With the new year quickly approaching, now is a great time to make a commitment to boosting your financial health. If you’re deciding on 2018 New Year resolutions, take a look at our guide to easy financial resolutions, that will help you to take control of your finances over the coming year.
1. Stay out of your overdraft
If you’re prone to dipping into your overdraft at the end of the month, you could be harming your financial health, as well as paying hefty overdraft fees. Setting a budget could help you to avoid overspending. Alternatively, prepaid bank cards such as the icount prepaid MastercardⓇ, can help you to manage day-to-day spending. See what our prepaid cards can offer you here.
2. Pay bills on time
Paying bills on time is really important, to ensure that you don’t incur any interest or late payment penalty fees. Set up direct debit payments so bills are paid automatically on time each month, or add a reminder to your phone to remind you a few days before the payment is due.
3. Spring clean your direct debits
It’s good to periodically check your direct debits and make sure you know what payments leave your account and when. Not only will this help you manage your cash flow throughout the month, you’ll also be able to cancel any direct debits that you no longer use. Cancelling unused gym memberships or other subscriptions can help you to save a little money each month, which could add up significantly over the year!
4. Commit to building a strong credit score
Your credit score is used by banks and other lenders as an indication of your financial health, as well as how suitable you would be for a loan or mortgage in the future. There are simple steps you can take to help boost your score, such as paying bills on time and reducing debts. Tools such as Creditbuilder™ can also help to show lenders that you’re responsible and push up your credit score.
5. Learn more about finance
One of the best ways to take control of your financial health is to learn more about finances and arm yourself with knowledge. There are plenty of beginners guides online, and organisations such as Citizens Advice can provide guidance and support. Our handy money guides are also a great place to start if you’d like to boost your financial know-how.
6. Start to pay off debts
If you have debts, making even small repayments can have a real impact on your financial standing. Setting up a direct debit to make an automatic payment each month can help to chip away at the amount you owe. Make sure you’re meeting the minimum payment needed each month, to keep you in the lender’s good books and help your credit score.
7. Make the most of your pension scheme
Although retirement may seem a million miles away, you should start thinking about it as soon as you can. If your employer offers a pension scheme, take advantage of their matched contributions to build up your pension pot and build a strong financial future for you and your family.
These tips should have a positive impact on your finances and stand you in good stead for many years to come.