jamethiel: Money! (Money)
[personal profile] jamethiel
It's great to see people using the comm! If anybody has any suggestions or alterations please feel free to make them! I'd love to hear from you.

An update on my progression to my goals )
jamethiel: Money! (Money)
[personal profile] jamethiel
So. This comm has been a little quiet lately. A large part of this is because I lost the plot for a little while. I got out of nearly three grand's worth of credit card debt. Then I promptly got back into debt again. So this is going to be a post about what I have learned about getting out of debt and things I would do again, wouldn't do again and what didn't work for me.

The first step. )

Next: Try to stop. )
Balance transfers )
Pay yourself first )

Minimum repayments are not your friend )

Finally: don't short yourself )

Some philosophical stuff about the use of credit. )

A grab-bag of organisational stuff that I find helps. )

Future plans )

So, how are you all doing?

Hi there!

Sep. 17th, 2010 09:19 am
jamethiel: A common kingfisher sits on a branch with a background of green foliage. (Default)
[personal profile] jamethiel
Hello, actyourwagers! I'm jame, your friendly mod. Sorry I've been so absent of late, my life kind of exploded a couple of months ago and it took me a while to adjust.

Just a quick modly note before I ramble on: it's great to see so many new people here! There are a couple of people who I haven't approved yet, largely because their journals have no userinfor/public posts, and haven't got an approved email so I can't send them a message. If I haven't approved your membership yet, could you please comment to this post stating you've read the rules (check the comm userinfo) and you'll abide by them? Thanks.

Cut for rambling about the next steps on my financial journey )
jamethiel: Money! (Money)
[personal profile] jamethiel
Comment on this post with what you've achieved over the past week! Let us know what you're going to do over the next week!

My achievement )
jamethiel: Money! (Money)
[personal profile] jamethiel
(Yes, I do realise that's the most pretentious subject line ever. Moving on)

I am in an unusual position at the moment. I am two months away from getting out of credit card debt. Easily, with no extra repayments beyond what I'd already budgeted for. My other short-term goal, a yearly train ticket has been achieved. It's sitting in my wallet right now and I've got an automatic debit into an account that I can't touch that empties once a year so I've got next year's ticket set up.

What do I do now?.

I do have longterm goals. Of course I do. But the thing with longterm goals is that I can't concentrate on them too much or I go crazy. They're so far away! My short-term goals are finished, my medium term goals are now short-term goals and they're either achieved or a blink away from being achieved.

I do have another medium-term goal which I'm going to start--building a cushion of three months salary as savings. I think I can make progress on that but it's going to take a while. I could break that down into smaller goals and then look into places where I can shove the money so I can't touch it? Term deposit or the like? Does anyone have any suggestions?

I suppose I could start saving for a computer as I think my laptop is getting to the end of its life? I might also set aside a small amount of money for a celebration of some sort, only I've retrained my brain to such an extent that I don't really WANT anything. Maybe I should save for a good suit.

I don't know! Tell me what to do!
vass: A bottle of diet Coke with the words "When you pry it from my cold, caffeineless hands." (diet Coke)
[personal profile] vass
I have come to the conclusion that the most frugal thing I could do is to stop drinking diet Coke and put all the money I spend per month on soft drinks into a savings account. I really, really love diet Coke. But I want a savings cushion, and the money has to come from somewhere.

If I give up diet Coke and icecream except for special occasions, I'll save about AUD$120 per month. I have enough tea, both loose leaf and in bags, to last me a long time, because I simply like the diet Coke better, for the caffeine; and for the hydration I can simply drink water.

If I substitute chickpeas (51c for 100g dry even if I don't buy them in bulk, then cooked in the crockpot and then refrigerated or frozen) for my beloved vegetarian hot dogs (on which I spend about $25 a week) I'll save nearly $70 a month.

If I made just these changes and no others, I could have a $1000 cushion in less than half a year.

Or I could be less frugal and just buy soda water instead of Coke, and save $45.30 per month. I'd still get my cushion in less than 7 months. And maybe at the end of that time, I won't want Coke or icecream or vegie hot dogs any more. (It seems unlikely, but people's tastes do change.) Or I could just be happy with my cushion, and go back to my old wasteful ways. Or I could do it half a year every year, and in five years I'd have enough for a term deposit.

I would like some encouragement, please, because I'm very scared.
jamethiel: Money! (Money)
[personal profile] jamethiel
Hello everyone! How did your weeks go? Did you succeed in not eating out?

I didn't. I got sick (again. Or still. Stupid ears) and that led to me just being too damn tired to make the right choices. I did have dinner at home every night but that was mostly cooked for me and sometimes consisted of canned soup.

Lunch was where I really fell over. I am craving take-away food like there's no tomorrow. High fat, high salt, high in chilli. I bought lunch probably six times over the past two weeks.

But, it happens. With the ferocity I was craving stuff, I decided to go with it. It's not the best decision in the world, but it's not the worst either. Stuff happens and you deal the best you can.

I really debated whether to make this a separate post or not, but I guess I'll stick it under a cut tag at the end so as not to spam your reading lists.

cut for talk of my personal finances )
jamethiel: A common kingfisher sits on a branch with a background of green foliage. (Default)
[personal profile] jamethiel
I've said it many times before, but personal financial management is as much about psychology as anything else.

One of the things I have is a LOT of goals. There's getting the credit card debt gone. There's saving up for a house deposit. I want to have a yearly public transport ticket. I want a digital SLR. I want my tattoo finished. I want three months wages as a buffer.

Cut for musing )
jamethiel: Money! (Money)
[personal profile] jamethiel
Today I had a salutory lesson. I was just viewing articles in my local paper online and it had a link: "Compare savings accounts!" kind of thing.

I tend to transfer money that I'm not intending to spend in the next week out of my bank account into a linked internet savings account. It works for me--stops me spending money I need to spend on bills, puts any excess money in a place where I can't get to it easily for impulse spending. I can access it by two business days at the outside and it provides me with a bit of a buffer. So I'm all set, right?

Banks rely to a large extent on both customer loyalty and inertia to keep your business with them. The thing is, switching isn't that hard or stressful. Let me be perfectly clear: banks make money off you. Every account you have with money in it, they're making interest over and on top of any interest they pay to you. They have a perfect right to make money--and you as a customer have a perfect right to assess their services and take your business elsewhere if you can get a better deal. Don't let them rattle you. I can provide a number of helpful links for Aussies, at least, who wish to switch bank accounts (just ask in the comments).

What the hell. I was bored. I clicked on the link to evaluate savings accounts.

Cut for length )
jamethiel: A common kingfisher sits on a branch with a background of green foliage. (Default)
[personal profile] jamethiel
I'm going to state a concept that you will find in every single decent finance blog/book EVER.

To save money, your income must exceed your expenditure.

That's it. There's no magic formula, no "Do this! You will become rich overnight!" How to do that, though? Financial management is as much about psychology as it is about mathematics.

cut for long post )
jamethiel: Money! (Money)
[personal profile] jamethiel
So, there are things you want to do in life. Get out of Debt. Own a house. Maybe an overseas holiday.

Unless you have really good money management skills already, these things are not easy.

So I want you all to take ten or twenty minutes and think about what you want out of life that money will help you towards. Go on, I'll wait. Write them down.

Now analyse your goals in terms of time. When will you realistically be able to achieve this? Start ranking your goals in terms of short term, medium term, and long term. Put anything you don't think you can ever achieve in long term. (As a guideline, short term is something you can achieve in the next month, medium term is something that will take a couple of months to a year and long term is over a year)

Set them out in a list. Have it written down. Writing things down makes them more concrete, and also helps you keep your priorities on track. For example, have my list.

cut for burbling about me )

So, I'd like to hear from you! What are your goals?