View Post

The Power of the Debt Snowball

In Budgeting Tips, Manage Money, Paying Off Debtby Phil McGilvrayLeave a Comment

In this age of easy credit most of us have at one point or another experienced what it is like to be in debt. Whether it is a mortgage, student loan or high interest consumer debt you will appreciate the fact that paying off your debt is always so much harder than acquiring it. At Grandma’s Jars we are passionate about helping people free themselves from the burden of debt. We know how hard it can be to overcome debt, but we also know that with the right structure even the toughest debts can be conquered. In this blog we will outline the three steps towards eliminating debt using the ‘Debt Snowball Strategy’, a strategy that we have been successfully using with our clients for over 15 years.   Step 1: Identify Your Debts It might sound obvious but the first step to overcoming debt is to have a thorough understanding of what you actually owe. Start by writing down who you owe and the total balance owed. Once you have done this, add the details, such as: the interest rate the minimum repayment required your current actual payment amount how long the loan has left to run if it …

View Post

How to Save Money Everyday in Six Ways

In Budgeting Tips, How to Save Moneyby Phil McGilvrayLeave a Comment

In our previous blog we discussed the ‘Golden Rule’ of financial management – “Your income must always be greater than your expenditure”. It sounds simple enough but it can be really hard to do; life is always far more expensive than we would like it to be! In this blog, I will take you through the 6 most common areas of over expenditure and outline some strategies for reducing these costs in your budget.   1 : Debt Repayments Most of our members come to Grandma’s Jars with some form of personal debt so it is not a surprise that this is a key area of expenditure. The problem with taking on debt today is that it robs us of tomorrow’s cash flow. The more debt we have, the less free cash flow we have available to save, accelerate repayments on existing debt, or pay cash for items in the future. Helping our members eliminate lifestyle debt from their lives is a primary objective for Grandma’s Jars. Here a few quick strategies: It sounds obvious but needs to be said- no more debt; debt is a habit – break the habit by committing yourself to taking on no more debt! …

View Post

When Do You Need a Budget?

In Budgeting Tips, Manage Money, Mortgage Advice for Young Couples, Paying Off Debtby Phil McGilvrayLeave a Comment

As a budget coach, I think the answer to this is always. It is an unfortunate misconception that most people seem to think that they only need to budget when money is tight. But this view of budgeting seriously understates the powerful impact a good budget will have on a person’s long term wealth. In my role as a portfolio manager, I have managed multi-million dollar portfolios. It is rarely the people with the high paying jobs that have the greatest wealth but rather those that have earned modest incomes, budgeted well, and consistently grown their savings that end up the wealthiest. Having a high income is never enough, it is what you do with what you earn that has the biggest impact on your long term wealth.   It is too easy to forget that what we are doing when we go to work is trading our most valuable resource, ‘time’, in return for money. Your average Australian earns $60,000, or $45,000 after tax and superannuation. This means every dollar you earn costs you 2.33 minutes of your life. Every time you spend $206 you will need to add another 88 minutes of work to make it back. In …

View Post

How to Budget – Understanding Your Budget Shortfall

In Budgeting Tips, How to Budget Seriesby Phil McGilvrayLeave a Comment

How to Budget Principle # 3 In this series of blogs, I look at the 5 core principles that made my Grandma’s budgeting system so simple yet so powerful. While we no longer budget using a collection of glass jars tucked away in the kitchen cupboard, the principles behind Grandma’s system are just as relevant today as they were 25 years ago. In our first blog in this series, we discussed the importance of taking time to thoroughly identify all of our expenses. Not only do we need to know what our expenses are but we also need to know how much each expense is, how frequently it occurs, and, where appropriate, when it is next due. In our second blog, we outlined the process and importance of converting all our income and expenses to a monthly figure so we know exactly how much we need to set aside for each expense each and every month. The logic behind this principle is that if we set aside 1/12th of our future expenses each month we will have accumulated sufficient money ready to pay each expense when it turns up. However, there is one glaring problem with this system when first …

View Post

How to Budget – Calculating Your Expenses

In How to Budget Seriesby Phil McGilvrayLeave a Comment

How to Budget Principle # 2 In this series of blogs I am looking at the 5 core principles that made my Grandma’s budgeting system so simple yet so powerful. While we no longer budget using a collection of glass jars tucked away in the kitchen cupboard, the principles behind Grandma’s system are just as relevant today as they were 25 years ago.

View Post

How to Budget – Understanding Your Expenses

In How to Budget Seriesby Phil McGilvrayLeave a Comment

How to Budget Principle #1 One of the most important steps when it comes to setting up a successful budget is investing time in gaining a true understanding of your expenses. Too often do we turn to budgeting at a point of financial crisis. The pressure is on to pay the bills, we need a budget and we need it now! In our hurry to pull off a financial miracle, we deliberately leave some expenses out, completely forget some, and naively underestimate others.

View Post

Having Fun While Sticking to a Budget

In Budgeting Tipsby Phil McGilvrayLeave a Comment

There is a little saying, “Nothing worth doing is ever easy”, which is especially true of budgeting. After all if budgeting was easy everyone would be doing it. There would be no lifestyle debt and we would all have plenty of savings. But the reality is budgeting like losing weight can at times be hard work especially when working towards big long term goals like getting out of debt or saving to buy a home.