As the temperature outside starts to decline (and the temptation to let our finances fall into hibernation climbs), we’re taking a look back at some of the questions our webinar attendees have raised about how to manage their finances when facing tough economic conditions.
Here are the answers our coaches gave (and links to the webinars they’re from if you’re keen to see the full conversation).
Q: Should I be discouraged by the current environment? It seems pretty hard to get ahead right now.
“Not doing anything is worse than starting to work towards a plan. I always say, “If in doubt, take a small step.” And it’s never too early or late to do something. And taking action is actually really empowering.
The attitude we want to take is: let’s just see where you’re at, and let’s see what’s possible for you, and let’s see what we can do in the first 12 months – even if it’s just to start to feel that you’re in control.”
- Liz Blake – Lunch & Learn: The pillars of financial success
Q: How do you maintain your financial position with the current noise?
“I think the key here is to understand what part of the current noise and headwinds are just that – external noise. Understand what’s real to your situation.
It comes back to having a spending plan and targets in place so you’re not just using the noise as an excuse to not get ahead. Because you can still get ahead – you just need a strategy in place to know what you can be doing right now.
- Justin Gauci – Ask Me Anything
Q: How do I stay optimistic in a housing downturn?
“Hang in there. New Zealanders are often guilty of assuming that either good times or bad times continue. And that is not the case.
It goes in a cycle. And that kind of needs to happen – it’s the natural order of things. Everything goes up over time – so don’t freak out in the bad times.”
- Shelly Palman – Women & Finances: Embracing Equity
Q: How do I maintain momentum while still enjoying life?
“I always say to my clients, it’s not about screwing you down to have no life, you’ve got to live the life you love, but get ahead faster and at the pace to which your effort suggests you should.
But of course, there will be areas where you can tweak your plan – we call that fritter. So, that’s money you are spending that’s not adding anything to your life. If you can find that and do something else with it but do so in a way that gives you the maximum amount of flexibility, then that’s what we’re aiming for.”
- Liz Blake – Women & Finances: Financial confidence
Q: Where can I find extra money without getting a second job?
“The first step is making sure you’re being as intentional as possible with your current position. There’s generally about 15% of net income that goes walkabout – in terms of inefficiencies, some of it around overspending, a lot of it paying too much interest in terms of what they could be doing.
[when it comes to pressures on cash flow] people think earning more money is what fixes this. But in reality, the more you earn, the more you spend, and the more you disconnect from your finances.
- Katie Wesney – How to set financial goals and stick to them
Q: How best to grow my savings in the current economic climate?
“You need to generate a cash surplus. And it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand that that either comes down to earning more or spending less, delaying one-off spending, or doing something different about bringing extra income in. It’s difficult at the moment because of inflation and the cost of living but it’s really a case of drilling down to all of your expenses and looking where you can shave off little bits in terms of discretionary spending.
Once you’ve maximized your savings, then you need to look at ways to grow it.”
Keen to have a chat with a financial adviser about how you can maintain your momentum and light a fire under your finances this winter? Book a consultation with an enable.me financial adviser today. (Fees apply).
Disclaimer: This blog post is for informational purposes only and does not constitute individual financial advice. If you’re interested in receiving financial advice, you can book a consultation with an enable.me coach. Costs apply.