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  1. #31
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    We are desperately needing to consolidate our debts....but have no idea who will help us. The banks repayments are less than what we are paying now yet we get rejected. It's so hard and depressing

  2. #32
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    Hi @ozeymumof5 perhaps speaking to a community finance counsellor may help? They can help show you where your money is going and refer you to a loan expert regarding consolidating your loans?

  3. #33
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    Hi,

    About 12 months ago we were in a situation where we were on one very modest income and living pay to pay...barely juggling everything. It was hard, we had no savings and even the kids getting a sniffle made shivers run down my spine because there could be a trip to the doctor. So we made the decision to have a little bit of a splash out on Christmas (2013) then to knuckle down because we wanted a house. So on the 26th of December (while DH & the kids were playing in the pool) I sat down with a blank exercise book and wrote down everything we owed and it was scary. I wrote down a budget and worked it until I came up with something that balanced in all area's. The part that scared me the most was the food bill...it was tricky to get it just right but it turned out $300.00 is plenty for a family of 5 for the fortnight. So I worked out the surplus after necessary living expenses and it wasn't until then that I realised exactly how much we were wasting. So for 4 pays/fortnights I put all of that surplus (about $1200.00) off the bills that were owing/coming. Then we had a fresh slate. We began saving and before we knew it we were well on our way to having a healthy home deposit. We then found out in June that we had to move to a new rental house and unfortunately we had to draw out money for the bond and rent in advance so that set us back (followed by not putting much away for a few pays to get some new beds for the kids). But it was a relief that we had the money there to just pay it. So then in July we knuckled down again and we are buying our house just after Christmas. We are on the home stretch now. It scares me though that we will have to part with almost everything we have saved between the deposit & the fees associated with buying the house but I'm sure we will just begin again as it is such a wonderful feeling to have the security of money in the bank. Anyway I have gone a little off track but my tips are...

    1. Pay everything fortnightly/each pay day - Insurance, Power, phone etc...I have quite a few accounts that have no fees which I put money for rego, insurance etc...then they just get paid when due. I B-Pay everything else. My last power bill arrived a few weeks ago and was $95.00 in credit which was a nice suprise.

    2. Go WAY back to basics with groceries - Set a budget and stick to it. I always draw $300.00 out and don't touch my card EVER. If you have the cash you are more likely to keep track of how much you are spending. Buy the cheapest of everything. Don't be afraid to experiment with mince & sausages...it's amazing what you can come up with and everyone goes to bed with a full tummy. I did my shopping today and it came in at $280.51. I was stoked!!!

    3. Ditch the phone plans and opt for prepaid. DH and I spend $30.00 per month between us on credit (Telstra). We put the credit on his phone to receive the free calls/messages then transfer the actual credit to my phone and I buy the text plus packs. It lasts for the month. Our home phone/internet costs $62.00 per month and includes unlimited calls so DH will text me and I'll call him back because it doesn't cost any extra and saves his credit if that makes any sense.

    4. Cut any unnecessary expenses eg Foxtel etc... Also instead of all the after school activities for the kids go walking, play footy as a family etc... kids have way too much on their plates these days anyway and you'd be surprised how good some fun family time is for the mind, body & soul.

    5. Shop at Vinnies/Lifeline etc...I used to buy stuff on sale but this is way cheaper. We get great Jeans and shirts for the kids and so cheap. We still buy their good clothes from Big W but this takes away alot of the cost.

    6. Go without a little bit...you'd be surprised with the things that you don't actually need. It becomes a little bit of fun trying to find ways to save. We are addicted now and so much happier without all the stress.

    I think the hardest part is starting out but stick with it...it gets easier as you go Good Luck Everyone!!!

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    Foxy  (06-11-2014),Jontu  (06-11-2014)

  5. #34
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    I was going to start a thread but this might be a good place to ask even though it's an old thread bumped up. Has anyone got recommendations for a good free budget app? I tried pocketbook but didn't like it. I'm not fussed about having it sync to our accounts but what I need is to budget for three incomes all paid at different intervals (monthly, fortnightly and weekly), one is my casual job so it fluctuates. I also want to include upcoming regular expenses and bills/payments that we currently owe. All preferably for free haha

  6. #35
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    Default Finance/budget support/vent thread - to help us all get our bills under contr...

    @tabledancer have you tried excel spreadsheets for your budget? That's how I do mine, i find it's much simpler than any of the apps I've seen.
    Last edited by Mellie29; 06-01-2015 at 20:35.

  7. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mellie29 View Post
    @tabledancer have you tried excel spreadsheets for your budget? That's how I do mine, i find it's much simpler than any of the apps I've seen.
    I haven't yet @Mellie29 because I don't really know how to use excel lol. It does seem like the best solution though, I might look into working it out I think! Thanks

  8. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by TableDancer View Post
    I haven't yet @Mellie29 because I don't really know how to use excel lol. It does seem like the best solution though, I might look into working it out I think! Thanks
    PM me if you need a hand. Dh is an accountant and set ours up, I've got pretty useful with excel recently

  9. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mellie29 View Post
    PM me if you need a hand. Dh is an accountant and set ours up, I've got pretty useful with excel recently
    Aw thank you, that is a kind offer! One that I will no doubt end up having to take you up on

  10. #39
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    So I'm bumping an old thread again to ask for budget assistance... Mainly on food shopping.

    I thought we were doing ok but was curious why we weren't saving anything each fortnight. I sat down and broke my cc bill up and realised we spent over $600 in a fortnight on shopping Coles/woollies 😱😱😱

    That's only on the cc - I'm scared to even look at my savings as I'm sure I have eftpos a couple of trips...

    Eek - we don't even eat so extravagantly....my son is celiac so we are gluten free so things like bread,cereal,biscuits,cakes are a bit more expensive and my DD is still in nappy pants so I know there is a bit of extra expense but excess of $600 is outrageous for a family of 4!!!

    Any advice

  11. #40
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    the first step I think is to decide what your budget should be. if $600 per fortnight is too much, set a more realistic target.

    I would then meal plan and decide exactly what needs to be bought at your next shop. assuming you're not already doing this. stick to the list and be strict. it's the little impulse buys that add up!

    for the first few shops, or until you have a good handle on how much you're spending, I'd be going shopping with cash. have an envelope with your fortnightly allocated budgeted spending money (pretend $500 for the fortnight) and only spend from that. anything not used goes back into the envelope (even $5 of small change).

    once you get to the end of the fortnight you can see if there's anything left over or if you came up short.

    buying on the credit card is such an easy way to lose track (we do it too so I'm well aware lol) and go over budget.

    you can then decide how to spend any grocery leftovers. either put it into a savings account and put the money towards something fun to do as a family, or blow it on a weekly family treat if you wish.

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