Business

Six tips to get your finances back on track

ON TRACK: Keep your bills where you can see them, and put the one due first at the front.
ON TRACK: Keep your bills where you can see them, and put the one due first at the front. David Sacks

LIVING is expensive. I've done it tough in the past, it's hard. Keeping on top of your bills is so important. Not doing so can result in legal action and a black spot on your credit rating.

Here are my tips on how to keep on top of bills, and what to do when you can't pay them.

1. Know your bills

Everyone has received an unexpected bill at some time or other. Write a list of all your yearly bills, and the month they are due. Try to avoid too many bills being due in November or December, when you need that extra cash for Christmas.

2. Set up an emergency fund

It is always good to have an "emergency” fund for those unexpected costs. Start a direct debit straight into a savings account, even if it is as little as $10 a week.

3. Direct debit is your friend

All banks and credit unions have the option to set up a recurring payment. You can set up the amount, how often you want it transferred, and on what day it suits you. This is particularly great for bills like electricity, rates, rent, mortgage repayments or school fees.

4. Monitor unnecessary spending

No more fancy coffee, no more chocolate frogs for the kids. If you are struggling to pay your bills, these little things add up and cost you money. Limit gifts to a certain amount. Kids don't need 30 gifts for their birthday or Christmas.

5. Do not spend more than you earn

This is a trap that is so easy to fall into, especially if you regularly add things to the credit card. Not only do you have to live, you also need to start paying back that money, which means you end up in a "circle of doom”. Look at your expenses and cut some out.

6. Be on time with payments

Not being on time with bills means you will incur late fees, another cost you don't need. If you really can't pay, get on the phone and stay in touch with your creditor. Keep your bills where you can see them, and put the one due first at the front. Highlight the amount due and the date.

Topics:  budgets, budgetting, finance, money, personal, save



Lifeguard says shark sightings had increased not numbers

SHARKS SPOTTED: Two great white sharks were spotted at Boambee beach this morning by a NSWDPI aerial team.

Great white sharks spotted off Coffs Coast

Spring property hard to find

SHORT ON SELLERS: Spring is yet to see the usual influx of vendors keen to sell.

Spring selling season off to a slow start

Dumping tosses costs on charities and rates

FED UP: Lifeline's warehouse manager Marc Hutchinson and retail co-ordinator Jo Anne Auston are frustrated at the amount of rubbish dumped at the Toormina store.

Dumping costs charities and Coffs Coasts rate payers

Local Partners

Channel 9 orders second season of Doctor Doctor

Rodger Corser stars in the TV series Doctor Doctor.

RURAL medical drama finds a loyal following.

MOVIE REVIEW: Storks delivers family fun

A scene from the movie Storks.

ANIMATION can be hit or miss but when it hits, it hits hard.

Nick 'the snake' to call the shots on Survivor jury

Australian Survivor contestant Nick Iadanza.

LATEST evictee is out of the game but will still have a say.

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber split

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber have split after 11 years together.

Why Chris Hemsworth was spotted wearing nail polish

RED CARPET: Do you think Chris Hemsworth is the typical unpolished but well-natured Aussie bloke?

He's now officially the best bloke in Australia

Testament's new album is a concept album

ROME, ITALY- JULY 27, 2016: Testament photographed at The Roman Collisseium in Rome, Italy on July 27,2016. Gene Ambo

Testament to release new album

Spring property hard to find

SHORT ON SELLERS: Spring is yet to see the usual influx of vendors keen to sell.

Spring selling season off to a slow start

Coffs region is hot property

The region’s housing market is looking up, with projects on the radar in Tannum Sands and Boyne Island.

Units and houses are both pulling strong returns for Coffs

UPDATE: Former rodeo champ's sale rained out, now back on

Larkhill local Ken Consiglio is having an auction of most of the things on his property.

'People kept showing up and we had to turn them away'

Couple build their own 'tiny house' for $45k

Holly Bowen and Oli Bucher built their "tiny house" themselves, only hiring a plumber and an electrician. Photo/supplied

The house, which is built on a trailer and can be towed.

Sunshine Beach property breaks real estate record

The property overlooks Sunshine Beach, as the backyard lawn meets the sand.

Sunshine Beach mansion sale smashes real estate record

SOLD: Historic hotel finds new owner

Post Office Hotel Grafton

Photo Adam Hourigan / The Daily Examiner

Pub in new hands and heading in a brand new direction