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I’m a financial advisor and here’s my 5 step checklist to keep stress about money away

Meet Gerry Incollingo, Managing Partner of LCI Partners financial advisers. He’s jumped in this month with some insight directly from him as to how you can best keep the stresses of your bank account to a minimum.

Here we go…

Thanks to COVID-19, the never-seen-before, once in a century type of weather events that now
seem to be occurring each season and the inability to find employees to harvest produce that did
survive the floods, the cost of living in 2022 has skyrocketed. And it can be worrying, even for
those of us who are financial advisors. Here is my 5-step checklist to keep stress about money
away.

Step 1. Re-evaluate your budget

With the cost of inflation and interest rates rising, the budget you created at the beginning of the
year as part of your new year resolution will be outdated. With the new financial year already
here, there’s no better time than now to re-evaluate your incomings and outgoings. Look at ways
you can consolidate any loans. Talk to your bank about locking in a fixed rate for your mortgage,
or if you’re renting, consider getting a roommate or downsizing. There may be outgoings that you
can cut back on, such as entertainment or transport costs. Talk to a money expert if you’re not
sure where to start.

Step 2. Use your tax return wisely

Did you know the average Australian gets $2,000 back when they file their tax return? Instead of
using the money to purchase early Christmas presents for the kids or deposit for a Disneyland
holiday, find wiser ways to spend the money. For example, you could put it into your savings
account for an emergency, pay off some of your credit card debt or top up your superannuation.

Step 3. Generate a passive income

You don’t necessarily need to have investment properties or stocks and bonds to generate a
passive income. There are plenty of different ways you can make some extra money. It simply
requires a little effort. Perhaps you could become a micro influencer (between 10,000 to 50,000
followers) for Instagram, write a corporate or self-help e-book, sell photography online, or turn
any of your hobbies into a money-spinner.

Step 4. Declutter

We all have houses full of stuff we haven’t used for years—books you no longer read, DVDs you
no longer watch, Christmas gifts you’ve never used. Someone else’s trash is another’s treasure.
You could be sitting on a goldmine of second-hand goods to give you an extra bit of money to
support you through tough times.

Step 5. Talk to a financial advisor

This sounds like common sense, but you would be surprised at how many people simply don’t
talk to a financial advisor before your money situation gets out of control. Sometimes, it’s good to
have an outsider’s perspective or a mediator when couples don’t agree on how the finances
should be divided. You may get some great insight and some ideas you may never have thought
of.

This content does not constitute financial advice. Do your own research and make your own decisions.

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