Diet, exercise, rest and rejuvenation all come to mind when we think about wellbeing. But while looking after your physical health is a great first step towards a happy and healthy life, it’s important to look after your financial wellbeing too.
We’ve put together some handy tips to reduce any financial stress in your life, and help give you the savings you need to live the type of life you want.
Ditch your debt
Credit cards, hire purchases and personal loans all seem like a good idea at the time (and they can be), but the downside is they usually come with higher interest rates and fees, leaving you with higher repayments. Focus on getting rid of this type of short-term debt as a priority.Help to manage your debt
Create a budget
This might seem like an obvious tip, but many people either don’t have a budget or don’t follow the one they do. Allocating a monthly budget to cover your planned expenses makes it easy to track your spending and see where you may be able to save (or spend!) a little extra while staying within your means.Use our budget calculator
Make extra super contributions
Your super will effectively become your retirement paycheque, which you’ll need to help fund everything from your weekly groceries to treats like entertainment and travel. Adding a bit extra to your super each month now, while you’re still working, can make a big difference to the type of lifestyle you enjoy in retirement.Try our calculator
Check your insurance cover
Insurance can provide you with a replacement income if you’re no longer able to work. While hopefully you never need to use it, knowing it’s there if you do can help reduce stress and provide peace of mind for you and your loved ones. Find out about the types of insurance you have access to (or might already be enjoying) as a First State Super member.Read more about insurance
See if your salary can go further
Many employers, particularly in the health sector, offer staff the chance to pay for things like cars, rent and meals from your before-tax pay through a salary packaging arrangement. Find out more about salary packaging and how this could help you save on tax.Tips from Money Smart
Go the extra mile
While the five steps above are a great way to get started on the road to financial wellbeing, there are some extra things you might also like to consider to make the most of your money.
- Create a rainy day fund to cover any unexpected costs that might crop up, such as car repairs or medical fees. This way you’ll be less dependent on credit cards and avoid any unnecessary financial stress. Our savings calculator can help.
- Use a spending tracker like ASIC’s Track my spend app to see how you’re tracking against your monthly budget, based on limits you set for categories such as ‘eating out’ or ‘public transport’.
- Make the most of government support by looking into the types of payments you may be eligible for, such as tax concessions or child care rebates.
- Maximise your tax return (or minimise the tax you may need to pay) by getting help from a registered tax professional. If you’re keen to go it alone, make sure you keep up to date with important news and information from the Australian Tax Office.
Help is at hand
If you’re worried about your current (or future) financial situation, or simply want to see if there’s ways you can make your money work harder for you and your family, you may wish to get professional help.
First State Super members can seek personal advice from a qualified financial planner through our financial planning service^1. Alternatively, you can access free financial counselling through community organisations, community legal centres or some government agencies.