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15th May 2016

 

This short YouTube video illistrates both the power yet the simplicity of a spending plan as a money management tool.

Enjoy!

 

 

1st April 2016 

Am I being too harsh?

 

 

I'm not sure as to whether I am being too harsh or just simply frustrated as a small business owner in regards to other small businesses whom it appears don't want me as a paying customer!


Over the last week I have emailed 3 businesses, each one in a different industry, each one I am or should I say I was willing to spend money on their product or service only to receive NO response from two of the emails at all.

 

The first one was to an overseas travel company. I did receive a very apologetic response stating that my email has made its way into the junk mail folder. Ok, so this happens. The sender of the email was very sincere in her apology and provided a very detailed response to my request. I will deal with them.

 

The second email was to a local hardware manufacturer in Melbourne. It was sent via filling in an on-line form. After three days of no response either by phone or email I ended up spending my money at Bunnings when I was more than willing to spend more money and purchase the locally made product. 


The third email was to a financial services business which has offices in both Melbourne & Sydney. I filled out their on-line form with all my contact details along with the question I had for them. Again no response at all. At this time I am still contemplating as whether I try and contact them again.

 

Now I know I could have taken the time to actually ring both the two local business during business hours but should I need to? They both have websites, both have forms for contact that you fill in on-line. Both forms I completed out of hours. Do I just forgive their very sloppy customer service [or lack thereof] and attempt to contact them via other means or do I just go elsewhere and find someone who is willing to work to gain me as a paying customer. Again I ask, am I being too harsh?

 

Are you struggling to get mortgage ready? Let me help you and at the same time revolutionize the way you handle your finances. Contact me on 0413 587 120 for an obligation free discussion as to how your finances could be improved.

Alternatively contact me via email brad@yourspendingplanner.com.au and see what exemplary customer service looks like.

 

Brad Mander
Your Spending Planner.

 

I'm not sure as to whether I am being too harsh or just simply frustrated as a small business owner in regards to other small businesses whom it appears don't want me as a paying customer!

Over the last week I have emailed 3 businesses, each one in a different industry, each one I am or should I say I was willing to spend money on their product or service only to receive NO response from two of the emails at all.
The first one was to an overseas travel company. I did receive a very apologetic response stating that my email has made its way into the junk mail folder. Ok, so this happens. The sender of the email was very sincere in her apology and provided a very detailed response to my request. I will deal with them.
The second email was to a local hardware manufacturer in Melbourne. It was sent via filling in an on-line form. After three days of no response either by phone or email I ended up spending my money at Bunnings when I was more than willing to spend more money and purchase the locally made product. 

The third email was to a financial services business which has offices in both Melbourne & Sydney. I filled out their on-line form with all my contact details along with the question I had for them. Again no response at all. At this time I am still contemplating as whether I try and contact them again.
Now I know I could have taken the time to actually ring both the two local business during business hours but should I need to? They both have websites, both have forms for contact that you fill in on-line. Both forms I completed out of hours. Do I just forgive their very sloppy customer service [or lack there of] and attempt to contact them via other means or do I just go elsewhere and find someone who is willing to work to gain me as a paying customer. Again I ask, am I being too harsh?

30th November 2015

 

Family Christmas shopping

 

And so this is Christmas!

With Christmas only 25 days away which side of the financial ledger are you going to be on as 2015 draws to an end?

According to the Australian Retailers Association and Roy Morgan Research, Australians are predicted to spend S46.7 billiion in retail stores over the Christmas trading period from November 15 to December 24, 2015. This is a 3.6% increase on last year.

According to Pocketbook Data, looking at December 2014, 60% of Australians spent more than they made! If that is the case then the money must have been accessed from either their savings accounts, bill paying accounts, from under their mattress or more likely the credit card.

 

I don’t think that anyone can doubt that there is a tremendous amount of pressure upon us to spend up big at this time of year. We are continually bombarded by advertisers with their aim for us being to buy, buy, buy. Anyone with children would know that their list for Santa is usually long and takes in no regards Santa’s ability to afford such an exhaustive and often extravagant list of presents.

 

For those who are earning a good wage and have their finances under control surviving Christmas financially can be plain sailing. For the rest of us it can see us moving through somewhat potentially treacherous waters.

 

Here are some handy hints to help you survive financially this Christmas [ or at least have you ready for next].

  • Use a debit card rather than a credit card to purchase goods. At least this way even when to have exhausted all your available funds you haven’t gone in debt.
  • Start your Christmas shopping in January when the New Years sales are on.
  • When buying presents where possible stay clear of the brand names, they carry the higher price often just for the name.
  • Set a limit as to how much you are going to spend on each person and stick to it. Let your family and friends know that is what you are going to do.
  • Open up a Christmas Club account and transfer on a regular basis money into this account so when Christmas comes around you have the funds available to cover you.
  • When buying presents for extended family and friends suggest that they all parktake in a Kris Kringle rather than everyone buying individual presents. You can spend less money overall whilst at the same time buying a more meaningful present for the person who you have been allocated.
  • If you need more cash leading up to Christmas hold a garage sale or sell unwanted items on websites such as eBay or Gumtree. If you like the idea of a garage sale ask your neighbours if they want to be involved as well. It means there will be a greater variety of items up for sale and that it is a great way to get involved in your local neighbourhood and getting to know your neighbours.
  • If your creative give hand made items rather than bought ones. To me they come more from the heart and have added sentimental value years later.
  • If you are having Christmas festivities at your place ensure that you ask those who are invited if they could possibly bring with them a plate to share.
  • If you intent to use a credit card, ensure that the limit is set at a level that you will be able to pay it off in full before the due by date.
  • Avoid the use of Pay Wave and the like. Even though the limit for transactions by this method is usually capped to $100 per transaction you will be amazed at how quickly the purchases can add up especially when you don’t have to physically sign for them. Why do you think that the banks like them so much!
  • Go online to research prices before hitting the shops. You can always ask a retailer if they will match a competitor’s price, even if the competitor is on-line. At worst, all they can say is NO!
  • If using credit cards avoid taking out cash advances as the interest rate on cash advances is usually considerably higher than the standard interest rate for the same card and starts accumulating immediately. No 55 days interest free there!
  • Set up for Christmas savings in your Spending Plan. The money can be channelled into cumulative savings account or open up a new account just for Christmas shopping.

This list is by no means exhaustive. If you have some handy hints of you own please let us know on my Face Book page, Brad Mander – Spending Planner.

 

Christmas is a special time of year but unfortunately it also often is a very stressful time of year for so many. The stress may be related to work, family and most notable, FINANCES.

 

If you can see the benefit of getting your personal finances in order so that you can start 2016 of with a clear financial road map to follow call me now on 0413 587 120 for a no obligation 30 minute chat about your financial situation as how a Spending Plan could help you.

 

A personally structured Spending Plan would make an ideal Christmas gift for someone you know who could do with having their money issues sorted. It is certainly a gift that could turn their life around.

 

Another interesting statistic from the retail association regarding Christmas shopping last year is that those over the age of 14 spent an average of $2,500 each in the six weeks leading to Christmas last year. Scarey!

 

My next blog will concentrate on credit card debt and more importantly how to avoid it.

 

If you enjoy these blogs or think that the information within them is of value, please share amongst your Facebook friends.

 

Consider this, the best thing money can buy is financial freedom!

 

Brad Mander
Your Spending Planner

 

24th November, 2015

 

 

How Quickly It Goes!

 

I have spent the past weekend interstate attending a 3 day certification program for Spending Planners.

 

Staying at a BnB, I needed to recharge my WiFi dongle for some Internet access. Looking at the different recharge plans available I opted for the 5Gb option for $50 as I had a full 12months in which to use it. It sounded perfect.

So I recharged it via my mobile and I was all set to go on-line which I did. That 5 Gb access which I thought would last for months ran out after a meager one hour and 7 minutes. I couldn’t believe it. I didn't download anything or watch any movies! I get 2.5Gb data allowance on my phone per month and I never get near that level and I am on it daily. Telstra were going to hear about this!

 

I got to thinking that this is exactly how many people are with the management of their finances. Payday comes around and they are off and running, or more precisely shopping only stopping when the debit card transaction has been rejected by their financial institution or the wad of cash they they carried around with them has slipped right out through their fingers.

 

How does that happen? The short term happiness of having money to spend till next payday has been replaced by the pain of finacial stress that they have to endure till they get paid next. Is that happiness worth all that pain?

 

No one deliberately goes out to fail, especially when it comes to money. Surely it can't be too hard!

 

The main problem is that at school, the Managing Your Finances 101 class was left off the curriculum. Most of us have never been taught the art of successful cash flow management and naturally we don't know what we don't know. It's not your fault, you just haven't been shown how. Unless we have been lucky enough to have had a good mentor to show us the way it should be done, most of us will stumble from payday to payday trying to manage our finances but usually with no success!

 

So how can you improve your financial outlook and get relief from the stress that accompanies money problems?

 

Call me now on and let me show you a financial roadmap that will guide you through the financial maze for the next 12 months and beyond. Get a personalized Spending Plan for yourself , your partner and more importantly your family. Taking action now will see your new year being a lot brighter and you will be sleeping better at night knowing that at last you can see relief from the financial nightmare you have been enduring.

 

BTW I did compain to Telstra about how quickly my data allowance was chewed up. They credited my account $20 as a once off. Better than nothing I guess!

 

If you enjoy these blogs or think that the information within them is of value, please share amoungst your Facebook friends.

 

Consider this, the best thing money can buy is financial freedom!

 

Brad Mander
Your Spending Planner
(M) 0413 587 120

 

19th November, 2015

 

 

How accessible is your money?

 

A week ago I was driving home from work, and I noticed the fuel gauge nearing empty. I also realized that I had misplaced my wallet. I was moneyless… or was I?

 

After I calmed myself down and stopped berating myself for being so careless in having lost my wallet I set about the endless, fruitless task of searching for it. Thankfully this time (oh yes it’s not the first time) I was very confident that my wallet was lost rather than stolen.

 

Normally If you think that your wallet was stolen rather than misplaced well then you obviously would get all your cards cancelled. In the past my first instinct would have been be to ring up the banks, Vic Roads, the local gym and so forth and cancel all my cards, drivers licence etc. I would have done this without thinking but not so this time. Why? I hear you ask.

 

These days with internet and phone banking we can monitor if there has been any activity on our credit / debit cards virtually in real time. With up to the minute banking balances available and transaction records available on our phones or online, we can see if there has been any unauthorised transactions that have taken place.

 

So the first thing I did was to check my bank app. With no suspicious transactions haven taken place I was more confident than ever that my wallet had been misplaced or should I say lost, rather than stolen.

 

The next realization that I had to face up to, was how was I going to get by without any of my banking cards accessible to me. How was I going to pay for fuel to get to work that night?

 

Thankfully in 2014 the Commonwealth Bank was the first bank to introduce cardless cash withdrawals from ATM’s in Australia. The Westpac Bank was the second of Australia’s big four banks to offer this service of their customers. Dubbed ‘Emergency Cash’ by Westpac, it is intended for customers who have been caught short with cash!

According to an article published on ‘thenews.com.au’ website in May last year, there were over 15,000 cardless transactions made at Commonwealth ATM’s in the first month of this service being available, with this new technology allowing more than $1 million to be withdrawn.

 

So accessing cash from my every day expenses account was not an issue…. phew!

 

Just as easy was purchasing goods and services on line. You can easily find out your credit card number as it the same as your account number on your statement. You will also find it using your banking app and clicking on view accounts. The only other details you will need for on-line purchases is the expiry date of the credit care and the three digit CVC number on the back. Remember those two details and your set to go shopping to your hears content or until your credit card limit has been reached! Not that I recommend you do this.

 

There you have it, even without a wallet, for just the cost of a little inconvenience coupled with internet access and you’re more than capable to carry on financially as you would with all the plastic cards in their right place, in your pocket.

I love Internet banking and all that it offers. Unfortunately for a lot of people, easy access to our money 24/7 and in many cases, the banks money [CREDIT], can be their downfall, creating at times massive debt for themselves, which if kept unchecked can, and often does lead to major issues in all aspects of their lives.

 

Do you go further into debt to pay off debt? Do you ignore letters from the banks or other financial institution who are sending letters of demand? Do you lie awake at night fearing that you will get a visit from the Sherrif?

 

A Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre study has concluded that people were living beyond their means with the level of personal debt tripling from what it was in 1990.

 

If you are concerned about your level of debt, want to reign in your spending or accelerate your savings, having a Spending Plan powered by Simply Budgets software may just be what you need. Call me now on 0413 587 120 to book in for a confidential, no obligation 30 minute chat about how you can control your spending and bring your finances to where you would like them to be.

 

And yes, I have tracked down my wallet, thankfully I get reunited with it tomorrow.

 

Consider this, the best thing money can buy is financial freedom!

 

Brad Mander

Your Spending Planner
[m] 0413 587 120

 

 

 

 

 

 

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