Want some new year’s resolutions that are easy to stick to and will make a huge difference to your financial future? We hear you…

New year’s resolutions your future self will thank you for

New year’s resolutions always seem a great idea in theory – they’re all things we want our future selves to do, to help us achieve something we want to achieve.

But, the reality is, that before February’s even in sight, most resolutions have fallen by the wayside. We’ve not gone to the gym as much as we’d promised we would, we’ve had that extra glass of wine we vowed we wouldn’t and, as for the diet, it was lucky to see Australia Day.

We make new year’s resolutions for all of the right reasons however, and to stick to them they’ve got to be achievable and realistic.

If part of your dream for 2022 is about creating a stronger financial future for yourself and your family then read on, because our experts from Fennell West’s Geelong office – Ryan Sealey, Catherine Allen and Pete Williamson – have a few tips that don’t require a great deal of effort, but could make a significant difference over the coming years.

Believe us, your future self will definitely thank you.

Tip #1 Do your budget

Yes, yes, yes. You hear the word budget and immediately roll your eyes. We know. But it’s well worthwhile doing – because otherwise you’re flying (spending) blind. By putting together a quick budget, you can make sure you’ve got the essentials covered, know what you’ve got to spend and – most importantly – what you can save.

“Cash flow’s the biggest impact on your long-term budget – Christmas will have seen some splurges on presents, going out and holidays, so getting a good grasp on your financial situation and budgeting for the year ahead is a great way to start 2022,” says Pete.

Even if it doesn’t sound all that exciting…

“After the past two years, I’m sure the majority of us are keen to get away for a holiday, so budgeting for that can make it a reality,” he continues.

That’s better.


Tip #2  Put a little extra into super

How much is a decent coffee? $5? Now, rest assured none of us here at Fennell West would ever even suggest you forego that morning caffeine hit – but could you match the money you spend on coffee each day with additional super contributions?

$5 every day adds up to almost $2000 ever year… and if you do it before tax (remember super contributions can be tax deductible) it adds up to a whole lot more. Get it automatically deducted as salary sacrifice and you won’t even notice it.

“It’s never too early to start additional super contributions,” says Catherine. “Those little incremental changes are quite powerful down the track – and can seriously add up over the years.”


Tip #3 Review your home loan

Interest rates are in the news at the moment because they are beginning to rise. A small increase can make a big difference to your home loan repayments, and it’s worthwhile reviewing your home loan with your broker to ensure it’s the best one you can currently get.

“If you haven’t spoken to your bank or broker in the last three years, the chances are you’re paying too much,” says Ryan. “With rates expected to rise, you may want to consider fixing for certainty of payments – you might pay a little more, but at least you’ll know what you’re paying.”

It’s an easy one to do – reviewing your home loan costs nothing – and could literally save you thousands.


Tip #4 Have a long term plan

Want to buy that first home or investment property? Or maybe you want to achieve something else, financially? Whatever it is, you need to plan for it!

And, while property is an obvious investment asset to look at, others with lower entry costs might be worthwhile considering, too.

“Property is really easy because you can see it,” says Ryan. “However if you want to begin an investment portfolio you can start relatively small – $10,000 for example – and just get used to how it operates, the volatility, the dividends and the tax implications.”


Tip #5 Take care of yourself, too

The past couple of years has been tough – and, in some respects, 2021 has been a lot harder than the previous year. Lockdowns have been incredibly hard on many different levels, and it’s important to remember to invest time in yourself over the coming months – years – too.

Take walks, exercise, enjoy the outdoors – having a mental health reset is incredibly important. Spend some time on yourself – and don’t feel guilty about it either.

“It’s important for all of us to remember to do,” says Pete.

“When I look back, I was really flat when that second Covid wave hit,” says Catherine. “It was just ‘here we go again’.

“I’m really looking forward to 2022, there’s a good light at the end of the tunnel, and I hope we can all be positive, take care of each other and remember to ask each other ‘how are you?’.”