Letting go can be liberating. With industry super fund-owned bank ME, we look at four ways to declutter your finances, inspired by tidying guru Marie Kondo
Decluttering expert Marie Kondo is riding a wave of popularity with her Netflix series based on the KonMari method of tidying up homes.
It’s no surprise Kondo’s ideas are a hit. Psychologists have long-known that mess causes stress, so why stop at our homes? Inspired by Kondo, we look at four ways to declutter your finances and regain control of your money.
1) Get the easy stuff out of the way first
Kondo recommends kick-starting the declutter process by clearing out items that hold the least emotional attachment. When it comes to money matters, that’s likely to be your transaction account.
Having multiple transaction accounts can mean paying unnecessary account fees. It can also make it hard to track debits and credits into and out of various accounts. Who needs that confusion?
Moving to a single transaction account can help you stay on top of your money and save on fees.
2) Get a clear understanding of what you have
Kondo asks her clients to gather all their clothing and pile it in one spot for a clear view of everything they own.
Try the same step with your finances. Line up all of your accounts – from your bank accounts to your super - and take a close look at whether they’re still working in your favour.
It can be quite an eye-opener. You could find, for instance, that your home loan or savings account no longer offer a competitive interest rate. You may discover multiple super accounts, all charging fees and eating away at your balance. If that sounds like you, think about consolidating your super into one easy to manage fund.
3) Don’t spread the clutter
Kondo has found that people often hide items in different rooms, spreading the clutter rather than addressing the problem.
It can be a similar story with credit cards. Constantly shifting balances from one maxed out card to a new card doesn’t mean taking control of the debt. It just delays paying off the balance.
If juggling multiple cards sounds familiar, look at consolidating to just one card.
4) Have a system in place to stay on top of the mess
When the cameras stop rolling on Kondo’s clients, we’re left wondering whether they’ll keep their homes clutter-free.
Don’t leave your newly tidied finances to chance. Staying on top of your money calls for a system.
Consider putting your bills on autopilot by setting up direct payments out of your transaction account. Set calendar dates to regularly review the balance, fees and any returns on your key accounts like your super. This can prevent old bad habits from creeping in and also potentially save you money in the long run.
By taking a few tips from Marie Kondo, it’s possible to see your spark a little joy in your finances.
This article is brought to you by ME. For more information visit www.mebank.com.au
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