most of us Christmas means time with family and friends, gift buying and summer holidays – always an enjoyable time of year.
Whilst an enjoyable time of year, that then got me thinking about the Achilles heel for most people at that time.
How do we go about paying for the expense of Christmas gifts and summer holidays?
Unfortunately I’ve seen all too often during my 32 years in the finance industry clients who dig themselves into a big financial hole through mismanaging their money, and it often starts from the lead up to Christmas and then the following summer holiday.
If you don’t plan ahead, a lot of the expenses that begin to mount up in the lead up to Christmas can soon snowball into a debt servicing load that can become increasingly difficult and expensive to manage.
Think of it this way – I’ll list below a relatively stereotypical hypothetical example of the type and amount of expenses families experience during the Christmas/New Year period.
Obviously this is not an exhaustive list, it’s simply meant as a typical example. However, what it does portray is how quickly costs can mount, and if no defined plan is in place the problem of how those costs are managed then occurs.
Again stereotypically, for most people who haven’t made a plan they will choose to fund these expenses via their credit card. The negative effect of managing this way is further magnified if there is already a month to month balance being carried on the credit card account.
For the sake of my example let’s imagine we have a client who already carries a month to month outstanding balance of $5000 on their credit card. Following the Christmas/summer holiday/back to school period the $5000 outstanding on the credit card has become $12000.
$12000 that depending on what type of credit card you have you may be paying interest at an annual rate around 20% - clearly not a sound or cost effective financing strategy.
Thankfully, the alternative to the unfortunately all too usual AND stressful scenario outlined above is simple.
HAVE A PLAN.
BE YOUR OWN BANK – In the example listed above with the $7000 in expenses across the Christmas/summer holiday/back to school period the $7000 can be broken down into a weekly amount of $134.62 across the entire year.
By being prepared to formulate a manageable budget that provides the discipline to save the necessary $134.62 each week during the year you have funded the expense of that time of year out of your own pocket.
Furthermore, this means that the $7000 expense has cost you $7000. In this specific example you have effectively become your own bank.
If you had borrowed the money the end cost is impossible to determine because it would depend on both what length of time it took you to repay it, and also what interest rate you were being charged.
Most importantly, by NOT borrowing the money you don’t have those further debt servicing costs. Interest costs (and anxiety) haven’t been added on.
To learn more about the value of having an effective budget, and also to learn about the value in effectively managing your existing loans and bank accounts contact Leigh at Empower Money Management.
0407 439 827