saving

Why paying off debt before saving is essential

The problem with debt is that often the interest on it is high – really high! In order to become financially healthy we must first pay off all loans and credit card debt. The only exception to this is with mortgages and car leases, which are ongoing costs (unless you are in arrears, in which case pay these off first too).

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Finances Audit Questionnaire

One of the easiest ways to do a life audit is to just ask yourself ten questions for each area of your life and then give yourself a score to find out how to rate yourself.

 

Below I’ve outlined ten questions for your finances life area so you can easily assess where you’re currently at – simply give yourself a score out of ten for each question with one being awful and ten being excellent, with no room for improvement.

 

Finances

 

  1. Do you have financial goals? (i.e. pay off debt, save for holiday, join a pension scheme?)
  2. Have you achieved any of your financial goals in the past?
  3. Do you have a monthly budget and do you stick to it?
  4. Do you have enough money to pay your bills?
  5. Do you frequently spend more than you make? (Reverse scoring: 1 = always overspend 10 = never overspend)
  6. Do you have debt and are you paying it off?
  7. Do you have at least six months worth of living costs saved up as an emergency fund? (Scoring: no savings = 1, one month = 2, two months = 3, loads of savings = 10)
  8. Do you earn enough money to save?
  9. Do you have a pension you contribute to?
  10. Do you think you use your money wisely for the future?

 

Now add up your total score. Below is the scoring key:

 

1-10       =             1 mark out of 10 (poor)

11-20     =             2 marks out of 10

21-30     =             3 marks out of 10

31-40     =             4 marks out of 10

41-50     =             5 marks out of 10

51-60     =             6 marks out of 10

61-70     =             7 marks out of 10

71-80     =             8 marks out of 10

81-90     =             9 marks out of 10

91-100   =             10 marks out of 10 (amazing)

 

Crystal Clear Questions

 

Answering the following questions will help you to get crystal clear on what a perfect ten score for your work would look like in reality.

 

Have you checked what your credit score is and if not have you considered finding out through Experion? Once you know your credit score you could seek advice on how to improve your rating!

 

Do you have a monthly budget for the upcoming year? Do you have financial goals for the upcoming year? If not to either I would highly recommend doing so in order to gain forward momentum and direction with regards to your finances.

 

Do you know where your money goes each month and if not have you considered recording your spending?

 

Do you struggle to stick to your budget and if so have you considered working with cash only and placing money into labeled envelopes each month to eliminate over spending?

 

Are you satisfied you are saving enough and using your money wisely? Do you have a budget and do you stick to it? Did you find the questionnaire helpful? Please share your thoughts in the comments below to gain encouragement, insight and support from our community, we’d love to hear from you.