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Budgeting Service

Would you like to save for;
  • Your first home
  • A new home
  • An investment property
  • A holiday
  • A new car
  • A boat
  • Your wedding
  • Education
  • Retirement
  • Financial independence
  • Emergency 
 Or are you;
  • Spending more than you earn?
  • Living beyond your means?
  • Financially stressed?
  • Feeling overwhelmed by financial commitments?
  • Arguing with your spouse or partner due to financial stress?
  • Playing the blame game?
  • Working harder but not getting anywhere financially?

Are creditors chasing you or does the bank keep calling? 

Would you just like to get back on track and live a financially happy life?

Don’t be scared to do something about it and act now, it might be the most important decision of your life.
Be scared if you don’t act now…..things will only get worse.

IMPORTANT

So, if do you want to learn how to budget, save money, live within your means or just get back on track then please read the information below and let it be your first step to being and feeling financially in control.

The skill of making money is important, but the skill of controlling or managing your money is even more important. Consider the many business people who suffered losses and hardship during the Global Financial Crisis (GFC), many were skilled at making money but were apparently not so good at managing it….why?
Lack of Discipline, ego or both?

Think of people you know who have good incomes but are not managing their cash flow, they might drive nice cars and live in large beautiful homes, but struggle to meet their monthly commitments…why?
Lack Discipline, ego or both?

Now compare them to people you know who have moderate or even low incomes but have a positive net worth and surplus cash flow….why?
Discipline, no ego, smart or all three?

“IT DOES NOT MATTER HOW MUCH YOU EARN,

IT’S WHAT YOU DO WITH IT THAT COUNTS”


If you don’t have the provision, know how or discipline to manage your cash flow for the ups and downs over time, to provide for unexpected events and to adhere to even a basic plan “budget” based on realistic goals and expectations, then just like a company you, couples, families face liquidity risk….that’s a fact.

To reduce this risk or financial stress and ensure you are living within your means, you need to:
  • Identify your goals
  • Priorities
  • Establish a budget
  • Have Discipline 
  • Review and revise your ongoing financial situation, goals and plans as circumstances change
However, just like everything in life, if you want to achieve something it requires planning, practice and discipline. Without the proper support, assistance and training it will be very difficult if not impossible to achieve.

Many brokers or advisers fail to implement such a plan for their customers and only interested in the short term benefit. 

MediLend can assist and train you to prepare a budget and manage your finances effectively, based on realistic goals and expectations. This will help you meet your financial goals, commitments and achieve long term goals, and that impacts your business and personal goals as well.

How do we accomplish this?


Step 1. Identify your financial goals and priorities

Your existing financial situation needs to be clearly understood before any assistance can be provided, we do this by undertaking detailed “data collection” discussions with you. This process helps you not just for ‘the now’, but also for what future events may be relevant.

Step 2. Understand your existing financial situation

Before we can analyse your goals or prepare a budget solution, we need to understand your financial situation. This is not only a logical thing to do, but also a legal requirement for providing credit assistants for regulated loans under the National Consumer Credit Protection Act.

“why would anyone apply for credit, lease, mortgage etc, without knowing and understanding their existing financial situation, it would be financial suicide”

The main tool is to provide you with a detailed data collection form “Fact Finder” (can be downloaded from our web-site).

To confirm the accuracy of the data and to collect information you might be unaware of, it would be wise to request and obtain supporting documents; e.g., 
  • Investment & credit statements
  • Asset register
  • Insurance contracts
  • Tax statements
It might be necessary to contact (with written permission) your other advisors, such as your accountant or insurance agent


Step 3. Identify your financial goals

“we might tell you are dreaming……. but save you and/or your family from financial stress”

By preparing a budget we can help you understand and identify your financial responsibilities and goals, most importantly to meet those monthly commitments and achieve your long term goals.

Goals need to be specific: for example, the statement “I want to be rich” provides no clarity at all. You need to delve into “what being rich” means to you, perhaps come up with a goal of “I want to retire at the age 55 on the equivalent of $100,000.00 per year….in today’s terms, indexed to inflation”. This is specific measurable and includes a time frame.

Time frame – Your goals should be categorised on the time frame within which they are to be achieved:
  • Short term, 1-2 years
  • Medium term, 2-5 years
  • Long term, 5> years
Realistic – We don’t want to be “dream-killers”, but if you have unrealistic goals, we need to address them. Not doing so may create unrealistic expectations and as a result feeling dissatisfaction with one’s self and our service.

Goals should be challenging, but a want is very different to a need and putting in place realistic plans to achieve those needs.
Take 15 minutes to consider your own financial goals;
  • When would you like  to retire?
  • How much would you like to retire on?
  • What would you like to achieve in the interim?
  • Would you like to leave an estate for the kids?
Be specific, realistic and include a time frame.

Step 4. Prioritise your financial goals

Once your financial goals have been identified and clarified, they need to be prioritised by you, remember this can only be done once we take into account your overall financial situation.

Determine a pecking order because not all goals are achievable. You need to decide which goals are most important, which are non-negotiable, and which you are prepared to forgo if necessary – the ‘need to have’ versus the ‘nice to have’.

Goals are subject to change over time, otherwise most of us would be working as fireman or astronauts right now. Therefore a periodic review is of the highest importance to see how you faring in achieving your goals and/or amending plans accordingly.

Step 5. Budget for Expenses
Although budgeting is relatively simple (not easy), few people do it. Consumer research indicates that 70% of Australians are not even aware if they are cash flow positive or negative…..is this you?

Why don’t people budget? Some reasons or excuses below;
  • Ignorance is bliss. Often we just don’t want to know, especially if we suspect we are living beyond our means. By remaining unaware, they mistakenly believe they can avoid facing the facts…..maybe they can for a while but not forever.
  • They might have the wrong impression about budgeting, thinking it might negatively impact their lifestyle. Actually the reverse is true, budgeting enhances your lifestyle.
  • They don’t like being held accountable.
  • They don’t have an easy or time-effective method to budget.
  • They don’t know how to create or follow a budget.
  • They are lazy or apathetic – in other words they may be aware of the benefits but cannot be bothered taking action or it’s just not a priority…..when it should be first on everyone’s list.
For every reason why you think you shouldn’t budget there is stronger reason why you should;
  • You control your money as opposed to your money controlling you.
  • Determine whether you are living within your means and if not, to create a plan to address this.
  • Become aware of expenses that can be eliminated or reduced, this includes, late fees ,overdrawn fees and interest costs, to free up more income.
We are faced with seemingly endless array of expenses, from the large ones like income tax and loan repayments, to smaller but persistent costs of food, clothing, entertainment, vehicles and health, don’t forget all those fees and fines.

Most expenses are predictable which makes them easy to plan for and others can be unplanned or unexpected in scale. It is these unplanned and unexpected expenses that can push a tight cash situation into a major crises.

When building your budget it helps to distinguish between expense types, put these in the following categories;
  • Wants vs needs
  • Regular vs irregular
  • Discretionary vs non-discretionary
For example, is a flat TV screen a need or a want, clothing a irregular or regular purchase? We can assist you decide which categories to use and where the individual expenses will sit.

Step 6. Budget for savings

Budgeting is not simply a tool to manage the payment of expenses, but also to manage savings and long-term wealth creation. By identifying what portion of income needs to be set aside for non-discretionary spending, you can determine how much of your income is remaining for;
  • Savings - periodic setting aside of money for shorter term goals, e.g., property deposit, holiday, cash safety buffer.
  • Investment – the longer term use of money/capital to generate income, capital growth, such as purchasing and investment property.
  • Luxuries – once your needs have been accountant for and funds have been set aside for savings and investing, you can use your remaining funds for luxury spending. Knowing how much is available helps avoid overspending in this category.
Step 7. Identify all income and expenditure
It is essential to identify all income and expenditure within a given period, especially when the amounts can vary across time frames.

You require a comprehensive budget template, not one that attempts to simplify the task of budgeting, like requesting a single dollar amount to cover multiple components, for e.g., ‘income’ or ‘living expenses’. Taking a generalised approach can be a disaster, what to include or what not to include, resulting in inaccurate figures that are difficult to review and virtually meaningless to analyse.

A budget needs to break income and expenses down into individual line items, this will actually make the task of completing a budget more easy.

Our budget template is easy to understand and complete, we can assist you with this or you can just send us a request.

Some common documents requested by us to accurately identify your income and expenditure;
  • Savings, cheque and offset accounts
  • Credit card and loan statements
  • Pay slips and employment contracts
  • Tax assessments (including trust and companies)
  • Insurance statements
  • Rates and body corporate notices
  • Superannuation statements
  • Invoices and receipts
If you find it difficult to obtain these documents then we can assist you and make it easy by providing you with the processes and tools you need to retain and file documents.

This is a personal service we provide to our customers.

Step 8. Budgeting tools
“Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime”

As with budgeting, we can help you and assist you and conduct ongoing assistance as part of our ‘budget service’, but you will be best served by learning how to manage your own money.

We can provide you with;
  • A comprehensive Spread-sheet Template, tailored to your specific needs. 
  • Support Services, working closely with you to manage the entire process. This is a high level of care that we offer.
  • Credit Counselling
  • Provide strategies and tips, knowledge is more crucial than tools, understanding how to collect accurate data, analyse it, interpret results and determine what strategies need to be implemented is very important. These are skills you can learn and that we would be happy to assist you with along the way.
Besides assisting you to prepare a budget, we can help with;
  • How to manage debt and credit effectively
  • How to minimise fees and charges
  • How to curb impulsive buying
  • Conduct a budget audit
  • Create a Cash Management System
  • How to establish a savings program
  • Paying too much tax (working closely with your accountant).
Step 9. Budgeting Tips

  • Be realistic
  • Retain all financial documents
  • Budget for unplanned expenses
  • Round conservatively
  • Consider new events
  • Track unexplained expenses
  • Use Comprehensive budget templates – call on us 1300 636 000 or send us a request via e-mail.
  • Don’t suggest amounts – be clear, tack the time to be accurate.
  • Categorise expenses.
  • Establish a cash management system.
  • Establish a savings plan.
  • Schedule activities – e.g., paying bills, transferring funds, checking statements and reviewing plans/budgets. Once a month is good.
Step 10. Reviewing Budgets

For many people a budget is a snapshot of their situation at a given point in time, but if used correctly it becomes a planning tool, enabling the you to analyse the impact of decisions and events on their cash flow before the decision or event even occurs.

  • We recommend annual reviews with all our clients, reasons why this is important;
  • The need to update to reflect occurrences or changes in position
  • Having someone assist you will help you ‘stay-on-track’
  • Resetting financial goals as short and medium term goals are realised
  • Tracking expenditure versus budget to keep spending within limits
  • Reviewing spending to ensure it remains appropriate
  • Ensuring it’s ‘not just a good idea’ but that you can actively use and stick to your budget
  • Anticipating blowouts and issues early before they cause significant hardship
  • Supporting and managing your budget
  • What gets reviewed and inspected gets maintained

Often people require not just support but also education and possibly hand-on assistance to know what they should be doing but are just not doing it, therefore please call us on 1300 636 000 or send us an e-mail.

Your information and individual circumstances will be treated with complete confidentiality.