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Debt Management

How can I manage debt?

If you find yourself in a position of overwhelming debt that you need to get on top of, the best thing you can do is get started. No matter what our circumstances, there are many reasons you may find yourself in a position of debt. This leaves you wondering, how can I manage debt?

It doesn’t make you a bad borrower or indicate that you don’t know how to manage your finances. Sometimes, unexpected expenses can crop up that haven’t been budgeted for, leaving you struggling to pay it off. This is where debt management comes into play. We take a look at what is debt management and how to get started.

How can I manage debt?

Are you wondering exactly what is debt management? It is simply a strategy you can put in place to help manage your debts and to put you back in control of your finances. It’s no secret that debt can creep up on us, with unexpected expenses tipping us over the edge. These can’t be planned for and can push us into spiralling debt.

Thankfully, there are plenty of options available when it comes to debt management, so you can find a strategy that suits your individual circumstances to help you get back on top of it. It’s an agreement you enter into with your creditors to manage the repayment of your debts. You can negotiate the terms with your creditors to come with a plan that you can successfully manage to pay back your debts.

There is no simple answer to “how can I manage debt”, however debt management is your best place to begin. Debt management can help you get on top of your finances by getting the help you need to see yourself out of debt on terms you can meet. It is about taking back control of your debts and making your life much easier in the process.

With a debt management plan you can:

  • Reduce interest rates
  • Waive late fees
  • Lower monthly payments
debt management

What Is a Debt Management Plan?

If you are worried about your own accumulating debt, then a debt management plan could be just what you need. What is debt management? It’s about coming to an agreement with your creditors to reach an affordable solution to your financial needs.

Of course, this isn’t always easy to do. Often, a third party is brought in to negotiate with your creditors on your behalf to help. Their goal is to bridge the gap between you and your lender to find a solution that works for both parties.

How can I manage debt? With a debt management plan in place, you will have a new repayment schedule with your creditors that will be more manageable with your financial situation.

A debt management plan is often the last step before going into a Debt Agreement or declaring bankruptcy. A Debt Agreement is a legally binding agreement between you and your creditors, which if not fulfilled, can lead to bankruptcy. If you can settle your debts with a debt management plan, it is the best solution to help you in the long run.

How To Set Up A Debt Management Plan?

Now you know how can I manage debt, it’s time to learn how to set up a debt management plan.

  1. The first step is to take a look at your own financial situation. What is your income and what are your expenses? Set out a thorough budget that outlines all these details.
  2. Next, put together a list of all the lenders you owe money to, how much you owe and the interest rate.
  3. Now is your chance to work out what you can afford to pay to each lender each month. You may want to start with the debts with the highest interest and just pay them or pay an equal amount to all your debts.
  4. Once you make a decision, contact your creditors to explain your situation and the help you are looking for. Propose a plan to help you repay your debts.
  5. If your creditor agrees, then you can start making repayments according to those plans. If your creditor doesn’t agree, it might be time to bring in a third party that can negotiate for you to get the best deal possible.
manage debt

Getting The Help You Need

Finding yourself in a position of debt that you are unable to repay isn’t an ideal circumstance for anybody. Thankfully, there are options out there to help. If you are wanting to set up a debt management plan, then speak to the experts at The Australian Lending Centre today.

We can look at your individual circumstances and help put a repayment plan in place that you can afford. We will then act on your behalf to negotiate with your creditors to get the best deal possible. It’s the first step to getting yourself out of debt and in a better financial space. If you need help, pick up the phone and give us a call today.

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Debt Management News

What Does Predatory Lending Mean?

Finding yourself in financial difficulty is a horrible place to be. Feeling vulnerable and lacking hope, you might have found yourself reaching out for a loan that sounds too good to be true. Lenders are often so willing to help that they brush off your questions and concerns and chase you till you sign on the dotted line. Only once the paperwork has been done do you realise you cannot possibly repay the loan in the terms provided. You may have fallen victim to predatory lending.

What does predatory lending mean? Predatory lending is where a lender leverages the borrower’s circumstances for their own financial benefit. They do this by enticing, inducing and assisting the borrower to sign up for a loan they cannot reasonably repay. They then make money through increased sign-ups, kickbacks and high fees. Predatory lenders tend to seek out the elderly, low-income families, subprime borrowers (people with low credit scores) and those in financial distress.

Taking advantage of vulnerable clients is illegal and regulated by ASIC. Chapter 3 of the National Consumer Credit Protection Act 2009 states that: “Credit licensees must comply with the responsible lending conduct obligations”.

beware of predatory lending

What Are Some Examples Of Predatory Lending?

A lender or broker who looks at your assets more than your ability to repay a loan can be considered predatory. They are knowingly placing you in a position of financial distress. High fees leveraged for late repayments, penalty interest rates or seizure of assets can all be considered predatory. Even pushing “essential services” that are not actually required can be deemed predatory and are illegal. This includes insurances linked to credit cards.

Characteristics Of A Predatory Loan

Unsure if you are trapped in a predatory loan, or if you have potentially been offered one? What does predatory lending mean and what does it look like? Below are some key check-points to look out for.

examples of predatory lending
  • High penalties for paying a loan out early. Prohibiting you from refinancing or closing the loan, sometimes for a period of many years.
  • Inflated interest rates from brokers. Some lenders incentivise brokers to charge above the usual interest with what they call a ‘yield-spread-premium’. Ask your broker if the lender is offering this to them.
  • Adjustable interest rates that only go up. Continual rate rises that can mean you never get on top of repayments.
  • Steering and targeting. Broker or lenders who contact you to offer credit and loans, brush aside your low credit rating or try to rush and coerce you into signing.
  • Hidden charges. Unscrupulous lenders make their loans sound more appealing by downplaying or hiding fees, charges and taxes.
  • Offers to ‘flip’ your loan. Refinancing repeatedly damages your credit rating and can end up costing thousands in fees and charges.
  • Future promises. Lenders who sell you a poor loan product but promise to ‘fix’ any issues down the line.
  • Balloon payments. Large chunks of the loan that you are required to repay at intervals for the life of the loan.
predatory lending

What Does Predatory Lending Mean For You?

If you feel that you are a victim of predatory lending there are steps you can take to get help.

  1. Report the lender. Contact the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA)
  2. Refinance via a licensed broker or bank. There are a number of reputable, trusted lenders who can help to refinance your loan for you and turn your negative financial situation around. Australian Lending Centre is dedicated to finding loan products which suit our client’s individual needs.
  3. Sue the lender. In some instances, you may find there are other victims of the lender who are willing to join you in a class-action suit. Placing more pressure on the lender.  
  4. Implement the act of rescission. Whereby you can exit the contract by demonstrating it was offered under misrepresentation or concealment. 

 How To Avoid Predatory Lending

Always shop around and only deal with licensed brokers. It is also important to read reviews on lenders from current and past borrowers. Choose only a reputable lender.  You should also ensure you read your contracts thoroughly prior to signing and query anything you do not understand. Engage the help of a solicitor if necessary so that if you do not understand what does predatory lending mean, they can check and advise for you. Additionally, keep your credit score up so that you have more borrowing power.

Being an educated consumer places you in a position of power and much harder to be taken advantage of. Ultimately, if something doesn’t feel right, be confident in your right to say ‘no’ and walk away. You do not owe anything to the broker, they are working for you. 

avoid predatory lending

Know Your Rights And Shop Around

Understanding ‘what does predatory lending mean?’ prior to taking out a loan can save you from falling victim to such a loan. Learn to manage financial challenges and avoid predatory lending. If you do need a loan, even if to consolidate existing debt, only deal with a licensed professional. At the Australian Lending Centre, our commitment is to helping you. From debt consolidation, debt relief, bad credit loans and more – we find solutions to get you back on the path to financial security. We will never take advantage of your situation.

If you need support to escape a predatory loan or get your finances under control, contact the Australian Lending Centre on 1300 138 188.

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Debt Management

What Is Debt Management?

Finding yourself in a position of debt can be extremely stressful. When the bills are piling up and you are unable to make the repayments on existing loans, you enter a downward spiral further and further into debt. This is not only much harder to work your way out of, but will significantly hurt your credit score in the process, leaving it harder for you to take out any future loans. This is where debt management comes in. This article will look at ways you can get back in control of your debts and answer the question: what is debt management?

Good Debt Vs Bad Debt

While all debt entails borrowing money you don’t have from a lender, what many people don’t recognise is that there is a huge difference between good debt and bad debt.

Good debt:

Have you ever heard that old saying, “You need money to make money”. Many people borrow to get themselves ahead. Whether they are investing in a property for their future, or a business idea that they hope will take off. This type of debt is good debt. The borrower is able to make their repayments on time, and if the risk pans out, will increase their net worth in the process, leaving them better off because of this loan.

Bad debt:

This is when money is borrowed to purchase depreciating assets. For example, if you take out money for a car loan, a holiday, to get you through to your next payday, and more, this is considered a bad debt. There is no way you can earn money off these investments, and if you are unable to make the repayments, it is all too easy to spiral into debt with this.

More often than not, it is bad debt that leads to future financial issues. If you have found yourself unable to pay back your bad debt, then you might be questioning what is debt management? And how can it help you?

good vs bad debt

Getting Out Of Debt

The most important thing to do when it comes to debt management is to make a start. Any type of action is a positive one when it comes to trying to get yourself out of debt. You have to start somewhere. Take a look at where you are sitting financially and whether you are able to continue paying off your debts on time.

If you are managing to make the repayments, then your best option is to tighten up the belt buckle and continue to remain on top of this. It will reflect positively in your credit file and give you the best chance of taking out any future loans.

If you are unable to make these repayments, this is the time to look into debt management. So, what is debt management?

get out of debt

What Is Debt Management?

Debt management plan looks at your financial situation and geta you back on track. If you have multiple loans, you may consider bringing them together with a debt consolidation loan or finding better interest rates. The idea is to get you the best plan moving forward to get you back on track financially. Here are some of the strategies you might adopt:

  • Additional repayments: if you have the means, making additional repayments on your loan can help pay it off quicker and pay less interest in the long run.
  • Debt consolidation: this is the process of bringing all your existing debts into one new debt to help manage the repayments and ease the process.
  • Start with high interest: by starting with your high interest loans first and repaying these, you can then move onto the next ones and pay less interest overall.
  • Start with non-deductible debt: this is a loan that has been taken out for a bad debt mentioned above. It is a debt that won’t produce income, so it is best to get this one paid off first.

Debt management can also involve making an unofficial agreement with your creditors to pay back your debt over a set period of time. Often, if you are having troubles making the repayments, it involves lengthening the time of the loan, so you have longer to pay it back. This is something that has to be agreed upon between you and your lender and is based on individual circumstances.

debt management

Setting Up Your Debt Management Plan?

Not sure where to start? When it comes to putting in place a debt management plan, it is often best to seek professional advice. If you are looking for a debt management plan that works for your individual circumstances, then get in contact with the specialists at Australian Lending Centre today. We can look at your situation and offer the best advice based on your needs.

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Debt Consolidation Debt Management Financial Planning

10 Steps To Get Out of Debt

If you find yourself in debt, which many people have since the COVID19 epidemic, it’s important to remember you aren’t alone. Whether you have made some bad financial decisions, or things beyond your control have occurred, such as unemployment, injury or illness, there are ways you can get back on track. There are many benefits to getting yourself out of debt, such as an improved credit score and lifts in mental health, so while it may feel daunting at first, a simple few changes you can make a huge difference to your lifestyle. Here are 10 steps to get out of debt.

10 Steps to get out of Debt

1. Put your debt in perspective

The first of 10 steps to get out of debt is to look at where you currently are. Answer the following questions:

  • How much debt am I in?
  • What interest am I paying on these debts?
  • How many debts do I have?

If you can make a note and get in a clear head about where you stand, you can prepare a way forward to get on top of it.

2. Set a budget

This is the best way to oversee your finances. It takes into account how much you are spending each month and on what. Start by writing down your income, and all your fixed expenses each month. This includes insurances, medical and food, dining out and entertainment. Take this away from your income and see how much is less. If it’s less than zero, then you can clearly see you are spending more than you earn and need to make some changes. See where you can cut down. Then, allocate a certain amount to paying off your debts. If you are after a spreadsheet to note all this down, there are plenty of free options on the internet.

3. Start paying!

Start paying off from highest interest rates to lowest, this will save you money in the long run. It is referred to as ‘avalanching’. This means the debts that are costing you the most in interest will be paid off first, before tackling the next one.

4. Lower your interest rates

ext step, it is worth looking at whether you can lower your interest rates. Having high-interest rates can make it much harder to pay off the debt. The easiest way is to contact your lender, and simply ask. If you have a good history of paying off your payments, it can help you succeed.

5. Consider Debt Consolidation

If you don’t manage to lower your interest rates, take a look at whether debt consolidation could be an option for you. This is the process of taking out a single loan to pay off all your other loans. This has the advantage of getting you a better interest rate and helping you keep on track with paying off your debt. Everything is in one place and you make one payment a month – not multiple.

get out of debt

6. Pick up a side hustle

Ever considered renting out a room in your home? Perhaps you have a hidden talent that can get you some extra work on the side? Now is the time to pick up as much work as possible to pay back your debt in a timely manner.

7. Put away those credit cards

The one thing you don’t want while trying to pay off debt is to go into even more debt. Hide those credit cards so that the temptation won’t even be there. Out of sight, out of mind.

8. Sell, sell, sell

Another great way to earn some fast cash is to sell things around your home that you no longer need. You can use eBay, Gumtree or even Facebook marketplace to list your unwanted goods. This could give you a good cash injection boost to get you started.

9. Ask for help

If you have made all these changes but are still struggling, ask for help. Speak to your lender and see if you can renegotiate the terms of your debt. You may even reach out to the family for a helping hand to get you through a bad period. Just getting a boost to start you off can be all you need when it comes to getting out of debt.

10. Declare bankruptcy

A last resort that you want to avoid if possible is declaring bankruptcy. This will have a long-term impact on your credit file and can affect other areas of your life. It is worth seeking professional advice before going down this route and making sure you have exhausted all other options.

Looking for some professional advice? Speak to the experts at the Australian Lending Centre. We can help you pay off your debts and get back on track. By following these 10 steps to get out of debt, you will be able to change your lifestyle and live within your means in no time.

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Debt Management Tax Debt Loans & Relief

Debt Help – Unemployed Survival Guide

With the advent of a global pandemic sending Australia into lockdown mode, many businesses have suffered immensely. Social isolating is now the norm and businesses that were once thriving have been forced to close. This is a situation that no-one could have predicted and has left a lot of people searching for debt help.

Here is your unemployed survival guide.

I Lost My Job, Now What?

If you have found yourself without a job during this COVID-19 pandemic, you are certainly not alone.

With restrictions placed on restaurants, pubs, gyms, cafes and many other businesses taking a huge hit, they have been forced to lay off their employees. Australia’s unemployment rate rose to 5.2% in March. With Employment Minister Michaelia Cash stating that Treasury modelling shows it will spike in June at around 10%.

On top of this, figures from ANZ showed total job ads plunged 53.1 per cent in April, compared to a 10 per cent drop in March.

While the most logical solution is to go on the hunt for a new job, with fewer jobs available and more people looking for work than ever, this just isn’t an option for many. This has left many families looking for debt help. If you find yourself in this position, here are some steps you can take.

Look For Your Entitlements

The Australian Government has stepped up to help those who have lost their jobs during this time, so it is worthwhile looking at what you might be entitled to. Here are some you can look into:

The Jobseeker payment is available to those who were stood down or let go, including sole traders, self-employed, casual workers and contract workers. You have to meet the following requirements:

  • Between 22 years old and Age Pension age.
  • Income is under the test limits.
  • You meet residence rules.
  • You meet their Government’s definition of unemployed and are looking for work.
  • You’re sick or injured and are unable to do your usual work or study for a short time.

If you meet these requirements, you are entitled to anything from $565.70 to $790.10 a fortnight. Your partner’s income could also affect what you are entitled to.

Coronavirus Supplement payment: if you are eligible for the Jobseeker payment or other Human Services payments (such as Parenting Payment and others), then you will be eligible for this one too. It is a new support payment of $550 per fortnight, once again, dependant on how much you or your partner earn.

Economic Support payments: this is a one-off $750 payment for those who already receive a range of government benefits.

The idea of all these benefits is to give people debt help while we social distance and stay home to help slow the spread of COVID-19. Of course, for some people, these payments aren’t enough.

Get Debt Help

If these payments aren’t enough to help you with the cost of living and you are finding yourself in debt during this crisis, then it is time to get debt help.

Speak with lenders

The first thing to do is to speak with your lender and ask if they can offer any help. Many businesses are stepping up to support fellow Australians during this time and offering interest-free periods to stop your debt from increasing while you struggle to pay it off. You may even be able to pause or defer certain repayments. Many banks are offering relief from credit card repayments.

Look at your service providers

It is also worth calling around your service providers and seeing if they can offer any assistance. Look at cheaper options or whether accounts can be paused or suspended for the time being.

Sort your debts

If you are juggling a number of different debts, try and prioritise them and work out which one needs to be paid off first. It generally makes sense to pay off the one with the highest interest rate first and work that way. Debt Consolidation could be a good option for you. This is where all of your debts are combined into one, easy to manage payment with a lower, fixed interest rate.

Payday loans:

It may also be worth considering a payday loan to help make ends meet while all this is going on. They are short-term loans with no restrictions on what they can be used for. They do come with high fees attached to them, so it is worth weighing up whether they are right for you.

Get Debt Help Fast

If you are up to your knees in debt and don’t know how to move forward, it is time to speak to a professional and get some debt help. The experts at Australian Lending Centre will talk you through your options and give you the help you need to get back on your feet and see you through this global crisis.

Remember, these are unprecedented times that no-one could predict. If you need debt help, just know you aren’t alone.

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Debt Management Credit Card Consolidation Financial Planning Interest Rates

How is APR Calculated?

Wondering exactly what APR is and questioning how is APR calculated? We have all the answers you need to help you discover what the APR is and why it is so important when it comes to interest rates and borrowing money.

What is APR?

APR, or annual percentage rate of charge, refers to the interest rate for a whole year. Rather than looking at a monthly fee or rate charged on a loan or credit card, the number is expressed as an annual rate instead. Many people confuse APR and interest rate, but there is a clear difference between the two. Understanding this can make a huge difference when it comes to your repayments.

If you have a credit card or a mortgage, then it is highly likely you have heard this term before. But have you ever taken the time to work out what it actually means for you? While it doesn’t make much difference when it comes to paying off your credit card, it can make a huge difference to your monthly mortgage repayments. Therefore, it needs to be looked into carefully and calculated properly, especially when it comes to choosing between lenders.

While an interest rate may look good on surface level compared to other lenders, it can be deceiving depending on their APR. We show you why.

Interest Rate Vs APR

Firstly let’s take a look at the difference between an interest rate and an APR. So how exactly does APR differ from the interest rate? Put simply, the interest rate is the cost of borrowing the money. For example, if you borrow $500,000 with a 5% interest rate, this is the principal plus interest. Your interest for the year will be $25,000, or a monthly payment of $2085. Simple, right? So where does APR factor in?

APR on the other hand, includes other costs associated with borrowing money and is calculated as an annual figure. This is what makes the APR a much more effective way of determining the costs associated with a loan. These fees can include broker fees, closing costs, rebates and more. Just like the interest rate, they are often referred to as a percentage.

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How Is APR Calculated?

Let’s take a look at the example above. You have purchased a home for $500,000 and we know that the interest owed to the financial institution on top of this is $25,000 a year. But now we have to look into what other costs were incurred in this process, such as:

  • Did you pay any closing costs?
  • Did you have mortgage insurance?
  • Was there broker fees?
  • Rebates?
  • Any other costs?

These fees are added to the original loan, to give you a new loan amount. For example, if these fees amount to $5,000, then your new loan amount is $505,000. The interest rate stays the same at 5%, but a new annual payment is calculated against the new loan amount. Instead of paying $25,000 annually it is now $25,250.

So, how is the APR calculated from all of this?

You need to take the new annual payment ($25,250) and divide it by the original loan amount ($500,000). This will get you 5.05%.

In this scenario the APR is 5.05%, while the interest rate is 5%. As you can see, APR is the figure you need to pay attention to as it actually refers to the amount you will be paying back.

What Does This Mean for Loans?

When it comes to borrowing money for a big loan, such as a mortgage, many borrowers get hung up on simply comparing interest rates. The problem with this is that it does account for any of the upfront costs that are involved with the loan. This can account for a high APR. While the interest rate may have initially looked good, when you factor in the APR, it may not be the best offer out there for you.

The part most borrowers find confusing is when they come across two different lenders, offering the same interest rate with the same monthly repayments, but with different APRs. What this means is that the lender with the lower APR requires fewer upfront fees throughout the process. All in all, this will offer the better deal for you.

Having a clear idea of what an APR is and being able to answer the question how is APR calculated will make huge difference when it comes to taking out a loan. You can use this information to make more informed choices that leave you financially better off as a result.

Australian Lending Centre

Get in touch with the experts at Australian Lending Centre for professional advice about APR’s and how they are calculated. We can help you make informed decisions related to your circumstances without getting lost in the numbers. We are always here to help.

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Debt Consolidation Business Consolidation Loans Debt Management Financial Planning Short Term Loans

Coronavirus: Financial Security in a Pandemic

Financial security and pandemic. The two don’t really go hand-in-hand, do they? As if facing a global health crisis wasn’t terrifying enough, the world’s economic nosedive is hitting Australian families and individuals hard. Really hard. But as with most things in life, rest assured there will be light at the end of the tunnel. As cheesy as it sounds, we really are all in this together. Out of this strange and unwelcome period will come a brighter future for Australia and the rest of the world. So while we work on our self-isolation best practices, what are the steps we can take to achieve a sense of financial security in a pandemic?

Find out what government support applies to you

The Australian Government is currently providing financial assistance to Australians during this uncertain time. The assistance includes income support, household support and temporary early releases of superannuation. All the important details can be found here.

Be sure to also look at your state government and find out what packages and recovery efforts apply to you.

South Australia: The SA government has unveiled a $1 billion jobs stimulus package. Keep an eye on media releases and updates here.

Tasmania: The Tasmanian Liberal Government has prepared a $420 million stimulus package to support Tasmania. Keep an eye on media releases and updates here.

ACT: The ACT Government has prepared an economic support package of $137 million. Keep an eye on media releases and updates here.

Northern Territory: The Territory Labor Government’s $65 million Jobs Rescue & Recovery Plan has been introduced to keep shops open, cash flowing and Territorians working. Keep an eye on media releases and updates here.

Western Australia: The WA State Government announced a $607 million stimulus package to support WA households, pensioners and small businesses in the wake of COVID-19. Keep an eye on updates here.

Queensland: The Queensland Government has announced a $4 billion COVID-19 package to support Queenslanders’ health, jobs and businesses. Keep an eye on updates here.

Victoria: The Victorian Government has announced a $1.7 billion economic survival and jobs package to support small and medium sized businesses in Victoria. Keep an eye on updates here.

Write up a budget plan

If ever there were a time to start being conservative with your funds, now would be it. You’ll feel an alleviating sense of financial security in a pandemic if you can stick to a well-curated budget. Remember, the ever-changing economic climate brings all kinds of financial stress, so you’ll want to keep updated on what’s happening and budget around that.

Accept the current state of affairs and do what you can to work around it. Try to avoid spending as if everything is normal in the world. Evolve and adapt your spending to suit the current climate. That being said, please don’t panic buy.

Panic buying goes against the idea of budgeting for a pandemic. You might find yourself buying excess of what is necessary, being left with little funds to support other areas in need. Excessive stockpiling can also lead to price gouging, which is when the prices of certain supermarket items double or triple in price. None of us want to pay $20 for toilet roll.

Pay attention to budgetary changes

Now that you are in self-isolation, you will notice certain expenses disappearing and others rising. As you won’t be leaving the house, you will no longer be paying for petrol or for drinks or a night out. You will, however, be using electricity and water at home a lot more. Consider these variables and tailor your spending habits around them. You will need to pay close attention to what money goes where as it will be different to your routine money management system.

Carefully consider a loan

Australian Lending Centre is a leading provider of bad credit loans and consolidation loans Australia-wide. We strive to assist people who have multiple credit cards and personal loans. With the introduction of the coronavirus, we understand finances are tighter than ever. ALC can lend a helping hand. We offer a wide range of financial services and can provide a product to match your individual needs. From debt consolidation and debt management, to credit repair and low doc loans, ALC can help. Get started on your loan application here.

Look after your mental health and well-being

It may be the last on our list, but it is indisputably the most important. A healthy mental state is vital to feeling a sense of financial security in a pandemic. If you feel mentally on top of things, the finances will follow.

Avoid Fake News and Sensationalised Media

One of our top tips would be to avoid fear-inducing media if you find yourself inclined to anxiety. Although we have addressed keeping up to date with the latest pandemic news, this doesn’t mean delving deep into conspiracy theories and reading about all the tragedies. Have an understanding and be aware. Just don’t spend all your time consumed by COVID-19 news.

Stay Busy and Engaged

Try to keep yourself occupied with hobbies. Read a book. Go for a jog. Clean the house or learn a new recipe. Being homebound doesn’t have to mean being bored out of your brain. It certainly doesn’t mean sink into the couch and rotate through Netflix series’ all day.

Seek Support

Finally, seek support if you’re feeling helpless. Beyond Blue has a dedicated page on its forums to help those who are experiencing mental health depreciation due to the current global crisis. You can contact the Australian Government Department of Health on their national helpline (1800 020 080) for information on the pandemic. There will always be people you can speak to and people who can help.

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Financial Planning Debt Management

Budgeting Tips – Learn How to Manage Your Finances

There are many benefits that come with budgeting. Creating a budget is something that everyone can do. It doesn’t matter how much you earn, what expenses you have, or which stage you are at in life. They can be created specifically for your needs. In this blog, we share budgeting tips to help you to manage your finances, but first, here are some reasons you might be considering a budget:

Set and meet a savings goal

Have a big trip on the horizon? Looking into high schools for your kids? There are plenty of expenses in life that add up fast, and creating a budget is a great way to work towards them. You may even have a bigger goal in mind, such as buying your first home. Every little bit counts and budgeting will help get you closer.

Overview of your finances

You may think you are spending wisely, but often on closer inspection of where your money is going, you may discover otherwise. Often we spend blindly, thinking we are keeping track, but when we add up the numbers, it can be a shock. Creating a budget lets you see exactly where your money is going and what you are spending it on.

Improve your spending

Finally, with a budget, you can improve your spending. You don’t have to cut out the luxuries, but rather just look at cutting down in places to help you add more money to savings instead.

No matter which reason applies to you, creating a budget is a practical solution. It puts you in charge of your finances. Here are some great budgeting tips to help.

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Budgeting Tips – Manage Your Finances

Start with the Past

This may sound draining, but it really is the best way to do it. It’s best to go back about a year, so you get a full overview of all your expenses. This might include insurance and other bills that come at different stages throughout the year.

Print out your statements and run through them with different coloured highlighters. For example, use yellow for household expenses, green for car expenses and orange for entertainment. Just being able to see this at a glance will give you a good indication of where your money is going each year. And remember, a budget isn’t about cutting out bad spending. It is about being aware of where you money is going and cutting down on areas. Maybe you didn’t realise you went out so much?

Set Achievable Goals

Look at where you are and where you want to be. There is no point cutting out all entertainment expenses, just to buckle down and save. This just isn’t realistic and you will end up slipping up, which will put you back at square one. Instead, set goals you can achieve, and always allow for ‘anonymous’ expenses, such as a couple of dollars for the cake stand at school. You need a bit of leeway for these small expenses that can add up.

Open a Savings Account

Now you have a goal in mind, make sure you have a savings account set up. The most important thing when it comes to your savings account is to ensure you are earning interest on the money. Opt for an account that has a good interest return, after all this is easy money in your pocket that will give your savings a good boost.

Use cash

By using cash instead of your credit card or bank card, you will become much more aware of your spending and less likely to overspend. This is one of the best budgeting tips out there. Take out a certain amount each week and watch where it is going – don’t let yourself spend beyond this. It is so easy to tap away on a card and not even consider where your money is disappearing too.

Ring all your providers

Another one of those golden budgeting tips. This one can be time-consuming, but it is so worth it. Ring around all your providers, mobile phone, internet, insurances, etc., and look for a better deal. Often all you have to do is ask, especially if you have been with them for a while.

Stick to It

Don’t let yourself go, as bad habits will come back really quickly if you find yourself giving up. If you have the odd slip-up, that’s fine, get back on track and go again. And if you are finding it is just too hard, this may mean you need to take a look at your goals and readjust them to make them more achievable. It’s all too easy to feel like a failure if you can’t meet your goals. However, if this is the case, it is more likely that your initial goals just weren’t achievable. Budgeting apps can be useful if you are struggling to budget yourself. Money Brilliant is one of the budgeting apps available in Australia.shutterstock 1120539272 Budgeting takes hard work and perseverance, but the results speak for themselves. Use these budgeting tips to help you to manage your finances and soon you’ll be in a good position to reach your savings goals. If you need a bit of extra help managing your money, get in contact.

Categories
Debt Consolidation Debt Management Financial Fitness

Learn How To Manage Finances After Divorce

You might have been led to believe that marriage ends in ‘happily ever after’ (thanks to Disney), but the reality is that approx. 1 in 3 marriages ends in divorce. Emotional consequences aside- the financial impact of divorce can last for decades and carry on into older age, according to new research. It’s important to understand how to manage finances after divorce.

The numbers and women

According to a CII research report:

  • 34% of women in their 30s say their money wouldn’t last a month if they lost their main source of income.
  • The average man accumulates 5x the pension pot of the average woman.
  • The average divorced woman has 1/3 the pension pot of the average divorced man (£9,000 vs £30,000).
  • Most women in the bottom 40% of households by household income have no pension wealth at all.
  • Women’s household income fell by 41% following a divorce or separation after age 50, while men’s household income dropped by only 23% (GAO.GOV downloadable report).

Why such a strain on women?

46% of divorced women said they experienced financial surprises, including:

  • Being unaware of the total size of their marital debt (the primary mortgage, home equity line of credit, auto financing, credit card debt and loans).
  • Not anticipating the financial need to return to work.
  • Assuming they could keep the marital home.
  • Expecting child support would be higher or last for longer.
  • The giant cost of health care insurance.
  • Underestimating the cost of getting a divorce.
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Sadly, 47% of divorces involve children under 18 years of age (gov.au)

“Child care, medical expenses, education and extracurricular activities are typically called into question post-divorce.”

heri Atwood- Founder & CEO of SupportPay

Since almost 82% of parents with custody are women, these expenses that fall outside that base monthly payment usually land on the mothers.

Ways to manage finances after divorce

Enlist a good divorce solicitor

They can advise you and help in devising a plan in moving forwards.

Close all joint accounts

Open new accounts in your name and take your name off joint bills. Ensure that your credit record is clean.

Be aware of any joint debt

After divorce, you not only split assets 50/50 but also split any joint debt. If you suddenly find yourself juggling millions of different debts, then it might be worthwhile looking into Debt Consolidation.

Clean up your retirement accounts

Speak to a professional about dividing your superannuation accounts.

Don’t get emotionally attached to your marital home

Can you realistically afford to keep it on your own or would it be better to sell up and find something more economically suitable?

Budget smart

Be aware of your income and expenditure. Work out your current budget and plan for a financially healthy future.

Your financial support options

Whether it’s personal or business financial support you require- help is always available.

Get the support you need – financially or advisory from us.

Australian Lending Centre offers:

Speak to our team to see which option is best suited to help you.

Categories
Debt Management

Poor Habits that Lead to Debt

There are a number of poor habits that lead to debt. Have you ever wondered why some people are deeply buried in credit card debt and debt in general while others have clean credit records, despite being on the same economic level? Wealthy and poor people exist side by side and sometimes even the same paycheque and personal situations.

Of course, some people have certain advantages over the rest, especially those who have been born with a silver spoon, or those with better opportunities because of their status and connections. There are also individuals who weather financial storms despite their difficult financial situations an emerged successful because of excellent financial habits. But underlying issues that lead you into deep waster start with poor habits that lead to debt.

What are the poor habits that lead to debt?

Here are habits that can be responsible for huge credit card debt, regardless of the amount of your paycheque or personal situations.

Not using your time wisely

Do you realize the time value of money and its impact on your finances? Procrastination, staying idly and not making full use of your 24/7 body clock deprives you of huge opportunities to earn money. You don’t have to work round the clock. In fact, you can make your assets work for you. It’s not just the money-but your skills and creativity can be put to good use.

The Pareto principle states that the thing you do with 20% of your time in a day produces the biggest chunk of your wealth. While it may not apply in all situations, particularly if you are working in a 9 to 5 job, this theory could encourage you to maximize the use of your time.

For example, if you have an online business, it is important to identify your biggest customers and to devote your time in engaging them; and the people with the same demographics. Full-time employees can set a certain period of time in a day to evaluate their productivity and to evaluate their recent knowledge and skills that they can utilize for self-improvement. With less income, you may be tempted to use your credit card to meet your monthly debt repayments and personal needs.

Taking too much that you can handle

While many people thrive with multi-tasking, it can actually lower concentration and the quality of work. Less work done could mean less income. Instead of doing this, you can set a schedule for a specific task; complete it within your allotted period and proceed to the next task.

Let us say you are engaged in small business and you have been doing the books, management and overseeing the productions and marketing. If you don’t have a planner or an app that would remind you every now and then, you may find it difficult to keep up with the demands of your business. You can also hire people to do the work for you. While it may denote additional cost because you have to pay wages, consider it as additional working capital which could yield greater returns in the long run.

The same principle applies to debt; you may think that your income can shoulder the monthly repayments for your credit card debts and other existing loans. But, if your debt takes up more than 30% of your income, and you have no emergency savings fund; it may be difficult to keep up with the payments on time when accidents and other similar situations occur. And more, people who have been handling various types of debt may default on payments simply because there are multiple debts that they need to pay in a month.

Complicated payments may create poor habits that lead to debt

With so many due dates to consider, how can you possibly remember each of them and the interest rates as well as penalty charge they represent?

It is important to choose the right financing opportunity that could help you settle your dilemma on finances. Instead of using your credit cards at the same time, consider other financing options that could help you save more money in the process.

Choosing the safe side

There is nothing wrong with staying in your comfort zone. In fact, most people thrive in a place where they are most comfortable. However, there are times that you need to take a leap of faith to pursue a passion or a new business endeavour that could open windows of opportunities for growth.  It doesn’t have to be a drastic change. Sometimes, a simple adjustment is all it takes to open a new door for improvement, higher pay and a better lifestyle. A sound budgeting plan may be the key to helping you manage your expenses.

Credit card warning signs

Let’s say that you have been using your credit cards to make daily purchases because it is convenient for you and you can keep records of your spending. But, charging your daily expense on your future income may not be a very smart move because in the end, you will be paying interest on an item that you can just pay with cash. This year, it may be time to start bringing your wallet and coin purse. Bring out those loose change and you may be able to save more money shopping.

On another note, those who have been paying their bills on a cash basis can opt for automated payments. There are safety measures that you can discuss with your credit provider to ensure that all your payment transactions are safe.

Automated payments

If your habits put you in financial troubles, it may be time to change them. You are responsible for your financial success. Desire it and set a good plan of action; simply keep moving until your credit card debt and other loans are fully paid and you achieved the income level you desire.

Categories
Debt Management Financial Planning Personal Loans

Dos and Don’ts of Getting a Loan on Centrelink

It’s true that when it comes to taking out a loan, lenders will assess your earnings as a part of the application process. If you are relying on Centrelink payments, it can make it a harder process. But there are other factors involved as well. This means that depending on your situation, you’ll still be able to take out a loan if you need it.

Getting a Loan on Centrelink

Wondering what the process is and how you can go about getting a loan on Centrelink? You’re not the only one. We have set up a clear list of dos and don’ts for you to follow when it comes to getting a loan whilst receiving Centrelink payments.

Check Which Benefit You Are On

For some lenders, Centrelink benefits can count as income. This means your chances of taking out a loan can be higher. This typically doesn’t apply to all payment types. For example: Youth Allowance, Newstart and Austudy are unlikely to be accepted as part of your income. Why? Because they are temporary payments. If your circumstances change, you will no longer be eligible to claim them.

The first step is to work out what benefit you are on. Next, you should calculate how much this benefit contributes to your income. Providing this information to your lender upfront will make it quick and easy to determine what you are eligible for when it comes to taking out a loan.

Don’t Focus On One Lender

Just like taking out a regular loan, it is important to shop around. Of course, you want to do this without it affecting your credit score. The trick is to do it in the space of a couple of weeks. This way, it will only count as one hard inquiry instead of multiple.

Take a look at different interest rates on offer to ensure you are getting the best deal. You can even shop between traditional (banks) and non-traditional lenders to find what works for you. There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to taking out a loan. Therefore, it is important to do your research and shop around to get the best deal.

Do Look For Lenders That Work With Centrelink

Shopping around is important. However, it is even better if you can find lenders that state ‘Centrelink Accepted’ on their website. Of course, if you can’t find this straight up, it doesn’t automatically mean they won’t accept Government benefits as a payment. The next step is to call them up and chat directly to ask them. Many lenders will be upfront about their policies. Meaning they will communicate whether they accept Centrelink payments as a form of income when taking out a loan.

Don’t Borrow Above Your Means

Being on Centrelink payments already, you don’t want to borrow above your means. This can mean finding yourself unable to pay off the debt. It can actually end up quite expensive borrowing small amounts of money – and it won’t solve your problems. All loans come with interest, so if you are unable to pay them back in a timely manner, you will be left with increasing interest over time.

Do Look At The Types Of Loans Available

Personal loans aren’t the only types of loans available to you while you are on Centrelink. You can also look at what other loans you might qualify for. This way, you can ensure you are on the best loan for your needs.

Centrelink Advance Payment

Depending on what type of benefit you are on, you may qualify for a Centrelink advance payment. Usually these need to be repaid within six months, or they will be subtracted from the amount Centrelink pays you.

Payday Loan

Finding a lender who accepts Centrelink as an income means you are eligible for a payday loan. These are small loans that tide you over until your next payday (or Centrelink pay).

Car loan

You can also take out a car loan. Your payments are used as a security for your loan, which can offer your lower interest rates.

Don’t Limit Yourself

Just because you are receiving Centrelink, doesn’t mean you are limited in your options when it comes to taking out a loan. All it means is that you need to shop around and find the right lender for you and your needs.

Loans On Centrelink

Getting a loan on Centrelink is very possible, especially if you follow this guide of dos and don’ts. If you are looking for a lender who can help you out, check out Australian Lending Centre. With our expert advice, you will be back on your feet again in no time. Finding a loan when you are on Centrelink can be simple, as long as you know the right process involved and get the right advice.

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Debt Management Financial Fitness Tax Debt Loans & Relief

Debt Reduction: How to Stop Spending Impulsively

Debt can be annoying and stressful. Trying to enjoy life whilst juggling a whole lot of debt, can however become overwhelming. Now throw in nasty shopping addiction and your plans to get out of debt can seem practically impossible. So how do you avoid overspending whilst reducing your debt? Is it even possible?

Introducing debt reduction tips

Debt reduction is all about making mental and lifestyle changes which can affect your spending habits. For some people, this may be kicking an addiction, and for others, it may simply involve setting a budget. Regardless of your personal situation, our debt reduction tips are here to help you stay on top of your messy finances.

Don’t buy things unless you need them

Have you walked past that designer clothes store to notice a fashionable pair of sneakers? You tell yourself ‘no, no I don’t need them’. Ten minutes later you find yourself sitting down trying them on. Five minutes later you’re in $500 debt to overpay.  People who are in debt tend to purchase everything they want, regardless of whether they can actually afford it or not. This craze is very common and it is otherwise known as impulse buying.

The trick to battling impulse buying is to stop and wait. Give yourself some time to decide whether you really need it or not. The best trick to dealing with impulse buying is to question your purchase decision. Ask yourself the following questions.

  • Do I really need this?
  • Do I already have a similar item?
  • What will I use it for?
  • How much is this going to set me back?
  • Can I actually afford it?
  • What can I do with the money if I don’t buy it?

You will quickly find that when you give yourself time to stop and reflect upon your purchase decision, you will realise that it is not a need. If however, it is a matter of necessity, consider if it is the best option available.

Think of loss as an opportunity

Before you make that big-ticket purchase, consider one thing. The loss of a certain thing you didn’t need but you really wanted is an opportunity. What we mean by this is that whilst you lose out on not buying that designer pair of shoes, you have gained the opportunity to pay off your debts sooner. At the same time, you have gained the opportunity to reduce your debt. Remember, debt reduction should be your ultimate goal. The sooner you remove unwanted debt, the quicker you can get on with your life.

When you’ve settled that, you’ll think twice before paying for trinkets. It will automatically become your instinct. As a consequence, you’ll be less impulsive.

Make a monthly budget

“This month, I’ll spend x dollars on food and expenses.” If we could suggest one main debt reduction strategy, it would be budgeting. A budget is the best way to reduce your debt and develop positive long term money habits. Luckily, there are many online calculators that can help you to evaluate your debt and set an appropriate budget.

Now, by all means, we don’t want you to starve yourself, but the goal of budgeting is to plan out your finances. Assess how much money is coming in and how much is going out. From here you can determine your saving capabilities(if any) and how long it will take to pay off your debt. To do so, you must refrain from overspending. Budgeting requires strict mental discipline.

If you don’t have many places to cut from, then consider additional income. This may include side jobs such as becoming a ridesharing driver or using your skills on upwork. This will help you reduce your debt quicker.

Don’t shop without a list

When you go shopping without a clear knowledge of what you need, you’ll always end up buying the stuff you didn’t even think about in the first place. Write everything down. Assess what you need before you go to the shop down the street. It will make it easier to stick to the basics. All the debt reduction tips you’ll ever find will include this one.

Avoid online shopping

More often than not, the prices you see on the Internet for the same products that you can find in any store are considerably lower. Because of this, you start adding stuff to your cart thinking “Boy, I’m so lucky!” Unfortunately, you’re not. You’re going to spend even more than you would’ve spent at the store. Everything’s so cheap that you just got to have all of it. If your debt is therefore out of control and is a result of online shopping, stay right away.

Don’t be pressured by the end of year promotions, or the large red banner that says “Sale, 50% off everything”. This will send you down a path of uncontrollable debt. The last thing that you want is a bad credit score which can arise from failing to meet your debt obligations.

Conclusion:

Debt is painful. It’s hard to splurge on big-ticket items. Unfortunately, you are in a situation that requires lifestyle changes. Debt reduction will only benefit you in the long run. For this reason, you must avoid overspending at all costs. You’ll push the deadline further away and, at the same time, you’ll amass more penalties. Implement these simple debt management tips, and your debt will dissolve faster. If you continue buying impulsively, you’ll only hurt yourself and your family.

Categories
Debt Management Credit Card Consolidation Financial Fitness

Strategies For Getting Your Credit Cards Under Control

Plastic money, where all you have to do is swipe a card and that product or service is yours. It’s great, right? Until you receive your credit card bill and realise you don’t have the funds to pay it off. Before you know it, the interest starts to soar and your credit score takes a whack. Don’t worry, you’re one of many to have fallen into this trap! Fortunately, there are ways of getting your credit cards under control before it’s too late.

Here are six ways for getting your credit cards under control

1. Pay MORE minimum monthly repayment

Or more, if you can afford it. You have three choices when it comes to making your repayments:

  • You can pay the full amount and take advantage of the interest-free period on your card.
  • Pay more than the minimum repayment to limit the amount of interest charged.
  • You can pay just the minimum repayment. This is the least recommended option, as the interest will build up. This may lead you into more debt down the track, which is hard to get out of.

2. Lower those rates

All it takes is asking! The fastest and easiest way to ensure you get back control of your credit card is to shave off a percentage or two on your interest rates. Even a small amount can save you hundreds when it comes to paying off your debt. Call up your bank and simply ask! Your credit score is likely to play a role in whether or not this will happen, but either way, it never hurts to give it a shot.

3. Pay down your HIGHEST rate card first

This one makes sense. If you have a few different credit cards that you are owing money on and you can’t afford to pay them all off, start with the one with the highest rate. This is also known as the ‘Avalanche Strategy’. Tackle the card with the highest interest rate first, while maintaining at least the minimum repayments on the others. Once you get the first one paid off, you can work your way down to paying off the rest.

This method ensures you pay as little interest as possible while making these payments and getting your way out of debt. As you work down through your debts, the amount you can put towards repayments on the next debt increases with each cleared debt – creating an avalanche effect.

4. Budget

If you don’t have one already, now is the time to put one into place. Factor your credit card repayments into your budget, so you stay on top of them. Look at how much you are spending each month on each one and compare this to how much you earn. If you are spending more than you earn, then it is time to cut back.

If you are already in credit card debt, then add this to your budget. Plan to pay a little bit off each week, to make sure you are working to an end goal. If you are in debt, then set aside your credit card for the essentials until you have paid it off.

To get a good look at your spending patterns, check out your credit card statements. From here you can assess where to make cut backs. Utilise a free online budget planner to quickly understand where your money is going.

5. Pay off Your Smallest Balances

Depending on how many credit cards you have, you could find yourself a little overwhelmed. Start small and work your way up. This one is known as the ‘Snowball Strategy’. The idea is that you feel so much better getting one card paid off fully. This will give you the momentum to tackle the next one and then another after that.

This positive cycle continues and ‘snowballs’ until all your cards are paid off and you are back in control again. Unlike the Avalanche strategy, you could end up paying more in the long run, as you are ignoring which cards have higher interest rates and paying them off based on the amount instead.

6. Have a goal

Whether your goal is to be completely debt-free, or simply to be on top of your repayments, it is important you have this goal in place when it comes to taking back control of your credit cards. To keep yourself accountable, it can help to talk to a close friend or family member, so you stay on track and don’t find yourself too overwhelmed in the process.

Taking back control of your credit cards will have you in a healthier position for some long term goals, such as travel or taking out a mortgage. Remember, start small and build your way up again and you will soon find yourself debt free and able to stay that way. Think next time you pull out that handy little piece of plastic to pay for something.

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Refinance and Refinancing Debt Management

How Can I Pay Off My Mortgage Quicker?

A mortgage is a debt. Therefore, failure to pay on time can cause you massive problems and drive you into stress. The idea of paying off all your mortgage can be pretty unnerving. There is a need to formulate a plan on how to go about the whole repayment process. So, how can you pay off your mortgage quicker?

Having no plan means you will be less likely to live a debt-free life as you will be having issues with your lenders for failing to submit your periodic payments. If you become trapped in a bad cycle of debt and you cannot make loan payments, the banks can opt to sell your home to recover any capital. Don’t be in debt all your life, or risk losing your dream home. Instead, pay your debts off quickly and live financially free.

The following are some free and easy steps you can take pay off your mortgage quicker

Refinancing your home loan

During your financial analysis and review, you may find out that your home loan doesn’t meet your needs. In such a situation, you will need to consider refinancing your mortgage. Bargaining your current rates with your already existing mortgagees or shifting to a new lender that offers a lower interest rate may bring about an increase in savings and help cut down the duration of your principal and interest loan.

Switch to a biweekly payment

As an alternative to one monthly fee, you can submit a half-sized payment every two weeks. What I mean is that, if your average mortgage amount per month is $10000, you will pay $5000 every two weeks. The impact on your budget for this mode of payment remains the same as that of one monthly payment. The only difference is that a biweekly payment schedule will lead to an increase in the annual full-sized amount by one (13) instead of the usual 12 out of the 52 weeks of a year. The concept behind this idea is that you will be making an extra payment every year without soliciting around for the additional capital.

Make your mortgage priority

You can secure a debt-free lifestyle much sooner by using the extra cash to make supplementary payments on your mortgage. There is no sense in paying for things you don’t need

Make more recurrent payments

Since interest on mortgages is calculated daily, submitting payments more frequently may aid in reducing the interest you clear over the term of your mortgage so that sooner you are a debt-free person. Take advantage of your lenders policies as some lenders may allow you to shift from monthly payments to fortnightly repayments.

Maintain the steadiness of your repayments

Interest rates can decrease. You should keep repaying your mortgage even when the prices are higher. When the rates are lower, the excess money will come off your principal, and this money can support you pay off your mortgage quickly.

Assess the market

There is always competition in the market. In a tight market, your mortgagees will still compete for your enterprise, so you should take some time every year to do a mortgage check and find out what promotions are out there. Don’t just sit and forget about your mortgage. There is always an opportunity to save. Take it.

Dedicate any Bonuses into your mortgage

How much you pay towards your unsettled principal balance matters can play a large role in reducing your overall balance.

Over time, you might find yourself with extra funds and lack a better way to put it into use. Situations under which you can find yourself with excess funds include; a bonus from work, tax refund, and inheritance. Choosing to dedicate these funds to your mortgage payment means serious progress towards your mortgage.

 Make use of a mortgage pay off loan calculator

Loan calculator can be an excellent tool for assessing how long you have until your financial freedom. The calculator can be used for other debt types as well, and it is not just limited to how to pay off your mortgage quicker.

Focus beyond big banks

Big Banks fund and support small banks. Unlike most big banks, smaller banks are ready to compete for their customers harder.

Other than personalized services they offer, most smaller lenders offer mortgage options the big lenders don’t. These options typically include lower interest rates, flexible loan terms, higher lending ratios and lower ongoing loan rates. Above all, alternative lenders are more empathetic to your financial needs.

Consider Downsizing

Shifting from a large house to a relatively smaller one is a harsh step. Nevertheless, if you are determined to pay off your mortgage ultimately, consider selling off your large house. Use the profits gained to purchase a smaller, less expensive home and pay part of your mortgage charges.

The profits you get from selling your bigger home may allow you to pay cash for a new house ultimately. Similarly, you can decide to go for a smaller mortgage. Either way, you will have succeeded in reducing your debt. The lower your balance, the quicker you can pay.

Take Away

Paying off your mortgage quicker is usually a sensible decision. Over the mortgage term, It can save you thousands of money in interest payments. Quickly take a look at all the above steps on how to pay off your mortgage quicker and expect to be among the debt-free persons sooner.

Categories
Debt Consolidation Debt Management Financial Fitness Financial Planning

How To Save Money When Online Shopping

Online shopping has become a convenient and easy way to buy what you want when you want..  Crazy bargains, heavy discounts, fast delivery, and convenience are only some of the reasons why people are shopping online. With all these ‘crazy’ bargains we are seeing an influx of people overspending. Consumers are buying anything and everything. Now – this is not necessarily bad; but if you find yourself turning into an online shopaholic, it may be time to start thinking about how you can save money when online shopping.

Here are some of the ways to save money when online shopping

Be quick or have patience

Have you hopped on to an online retailer to see the entire page full of Sales? You quickly find a nice pair of shoes. They are reduced by 15%, oh and they only have one more in stock. Luckily it’s your size. You cannot miss out? Can you? You add the shoes to your cart and away we go.

Finding a bargain can well and truly save you money, but sometimes, you’re really just falling for digital psychology – yes this is a thing!  Rather than buying with your emotion, stop, take your time and assess whether you need the item or not. If you really do need them and they are cheaper than competitors then go ahead. If however, you wait, you may see a further discount online. This discount may come later on through an email notification so don’t forget to register for their email notifications and then wait.

Search for coupons and use them prudently

The majority of people now are aware of registering to receive the seller’s email promotions. In saying so there are still a variety of online coupon providers such as Groupon that can help you save that extra cash. Search online for online coupons and use them at your disposal. Sometimes you may even be able to combine multiple discount codes. Win-Win.

Find the right days

Most companies have conducted their research into when shoppers are most likely to purchase. It is on those days that they will offer brains to draw customers in. For example, research suggests that the best time to buy clothing online is a Monday. Shoppers may save anywhere up to 50% on pants. Using that to your own advantage can be helpful. Buying your stuff on the right day will help you save. All it takes is a little research and patience.

Showcase your loyalty

Register for loyalty reward programs if you are a frequent shopper of a particular site. Your reward points on discounts and gifts will accumulate as you purchase your products. However, avoid going overboard when purchasing products to accumulate the points. The last thing that you want to do is buy something only for the sake of accumulating points. Save them and use them when you really need to.

Utilise social media

For the quickest and easiest way to catch a bargain, make sure you follow your preferred online shopping sites on social media platforms. Press the like icon on their Facebook page, start following influencers on Instagram and get on board their Twitter page. This is the easiest and greatest way to find out when products are on special. There are always giveaways and discount codes that get are available online.

Avoid overpaying on shipping

Thousands of companies allow you to jump the shipping fee if you buy goods worth a certain amount. Rather than making single purchases, consider creating a list of stuff that you need and order then all at once. When shopping online, look for websites that offer free shipping and whatever you do stay away from express shipping – unless you really need to.

Try to outwit dynamic pricing

A smart way to save money when online shopping is to take advantage of dynamic pricing. Dynamic prices can be defined as a fluctuating price that is shown to consumers depending on various factors.  These factors can include location, spending habits, current demand, and browsing history.

For example, if you’re shopping for an airline ticket, you may notice the price will change. You may have paid $500 for your first flight but when you check back on a different browser or your friend’s phone, the price has increased or decreased. There are two ways in which you can outwit the dynamic pricing.

  • Clear browsing history and cookies. This will make you appear like a new client on the site
  • Sign out all your account and use incognito mode to browse anonymously

Final word on online shopping

Use these tips to save some cash on all online purchases you make.  That can be via discounts, cash-back sites, smart tactics, shopping vouchers, and coupons. Above all avoid using buy now pay later services such as Afterpay. These services can lead you to a pit of debt.

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Debt Management Financial Fitness

Debt Relief Tips For Smart Borrowers

Are your finances stuck in a rut? Are you wondering how are you ever going to get yourself out of this frustrating financial state? Fortunately, there are debt relief strategies that can help you get your finances in order and get you back on the road to financial freedom.

Debt relief tips to stay ahead

Take a day off to clear your head

Sometimes it can just get all too much. We are only human. A clouded mind won’t help you make smart financial decisions. Take some time off to relax. Find a park, a waterfall, cafe or your happy place. Spend some time clearing your mind. Log out of Facebook, put your phone on aeroplane mode and whatever you do; don’t look at your bank account!

Reflection can help to clear your mind and allow you to rethink about your finances in a more positive light. Take a notepad and write down your thoughts about debt. Evaluate your financial decisions and create a list of short term and long term goals. Whilst it may seem difficult to take time off, especially in a tough financial state; it may actually do you the world of good.  It can also help you gain a realistic perspective of your current financial concerns and fears.

Write down your assets, liabilities, and other pressing concerns surrounding your finances

A great debt relief tip is to document your financial state. If you are married or living with a partner, writing down all your financial issues can help you talk about sensitive financial issues without getting into a lengthy argument. Prepare the bills; write them down one by one-including their interests, due dates, late charges and other matters that need attention. Then, create a budget together-or propose one if the other spouse or partner is not so into budgeting. Exchange opinions on the matter and work on a budget that would fit both of your lifestyle and financial goals. Budgeting tools are available online. They help you keep track of your finances and better manage your cash flow.

Evaluate your financial plans

How do you want to live? It’s a no brainer that no one wants to live from paycheck to paycheck or end up in a multitude pile of debt. That’s why debt relief solutions are so tempting for borrowers. But before you seek debt relief, do some brainstorming to get a clearer perspective of what you want to achieve in life. Make specific plans for reaching your goals.

Look for alternative ways of paying off your debt

In theory, the answer to debt relief is pretty straightforward. The more money you put towards your debt, the quicker you will pay it off. Whilst budgeting can help you pay off your debt more effectively; you need to have the cash flow to pay it off. In today’s tech-driven society, it has never been so easy to make an additional income.

With services such as Uber Eats, Airtasker, Gumtree, and eBay; anyone can make extra cash. You can deliver food via Uber eats, build a flatpack from IKEA for someone or sell your PlayStation on gumtree for cash. Now, this is by no means the “Easy” way out. You need to be determined and motivated to work hard. The extra cash, however, can be extremely useful in quickly relieving your debt.

Stop creating more debt

Whilst this debt relief strategy won’t necessarily get you out of debt, it will ensure that you are not piling on more debt. Adding on more debt to your existing debt will only make you worse off. So if you are tempted to add another credit card to help pay off your bills; don’t! Rather than securing more credit, freeze your card or cut it up.

Compare debt relief solutions and choose one that best suits your financial situation

Debt relief solutions may assist in giving you that extra boost to get things rolling. Alternative lending agencies such as the Australian Lending Centre offers a variety of debt relief options. These debt relief options include;

Debt consolidation

You can combine all your existing loans into one big loan. This way, you can lower the interest rates; get affordable terms and easy-to-manage monthly repayment plan.

Mortgage Refinancing

Repay your current home loan using new or second mortgage to enjoy lower interest rates, a favorable term, or a lower monthly payment.

Debt Agreement

Try negotiating with your creditors to reduce your debts. Who knows? Maybe they can forgive some of the penalties to make your payment manageable. ALC also negotiates a favourable agreement with your creditors or loan providers to reduce your debt or make your payment requirement more affordable so you can quickly repay your debts.

Credit card debt relief

Consolidate credit card debts to save on penalties and interest rates. ALC’s credit card relief program allows you to pay off high-interest credit card debts and transfer the loan amount to another low-interest loan or credit card.

Debt relief is achievable. You need to be determined to get your finances in check. Fortunately for you, there are a plethora of services that are available at your disposal. With smart budgeting, determination and a clear mind you can quickly regain control of your finances.

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News Debt Consolidation Debt Management Financial Fitness Financial Planning

Fast Loans and the Fastest Ways to Repay Them

When you need cold cash now, fast loans can be your best bet. Fast loans are quick and easy to obtain. Lenders can process loan applications within 24 hours meaning you can have your funds in your account overnight.

Whilst fast loans may be your saving grace, how can you repay your loan back quickly?

Here are some tips for paying back your loan faster

1. Pay more

If you can afford it, put in larger payments each month to pay off the principal more quickly. For example, $2500 fast loan with 6.8 % interest with a 10-year payback period would cost $28.8 a month. Making $70 payment on a monthly basis instead of $28.8 enables you to repay the fast loan in just over 36 months. By paying the principal more quickly, you will also pay for less on interest.

2. Make additional payments

The less you owe, the less interest that you will be charged. If you are able to budget effectively; you may be able to make additional payments to your fast loan.

3. Create a plan to pare your fast loans

Know exactly when your fast loans will end. Next, create a goal to pay it off within a specific period of time, commit to it and pay it according to the repayment plan. Make it a routine to pay it off monthly. If you’re facing difficulty in coming up with the monthly payments, create a budget and cut back on your expenses. This way, you can lift your debt obligations off your shoulder faster than ever.

4. Automate savings

Automatically transferring money into alternative accounts is a great way of saving that extra cash. Rather than spending money on trivial things such as movie tickets, or that unhealthy meal; automatic payments can help you set aside that extra cash to pay off your debt.  Make sure that you will only use that account for paying back your fast loans and other types of debt. This will require sacrifice in certain areas, but it will ensure that you are one step closer towards financial freedom.

With the growing wave of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Litecoin; some experts have suggested investing your extra savings into crypto. This is an extremely volatile and unpredictable form of investment that we do not recommend. Many experts compare cryptocurrency as a form of gambling. Whilst, it may seem as though there are immediate increases in profits; you may lose all your hard-earned savings in a second.

Hide your credit card in a safe place

Don’t be a victim of credit card theft. With easy access to your credit cards via pay pass; strangers who have access to a lost credit card can easily tap on purchases less than $100. Keep your credit card securely in your wallet. If you lend your card to friends or family, make sure you keep track of any transactions online.

Keep your phone in your pocket. 

The same rule applies to your mobile phone. With the rise of Apple Pay, you can purchase your transactions through your mobile phone. Make sure that you keep your phone locked with a passcode so that strangers cannot make any payments without facial recognition or a passcode.

5. Close some credit cards

Having them on your wallet may tempt you to spend more. Leave only the low-interest credit cards for your urgent needs.

6. Consolidate your debts

One of the best ways of ensuring that you continue to pay off your loan quickly is to consolidate your debts into one neat and tidy bundle. This will also protect you against the rising interest rates across different loans. This will benefit you in the long run; whilst making it easier to manage your debts.

7. Be proactive by increasing your income

Earning cash while dealing with your debts is a good way to stay proactive about overcoming debts. You don’t only generate wealth to pay for your loans; you also build your nest egg. If you can put away $100 every month out of your income, that would be $1,200 annual savings.

At the Australian Lending Centre, we can help you avail of our easy-to-pay fast loans and our debt management plans. We can help you strengthen your ability to repay your loans and live a financially secure life. It takes discipline and planning, but you can surely do it.

Contact Australian Lending Centre to get back on track. 

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Debt Management

How to Successfully Get Out of Fast Loans

Fast loans are cool. You just apply online and get the money in a really short time. However, it’s been proved that these loans can get you in all sorts of trouble due to – exactly – their fast nature, in the sense that they have to be repaid in record time. This could prove to be difficult to do since their interest rates are exorbitant. You should be familiar with how to get out of fast loans before you apply for any. And don’t even think that the solution to this is to repay a loan by getting another one.

A Couple of Solutions

Consolidate the loans

Dealing with multiple fast loans is next to impossible, all the more so when each of them has a different interest rate. If you’re in this unfortunate position, debt consolidation is your best shot at getting out of those loans. When you consolidate these loans, you roll them into just one. Needless to say, it’ll be so much easier to repay just one loan than multiple ones. Debt consolidation could also reduce the overall interest rate on the new loan, so there’s one more reason to try this out.

Get a better job

The more income you have, the easier it will be to repay your loans. This is obviously easier said than done, but it certainly wouldn’t hurt to attempt to do it. The excess money you’re left with after paying for your expenses can be used for making some larger repayments. Thus, you’ll get out the debt quicker. Before you do this, make sure that you can change jobs mid-debt. There are certain lenders who frown upon this (for reasons best known to themselves). If it’s possible, however, don’t even think twice.

Stop getting other fast loans

We shouldn’t even need to say this, but we ought to, since many people go into a debt spiral unconsciously. If you keep on borrowing money, you’ll never get out of debt. Before you know it, you’ll have to consolidate the debt or just sink lower and lower. This is by far the simplest way of getting out of fast loans. Just stay away from them. If you need more money, ask your family or friends for help, but don’t get another loan.

Put in the extra hours

If possible, ask your employer whether or not you could work extra shifts, just until you’ve accumulated enough money to pay up those fast loans that nibble at your sleep and wallet.  Another thing you should consider is getting a part-time job. Any extra money is more than welcome, especially when it’s in an amount that allows you to pay your debt. Yes, you’ll be exhausted and will probably have bloodshot eyes for a while, but it’s totally worth it.

Embrace frugality

Start cooking instead of eating at fancy restaurants. Stop watching TV for hours on end and read a book. Consider buying in bulk and using food coupons for that. This should be a last-resort type of solution that you should use only when it’s impossible to get a part-time job or fire on all cylinders at the job you have currently. Frugality isn’t half bad. In fact, you might stay frugal for the rest of your life after seeing the perks it has to offer.

Don’t waste money on useless things

When you go down to the mall, everything looks amazing instantaneously. However, you don’t actually need 80% of those things. Use the money wisely for extra payments. All those shiny things will be there after you’re out of debt, too. Don’t toy around with your fast loans. They tend to have a snowballing effect and you can easily end up in a situation where it will be impossible for you to get out of debt. A lot of people waste huge sums of money on all sorts of things and wonder why they can’t get out of debt. Don’t be one of those. Get rid of your debt and afterwards, you can revel as much as you want. Until then, though, put your money to good use.

Fast loans are among the most-taken loans in banking. No one can say that they’re not efficient at what they’re supposed to do, but they’re quite dangerous and one needs a thorough understanding of how they work in order to stay safe. Australian Lending Centre can answer your questions in regards to this type of loan, as well as provide some of the best offers you can find. No matter what problem you have, they will be more than happy to assist you with it.

And as a parting note: stop taking more loans if you’re already sinking in debt. That’s naturally not the way to get rid of loans.

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Bad Credit Loans Debt Management Financial Fitness No Credit Check Loans

How Do I Fix My Credit Score?

A bad credit report can cost you thousands of dollars in interests, penalties and fees and many people have asked us “how do I fix my credit score?”. It may also block you from getting a promotion or possibly from getting a promotion or the best deals for a dream car. Here are tips to answer your question.

Request for free copies of your credit file 

…from the major credit reporting bureaus in the country. It is important to check your file if you want to start repairing your credit score.

Examine your files to know exactly the areas that you need to work on. For example, if you have a terrible credit history, it will be helpful if you can check which accounts you have missed paying, and when you started doing so. If you have done poorly because you always maxed out your credit cards, it may be time to refer to those accounts so you will know which card to stop using for the moment. At the same time, it would also help you check whether you have defaults on old accounts so you can settle them as soon as you can.

Dispute credit errors

It is your right as a consumer to get correct credit report. The law allows you to dispute errors by sending a dispute letter to the credit bureau that listed inaccurate entries.

Remember that errors are costly. They can seriously hurt your credit score and bring it down by over a hundred points. What’s worst, you may not qualify for low interest loans simply because of data entry errors or failure on the part of the creditor to update your credit information. It is also a good opportunity for you to correct wrong information that indicates identity theft or credit card fraud.

Minimise your credit card balances

Don’t go beyond 30 percent of your credit limit. Pay all your balances for the month, and when you use a card, make sure that you keep those card balances low to boost your score. If you are having a hard time in paying multiple credit card balances, you can get a personal loan to consolidate them—not only to boost your score but to save money on interests. It is also easier to remember repayment schedule because you only have one lender to think of, so your chances of missing payment is very low.

Lower your utilisation rate

It is not enough that you pay balances in full each month. If you have a higher utilization ratio than 30%, they will still add weight to your monthly balances. One of the best ways to deal with it is to make sure that you make multiple payments throughout the month, to lower your balance. But, not all credit card providers allow this. So, it is important to stick to your credit limit at all times.

Will paying nuisance credit card balances fix my credit score?

Do you have small balances on a number of credit cards and you haven’t paid them yet?

If you want to boost your score, eliminate all the balances on your cards. Instead of charging $50 on credit card A and another  $50 on credit card B, why don’t you just charge them all in one card with a low interest rate, and pay it all off each month?

Don’t get old accounts off your credit report

True, you want to get rid of negative items because they are bad for your report. But, your score will improve when the oldest paid account remains there. The old debt on your credit report like a mortgage or car loan is not bad, so don’t be in a hurry to get it removed from your file the minute you get your debt paid off.

Most of the negative items are really bad for your credit score. But, they just disappear from your credit file after seven years so don’t argue to get your old paid accounts eliminated from your file. Even if it showed that you missed a lot of payments—just keep them there. At least, you were able to show that you managed to repay after all.

Then of course, there are good debts. A good debt is the account that you’ve handled well and paid on time. When it appears on your file—your score will be better simply because you have a long history of good debt. Lenders will also look at your application favorably knowing that you have been a responsible borrower for a long time.

How do I fix my credit score when I have good and bad debts?

In a nutshell, leave your old debts alone, pay all your balances. Don’t close accounts, especially those where you had solid repayment record—because it will eventually boost your score and increase your chances of getting favorable loans. For a shortcut to fix credit history, contact Clean Credit.

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Debt Management

Debt Agreements FAQ

What are the basic facts about the debt agreement that every borrower need to know? A debt agreement is one of the ways for the creditor to recoup some of their losses when the debtor is not able to pay them back in full and when it is difficult to collect on the debtor’s outstanding loan. The creditor and the debtor put new payment terms in writing, to allow the debtors to at least make partial repayments. Read our debt agreements FAQ and learn more about debt agreements.

When do I have to enter into a debt settlement agreement?

It is applicable when you owe a lender an amount of money and you are not able to pay it back in full. You need to document the new terms of the loan whenever you and your creditor agree to settle the debt.

Why do creditors settle for debt agreement?

By entering into an agreement, the creditors no longer have to waste time chasing you down. Instead, both of you reach an agreement on how much you can pay them.

What are the contents of a debt settlement?

The agreement contains the following:

  • How you will make payment
  • A statement that in case you fail to make timely payment, the total amount you owe becomes due.
  • The date by which payment should be made
  • The new debt settlement amount you agree to pay
  • The original amount you owed
  • You can also add other terms such as liability clauses and other things both of you would like to include.

Why do banks frown upon applications from borrowers in debt agreements?

The major banks may not approve a loan from someone who is under a debt agreement because they are very cautious when lending money to someone who has a bad credit history. They don’t want to put the company at risk in approving a loan for a borrower who cannot make timely payments.

Can I refinance a loan when I am still bound by a debt agreement?

Specialist non bank lenders like Australian Lending Centre allow borrowers like you who are still in a debt agreement to refinance your current mortgage so you can pay your agreement in full. If you have been in agreement for a year, but you made updated repayments, you might be able to borrow up to 70-80% of the value of your property. However, it is important to arrange for a pre-qualifying assessment to ensure that you have a realistic calculation of your home equity.

What are the benefits of entering into a debt agreement/settlement?

If you have limited financial resources and your situation does not allow you to pay back your debts in full, you can enter into this agreement. By doing so, you can avoid going bankrupt—which would have a terrible impact on your credit rating. It also helps you overcome difficult financial situations, by giving you some extra money to settle your debts and to pay for your immediate needs.

Other benefits of debt agreements include freezing the interest accruing on your debt, and paying a single monthly repayment instead of dealing with multiple repayments.  If you have debt agreement administrator, he or she handles all the communication with your creditors, not you. That means lesser pressure on your part. Debt Agreements are appropriate for applicants who are at the verge of bankruptcy. It can help you avoid the major consequences like having a bad credit score that could result in countless rejections of credit applications. Bankruptcy must always be the last option. So, one of the effective alternatives a struggling borrower should consider is a debt agreement.

Is there an alternative to debt settlement?

If you don’t want your future creditors to know that you are struggling financially, to the extent that you entered into an agreement to repay your debts, try debt consolidation. It can help you negotiate payment arrangement with your creditors and it is definitely a practical alternative to bankruptcy.

Final thoughts

A debt agreement is a contract driven by the desire of both parties to settle the debts. The lender wants to get back the money while the debtor wants to pay it off.

Take a good look at the content of the debt agreement. It controls and directs the borrower on how to pay back the loan and how much to pay. But, if you don’t want to have a record of debt agreement on your credit file, you can simply take out a second mortgage or a personal loan, or any other affordable loan product to pay off the debts.

What is important is that you would satisfy the full amount of your loan, and at the same time enjoy an affordable and convenient repayment for the new loan.

When you have finally settled your debts, try to practice good financial habits. Pay your debts on time, spend less and try to grow your money either through investments or additional source of income. This way, you wouldn’t have to face the same dilemma of signing debt agreements anymore.

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Debt Management

How to Make Smart Money Decisions when you have Private Funding

How do you make smart money decisions when you have access to private funding? While you cannot avoid making mistakes when handling your money all the time, the goal is to limit these mistakes in order to avoid huge money losses. The key is earning profit to cover the loss.

Here are some of the biggest culprits that ruin finances and how you can avoid them:

Smart Money Monthly amortisation

How much do you spend each month on your mortgage? What about the instalment on personal loans or business loans, or both? Consumer debts are also on the rise, as more and more people buy furniture and household items on credit. With the excessive interest rates that many lenders add on credits, it is not impossible even for high-income professionals to fully swarm in debt. Amortisation can damage your finances especially if you have various debts to pay, and you miss the due dates. Interest rates could pile up, additional fees could accumulate and you may end up in a cycle of debt.

Smart money means being hard on debt

If you feel comfortable with living in debt and lost your focus on making smart financial decisions—perhaps it is time to adjust your budget and lifestyle choices to save more and earn more.

It’s because it doesn’t make any sense to add debts simply because your monthly income fits the bill. For example, will you get a new mobile phone plan because you can afford to pay monthly? The same thing applies to cars, furniture, clothes and other items. While the monthly payment for the private funding may seem comfortable, the real cost of the item you bought on credit is not.

Overlooking the APR

How many individuals were actually conned into the instalment process simply because they ignored the annual percentage rate? This year, take time to discuss the APR with the loan officer before you sign in your future income. While you can expect to pay more interest than the APR, especially if you miss payments, you will find out the true cost of the loan if you know the interest rate and the amount that it represents. And, don’t forget the compounding of interests.

Here are other practical tips to save your future unearned dollars from going down the brink of debt:

1. Consider your long-term financial goals when choosing a loan product

Will you compromise your future unearned dollars in interest payments to pay for a certain expense today?

2. Current earnings and future expectations when making financial decisions

Compounding interests can ruin your future wealth accumulation strategies. It is also impossible to reach financial independence when there is no concrete plan to deal with future debts.

The harsh reality is that, regardless of the amount of savings you have today, unpaid debts compound overtime. As your losses are compounding, your future income will also keep on decreasing. So, you have a choice., you can opt for debt consolidation to pay off high-interest debts and use the free money to earn interest casino luck., Or, you can pay interests as long as you want, losing more money in the process.

3. Understand how money works

Money is a tool and the best way to use it is to grow a portion of it while you spend for your needs and wants. Would you rather compound losses than earn profits?

If you get into debt, you will have to pay interest. The longer you pay it, the lesser chance you have to gain financial independence soon. Or, do you want to earn interest on your borrowed money? One way of doing this is to consolidate your loans to save money on consumer debts and other existing loans. With lesser interest rate and one convenient payment, you will have extra money to invest into something lucrative.

Become Financially Literate

As we get older it will be wise to make our own journey to financial literacy. While self-discovery sounds practical, there is nothing wrong with learning from the experts. You can attend a home-buying seminar—even when you have no intention of buying a home yet. Perhaps you can use the knowledge when preparing your taxes or house flipping, not only to sell but to add value to your current property.  You will also learn more about managing your finances by meeting with qualified financial planners; becoming a member of a credit union in your area and simply doing your own research about your retirement investment options.

The first step to financial independence lies in your palms. It is up to you to make the decision to grow your money, reduce your debts and use every financial resource like private funding as you walk on the pathway to financial independence.

Categories
Debt Consolidation Debt Management

Is Debt Consolidation better than Bankruptcy?

When you have a lot of debts with different interest rates, the first thing you will think of is debt consolidation. However, there are certain situations when debt consolidation doesn’t make the cut and other options seem more feasible. Is bankruptcy one of them?

We will compare two financial services – debt consolidation and bankruptcy – and we will see which one is better for your situation. Note that before you make any request for these types of financial services, you will need to contact an expert to get an idea of what to expect. He/she will also tell you if it is a good idea.

Debt Consolidation

Debt consolidation is a great tool you can use to save money and leave your credit rating unaffected. Debt consolidation will take all your debt payments and transform them into one payment. The idea behind this method is to make the monthly payment and the interest rate lower. You can consolidate your debts through a secured or an unsecured loan. This service requires a certain fee but in the end, you might save more money than before, and you will regain control over your finances.

Here are the pros of Debt Consolidation:

  • Your credit rating and reputation are protected. Your credit score won’t be affected, and you won’t be bankrupt, meaning that your financial status won’t be made public. Bankruptcy records are easy to find and view, and this kind of reputation can affect your future financial endeavours.
  • You can simplify your debts. This means that you will focus on one payment with one interest rate, but you will also get to pay every debt in one go. In other words, you will no longer have to worry about missing a payment or paying it later than usual and suffering the penalties.
  • Debt consolidation will also let you keep your credit cards, unlike other services.

Cons of Debt Consolidation:

While debt consolidation is an excellent method of regaining control over your debts and economy, you could end up paying more in hidden fees, and you might even lose the property. Here are some things to consider:

  • Hidden costs: Here is a thing that many people don’t take into consideration – the loan term. When you apply for debt consolidation, you will pay less every month and have a lower interest rate, but the loan term will be increased. If you stay in debt for an extended period, you may end up losing more money in the long run.
  • Losing property: If you default on your loan, you can lose your car or even your house. Depending on the agreement you signed with your lender, if you default on your consolidation loan, you might end up losing a lot more than just money.

Bankruptcy

Though bankruptcy sounds scary, it isn’t the end of the world. You can eliminate certain debts when filing for bankruptcy. Here are a couple of things to consider when filing for bankruptcy:

  • When you file for bankruptcy, the creditors cannot harass you or take legal action against you. That means that you also are protected against foreclosures or repossessions.
  • Back to square one: Bankruptcy will eliminate most of your debts, and you can get a fresh start. Depending on your financial situation, you can even keep your car and home and pay them at a reduced rate.

The Negative Part about Bankruptcy

Like any other financial service, bankruptcy has its negative factors that you need to consider before applying for it. Here are a couple of things you should check:

  • Credit rating: Your credit rating will be lowered depending on the type of bankruptcy you apply for and your situation. Your credit report will show the bankruptcy anywhere from seven to ten years. Of course, you may already have bad credit seeing that you owe a lot of money and you are bankrupt because of it.
  • You can have a fresh start once you receive your bankruptcy discharge, but until then, you will have a hard time with lenders and other financial institutions.
  • Your reputation: Bankruptcy can be easily discovered by your employer or people who are associated with you, business-wise.
  • Financial sacrifices: You will have to sell your possessions if you want to be eligible for bankruptcy.

In the End

So, is debt consolidation better than bankruptcy? It really depends on your situation and what you want to achieve.  If you want to learn more about the benefits of debt consolidation call us on 1300 138 188 or visit the Australian Lending Centre for expert advice.

Categories
Bad Credit Loans Business Loans Debt Consolidation Debt Management

Should I Get Cash Now With Bad Credit?

Over the years of advising young entrepreneurs in debt, I realised that there is one thing that is stopping them from achieving their financial goals – debt mismanagement. A lot of people think that for you to build your business you need to get more debts, despite having bad credit. Others also believe that getting into debt puts their business at risk of going bankrupt. So, how would you know if it is wise to get cash now with bad credit or not?

Here is a fact. Debt is simply a tool to build your business or to ruin it. More debts won’t make you bankrupt. Not knowing how to handle your debts would.

The scary truth of having bad credit is that it reveals your inability to handle your financial obligations. If you are having problems with debt management, more debts will only amplify your problem. But, does it mean that we shouldn’t get a loan now with bad credit? The answer is a very loud–NO. Getting a cash loan can be your only way out – but you have to learn first on how to manage your debt wisely.

Basics of debt management

Depending on where you are currently in debt, here are some tips to leverage cash with a bad credit loan.

Acknowledge your debt problem

It is impossible to create a solution for a nonexistent problem. If you don’t see a bad credit score as an issue, then you may not be so adept in finding ways to address it.

Trace the causes of your bad credit score

Request for a copy of your credit score to check which of your existing debts were left unpaid, delinquent and if there are debts which do not belong to you.

Create a budget

Before you decide on the loan amount, calculate the actual amount of money you need not only to settle your outstanding debts but to meet your existing needs as well. If you will use all of your money to pay your bills without allotting something for a new source of income-how can you pay the loan back? Downsizing and making other lifestyle changes may not be enough. It is also important to increase your cash flow either through creating a passive income or investing in a business.

How will the cash loan impact your current financial state? Do you have a stable stream of income or is it at high risk as well? Understanding the potential risks facing your wallet on a short and long-term basis is important in determining the amount of loan you need to improve your finances. Once you’ve mapped out the threats to your financial stability, that’s the time you can create a concrete debt management plan.

Create self-satisfying goals

Money is not a very attractive goal. But, it is surely a powerful and persuasive tool to reach your goals in life. If you will only work to pay down debts, you may not be too eager to invest and improve your way to get there. However, if you get cash now with bad credit not only to meet your needs but to reward yourself with a financially stable life, you’ll surely smile on your way to financial freedom.

Learn more about cash now with bad credit by keeping in touch with the friendly staff at Australian Lending Centre.

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Debt Management

The Wrong Ways to Pay Off Your Debt

Being in debt can be stressful, no one denies that. And the pressure can place you in a range of challenging positions, forcing you to cave in and make the wrong financial decisions. Embracing the right ways to pay off your debt is more than mandatory.

But how do you know which are those? Well, you must get acquainted with the practices that should be avoided, and this is what we’re going to discuss in today’s article. Keep on reading to discover the wrong ways to pay off your debt.

Consolidate with a high-interest loan

Debt consolidation makes sense when the financing solution provided by the lender is actually favourable. If the loan terms are convenient for your financial situation, you should go for it. Nonetheless, choosing debt consolidation for the wrong reason and failing to analyse the implications of the term will do you more harm than good.

In the case in which the only loan you can obtain has an interest rate that is higher than your credit card debt, you should leave it aside.

At first, you may believe that your monthly repayments appear lower with debt settlement. Nonetheless, that is only because the loan has an extended timeframe. If you were to calculate the interest you’d end up paying during the life span of the loan, you might come to realise that such a solution is not the best. So, this is definitely one of the wrong ways to pay off your debt.

Misusing your home equity loan

The second on our list of one of the worst ways to pay off your debt: choosing a home equity loan. Even though you may assume that this could be the answer to all your problems, this is not always the case. Of course, there are many situations in which this option actually works. As always, everything depends on each person’s financial conditions.

However, if you’re struggling with high-interest credit card debt, you should pinpoint the root of the problem. For example, your debt situation might be a result of reckless spending and poor money management skills. If you don’t aim at solving the problem from its root, you are prone to end up in this exact scenario in a year or two. So, it goes without saying that a home equity loan won’t work as long as you don’t fix the underlying issue. In the case in which the loan ends up being unaffordable, you might lose your home as well.

Choosing the support of a debt settlement company

Accepting the guidance of a debt settlement company is, without a doubt, one of the most unfavourable ways to pay off your debt. As it is expected, these kinds of businesses advertise as being the solution to everybody’s money related problems. Nonetheless, after you manage to settle your debts, by paying significantly less than you owed, your credit rating is terrible, and you’re back where you started. Not to mention that we’re talking about a lengthy process. Even if your attempt is successful, you’ll have to work on rebuilding your credit score for years.

So, try to stay away from the methods mentioned above. There are other ways to pay off your debt without affecting your credit score in the process. Speak with a financial expert like Australian Lending Centre who offers free consultations on paying off debts and managing people’s finances.Save

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Debt Management

What Keeps You In Debt and how to avoid it

We know that many Australians struggle with debt and that’s why in this article we will present some tips on how to avoid debt In the first place. If it’s too late, then don’t worry. There are also ways to clear the debt. So read on and reach a better financial position.

To avoid debt, understand what you might be doing wrong

Not monitoring your money

When it comes to tips to clear your debt, there is nothing more crucial than observing the amount of money you get and the amount you spend. This is the first things you should know by now. Make the necessary calculations and find out what is your monthly income (if you have multiple sources), what creditor you need to pay and how much you save.

With your saved money, you can pay your debt. Don’t waste your time and money on unimportant things because your debts can quickly spiral out of control. Financial problems can affect your overall lifestyle, and your health and your income might not cut it in the end.

Don’t end up having a garage sale with half of your household on crazy discounts.

Not respecting your budget

Don’t buy things that are out of your budget. Stick with your income and use it as a reference factor whenever you have to buy something. Don’t spend your money like there’s no tomorrow because one day you will have to think about that “tomorrow.” That’s when the “fun” will begin.

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Not having any savings

You know when some people start saving? It’s when they encounter their first emergency and have little to no money. Sure, they might borrow from someone, apply for a loan or even sell something, but that may prove to be inconvenient in the long run.

Sylvester Stallone sold his dog when he had no money. When he finally solved his problem, he found the new owner of his dog and bought it back for 15,000 dollars. All of that could’ve been avoided if he had some money saved.

So, here is a tip: start saving when you get your first income, not your first emergency.

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  • Denying that you have money related problem

Here is one of the best tips to clear your debt: stop acting as you have no trouble with money. Stop avoiding paying your debts, stop gambling or being a shopaholic. These things will not only devastate you financially but will also ruin your life.

No money management skills

If you can’t manage your money, talk to an expert. If you have a partner, ask him or her to help you with your money. It’s better to start learning than to keep making the same mistake over and over again.

These are the main tips to avoid debt. You can also clear debt through services such as Debt Consolidation and Debt Agreements. Perhaps you just need a helping hand, and therefore – Debt Management is more suited to you. Whatever it is, The Australian Lending Centre can offer you professional help.

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Debt Management

Tips for Erasing Debt

Feeling discouraged and overwhelmed by debt is a feeling that many Australians experience. And things don’t get by any chance easier when you want to make ends meet, and your income is limited. Unfortunately, there’s always the temptation of agreeing to high-interest loans, assuming that it’s a temporary solution. But, in the long term, making rushed financial decisions will jeopardise your chances of accumulating savings. So, if your question is how to erase debt, keep on reading.

Prioritise your payment plan

Considering that you have limited income, you should start by prioritising your expenses. Bear in mind that necessities such as utilities, unpaid federal taxes, student loans and others should be in your focus. As for credit card debt, this is a common concern for many Aussies as well.

First of all, target the card that has the highest interest, and focus on that if your debt enables you. But, most importantly, you should start budgeting and distinguishing between urgent debt and the debt that can wait.

Consider Debt Negotiation

Our next tip on how to erase debt is to embrace debt negotiation. Of course, you know how much you owe your creditors. But it wouldn’t kill you to try discussing with them about lowering the interest rate. Many times, lenders are more than willing to negotiate; it’s up to you to try.

Factor in debt consolidation

Taking on debt consolidation can be the right strategy if you have multiple credit cards and loan bills that confuse you. Instead of having numerous bills and payments on your mind, you could pay a single, tidy bill.

The most considerable advantage to debt consolidation is that, if you have fewer creditors to pay, you’ll manage to make repayments in time. That is crucial for improving your credit score. Plus, it might simplify your finances, on the whole.

There are cases in which lenders or brokers provide you with attractive interest rates. Nonetheless, do bear in mind that if you’re paying less than the total amount of bills combined, you might have exceeded the repayment timeframe. Make sure you don’t agree to that unless it’s what you want.

So, debt consolidation can be the answer to how to erase debt.

Avoid taking on other loans

Did it ever occur to you that the reason why you’re in debt is that you depend on credit cards on a regular basis? So, if you want to learn how to erase debt, it makes sense to analyse your spending habits and see where most of your finances go. If you reckon that your weakness is utilising credit cards on a whim, you should acknowledge the downsides of such cards and try to address the problem.

We hope that you found our tips on how to erase debt handy. Bear in mind that after you have managed to become debt-free, you should be mindful so that this doesn’t change overnight. One thing is for sure: debt can be managed even with limited income, it is up to you to embrace the right tactics.Save

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Debt Management

5 Warning Signs of Out-of-Control Debts

The first sign of a financial problem is the denial that you need to ask for debt help. We are about to help you learn the warning signs of out-of-control debts so you can take back financial control.

A person is most likely to ask for help upon reaching the rock bottom when the only logical way out is bankruptcy. Before you sink deeper into debt, here are some questions you can ask yourself to know if you are in serious need of debt help.

Am I spending over my credit limit?

If you have maxed-out your credit card you can see an “over-limit” added to your next monthly statement. Though not all cards charge these fees because some card issuers waive the penalty, exceeding your credit card limit is a sign of personal financial mismanagement. It can seriously hurt your credit score because credit utilization accounts for about thirty per cent of your credit score.

If you didn’t stay well within the limit available to you, it would alert the credit score company that you are having a hard time managing your finances. You have two options here, either you increase your credit limit or you take a look at your spending behaviour. If you are barely able to pay your bill each month, choosing option number two is a good idea.

Do I have multiple credit cards?

Some say that you can never have too many credit cards because you will end up using them. The truth is, having multiple credit cards can help you boost your credit score, and they may come in handy during emergencies. But if you have the habit of forgetting to make payments or you are tempted to spend beyond what you can actually afford to pay because of the available credits, it can hurt you. One of the biggest warning signs of out-of-control debts is mounting credit card debt.

Remember that the best way to fatten your wallet and get out of debt is to manage your current accounts and your available finances responsibly.

Am I using credit to pay for basic necessities?

If you are using credit for small purchases such as food, gas, rent and utilities not for convenience but necessity, it could be a sign that you need debt help. Not paying your monthly bills on time and charging your living expenses to your credit cards may push you deeper into debt. Talking to our debt management specialists can help you rearrange your budget so you can have money for your living expenses.

Do I constantly borrow money from relatives or friends?

If you always run to your family and friends during financial emergencies and you’re still short on cash despite loans and credit cards, it may be time to learn how to budget your money. You can start with a debt management plan to know how much you really need to pay off all your debts and the amount you need to live comfortably. While you can make a list of all your debts and do the math, getting the help of debt management would be a better idea, to know about debt consolidation options and other debt management strategies.

When do I ask for debt help? The answer would be now. The moment you start asking yourself that question, it means you are having troubles managing your finances.

At the Australian Lending Centre, we can offer you the best debt counselling service in Australia and help you explore options and make decisions regarding your personal finances and debt management problems. Contact us today to learn more about debt assistance, debt agreements and debt relief services.

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Debt Management Credit Card Consolidation Home Loans

Credit Card Debt and Mortgages Being Managed Properly

This year has been a profitable one for Australian credit card debt and mortgages. According to the latest percentages, Aussies seem to be managing much better with their mortgages; their mortgage repayment appears to be going along much better than when compared with the previous year. Reports from the ABS data showed that their credit card debt had already dropped by 2.4% in January.

In the Money Survey from 2016, Mortgage Choice has discovered that at least ¼ of the respondents were faced with almost 12% month’s worth of wages in their offset account or going towards paying their mortgage. When compared to this situation, around 13% of Aussies claimed that they were facing this exact financial position somewhere around last year.

Aussies Can Now Manage their Credit Card Debt

CEO John Flavell has come to the realisation that today’s mortgage holders have become much more comfortable when it comes to dealing with their credit card debt. He also added that this isn’t surprising in the slightest since interest rates are currently standing at 60-year lows, which results in drastic mortgage repayments. This, in turn, makes it easier for homeowners to pay off their debts.

So, it seems Aussie cardholders have become used to managing their card debts, keeping it 34% lower in the month that followed Christmas. Average balances have gone from $77 to $3,114, and the conclusion was that the users are now savvier regarding the use of their credit cards. They are now paying off their debt before their deadlines and maximise their loyalty points by using their cards.

Australians have also become more imaginative when it comes to creating strategies that keep their balance down. They are now mostly opting for cards that have a 0% balance transfer, and thus they can pay off their balances without creating even more debt in return.

Ways to Manage Your Credit Card Debt

In case you were also wondering how to keep track of your credit card repayment, here are some money and credit card tips that could prove very useful.

  • Check your budget and see if you can make some extra mortgage repayments to lower your debt in interest which is going to get built up over time. Find a good strategy that would suit you, or look up for repayment calculators that will allow you to do the necessary calculations.
  • Make your next repayment a little higher than you normally do in order to lower your credit card debt. This way, you will be paying less interest.
  • Make use of features that are relevant to your home loan. Make extra payments to minimise the interest, then redraw the facility to make it convenient for you.

While managing your debts can prove to be difficult at first, with a little bit of research, you can find out ways to properly manage your mortgage and credit card debt.

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Debt Consolidation Debt Management

The Importance of Avoiding Bankruptcy

Bankruptcy is that particular legal status of a person, a company or other entity that can no longer repay his or its debts to creditors. Even though some people may affirm that bankruptcy also has a few advantages, the list of disadvantages is definitely much longer. For this reason, you should think of bankruptcy only as an ultimate last resort, after you have used any other alternatives. Learn the importance of avoiding bankruptcy below.

Main Disadvantages of Bankruptcy

No matter if it belongs to a person or business, this status triggers a wide range of disadvantages, which will have a major negative impact on someone’s reputations. Furthermore, there are also practical drawbacks that will be experienced for sure by the person in this situation. Some of them are immediate while others will come around later.

First of all, you should be aware of the fact that you will lose most of your proprieties that are valuable. You will be allowed to keep only the assets you need for a basic standard of living. Anything you own and have a high value will be sold in order to pay the money to your creditors.

Another aspect you should consider before declaring bankruptcy is that you will encounter plenty of difficulties when trying to access credit. There is a specific limit of the credit you are able to obtain, but your chances are significantly lowered by your status, as there are only a few banks which take the risk to borrow money to a bankrupt individual. You may think that soon after getting rid of the bankruptcy, this problem will end. In fact, this issue will haunt you for seven years as the bankruptcy record has to be added to your credit report and remain there throughout this period. Also, according to the policy of some banks or finance companies, your access to your credit cards can be banned.

Moreover, there is a permanent record regarding this aspect that may be accessed by anyone who pays a small fee. They will be provided with an electronic index of these records, also referred to as the National Personal Insolvency Index.

When it comes to reasons why you should be avoiding bankruptcy, another important aspect is that this status will lower your chances of getting employed. In fact, even if you would convince an employer, there are particular industries with strict rules regarding this aspect, and they need to obey them and not hire you.

Less Extreme Alternatives to Bankruptcy

A convenient alternative is a debt agreement. This option is available for those who have not filed a bankruptcy form and consists of a debt settlement arrangement between you and your creditors. This will allow you to settle affordable debts, for example by freezing the interest rate.

Another less extreme alternative is a consolidation loan, which will help you manage your current debts much easier.

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Bad Credit Loans Debt Management Financial Planning News

How to Adhere to your New Year Resolution to Save Money

Everybody makes New Year resolutions, but most of us fail to stick to them. With every start of a new year, we want to change our lives for the best, but because of lack of proper planning and genuine determination, we only follow the resolutions for a couple of weeks, and afterwards, we completely forget about them. But this year, it doesn’t have to be the same, does it?

You see, the trick to sticking to your New Year resolution is to come up with effective ways to follow them, even after the January bustle ends. Financial goals are, probably, the most popular ones. Thus, keep yourself motivated throughout the year by taking into account the following tips.

Sticking to your New Year Resolution

Set realistic goals

The first thing about resolutions is that we tend to set outrageous, slightly unrealistic objectives, which discourage us from even thinking about them. Thus, the key to accomplishing your goals is making sure they’re achievable and realistic. Set specific, measurable money targets.

Make a budget

Establishing a budget is the next step you need to take so that you manage to stick to your New Year Resolution of saving money. Budgeting will allow you to know how much you’re spending, and whether you’re spending more than you’re bringing in. When designing your budget, make sure to include household necessities such as the monthly rent, bills, commute, food and so on, as well as leisure activities such as shopping, eating out, travelling costs, and others.

Next, establish how much money you earn monthly. If you have fixed wages, it will be easier for you to settle that, if not, just set an approximate sum based on your salary from the last couple of months.

Keep track of your spending

As you track down your spending, you will realize where your money goes, something that perhaps missed your attention in the past. Keeping track of your spending will only show you that saving up small amounts of money can make a world of difference in the long run. Ideally, we recommend you consider to track your spending for at least one month, to observe your spending habits, and where a great deal of your money goes to. You will be surprised.

Replace habits, but don’t aim at eliminating them completely

As you realize that your habits make you spend a lot of money, you need to comprehend that you ought to replace them, as eliminating them won’t suffice. For instance, if a large amount of cash goes to eating lunch out, you need to start cooking your own meals. Buy groceries and plan your meals ahead, so that you don’t feel tempted to eat out. Just educate yourself and you’ll be successful in sticking to your New Year resolution to save money.