COVID-19 has put our productivity and our sanity to the test.
Between adjusting to a completely new routine, taking endless Zoom calls, home-schooling kids (and making a seamlessly endless amount of snacks for them) – then having to juggle work and personal life on top of it, it’s no wonder many of us are experiencing decision fatigue.
It’s just hard to find the headspace and the motivation to get things done these days, right!
Unfortunately, most of us can’t just kick back and binge watch Netflix and wait until things just ‘blow over’. We all have commitments to meet and bills to pay.
There is no cheat sheet to life, but there is a cheat sheet for simplifying and getting started on some of the bigger projects you’ve put in the ‘too hard basket’.
Here is our cheat sheet to help you get started on some of those tasks and finally get some of those pesky jobs you’ve been putting off, done — and maybe even help you save a few bucks in the process.
Check your loanScore
If we asked you how long it took you to fill out your home loan or refinancing application, chances are, you’ll give an exasperated “12 hours” as a response – even when the reality was more like two hours, let’s be honest.
Well, what if there was a tool you could use to check whether it’s even worth taking action on your home loan? A tool that takes 2 minutes, not 2 hours?
There is – it’s called loanScore
loanScore is a free check-up for your home loan. It helps you understand whether your home loan is in good shape or not. It’s a great place to start and you can do it all online – no paperwork, no speaking to banks or brokers.
All you need is a few bits of info and you can instantly see if there is a better rate available and how much you could be saving, so you can decide if and when you want to take action.
Examine your budget
Our friend Olivia White from House of White is a budgeting goddess. Not only has she tackled a renovation and purchase of a new home in the last year, she’s made it look so easy. And now we know why.
Olivia’s has created her own approach to setting a budget which is a simple and most importantly a quick way to get on top of what you’re spending. A quick print off of your bank statements, a highlighter and her step-by-step guide will have you ticking this off in no time.
She has even created downloadable spreadsheets so you’re not having to fiddle around creating your own (genius), plus they are so beautifully designed, it makes doing a budget pleasurable.
Consolidate your super
If you’ve ever changed your job, your home address or even changed your name lately you may have lost track of some of your super. Finding your lost super and consolidating it can help you save on fees and makes it easier to manage.
Your lost super may be held by your super fund or by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). It’s easy to find your lost super online through the ATO:
- Go to my.gov.au.
- Log in or create an account.
- Link your myGov account to the ATO.
- Select ‘Super’.
This will allow you to:
- see details of all your super accounts, including any you’ve lost or forgotten about
- find any ATO-held super — this is held on your behalf when your super fund, your employer or the government can’t find an account to deposit your super into
- consolidate your super into a single fund
If you’ve recently opened a new super account, it may take up to six months to appear on myGov. You can also find lost super using a paper form. See searching for lost super on the ATO website.
Track your expenses
Imagine you could have your budgeting tool that fits right in your pocket – and no, it’s not your phone calculator. There are some really amazing financial aggregating apps such as MoneyBrilliant or PocketBook that will consolidate all your financial accounts so you can get an easy snapshot of where your money is going, how your investments are doing and other trends like your net worth.
- Budgeting tool that’s automatically based on your previous spending
- Transaction categorisation, so you know exactly where your money is going
- Automated record of your possible occupation-specific tax deductions
- Create Money Priorities to personalise what’s financially important for you
- Automatically categorises the majority of your transactions.
- Integrates your bank accounts, credit cards and loans
- Comprehensive FAQ for beginners
- Encrypts all of your information for security.
All this information in one place will help you have a clear picture and make smarter choices and even help you reach your financial goals – whatever they are.
We know there are probably other tasks you have on your to-do-list, but why not start chipping away at the long list, today.
These few things could go a long way to helping you get on top of your finances, and might even save some money in the long run.