Most people deal with money on a daily basis, whether it is to buy food, to pay for accommodation and transport, to invest or at work. Surely if people deal with money on a daily basis, people should know how to manage their money?! Money is a sensitive topic most people avoid talking about it, therefore there is an assumption that most households are doing reasonably well financially. There is also a general perception that all people who earn good salaries are doing well financially. Then there is the perception that people who drive fancy cars, wear branded clothing and reside in upmarket suburbs are doing well financially. The statistics are however telling a completely different story, proving the majority of these assumptions wrong.
Are you financially fit? How often do you sit back and critically look at your finances? Or are you so busy making a living and building a career that you never find time to assess your personal financial wellbeing. Maybe it is time to reflect on your financial goals and wellbeing. To go back to the basics and assess where you are, where you want to be and how to get there if you are not there yet.
Answer these questions to help you assess if you are financially fit:
- Do you have clearly defined financial goals for the next year, 2-5 years and 5-10 years?
- Do you feel stressed about your finances or do you feel comfortable?
- Do you know how much you earn from all your income sources and how much you spend on average?
- Do you know what is your net worth?
- Do you have an action plan to create and build financial wellbeing and wealth?
- If you have debt, do you have a plan in place to become debt-free as soon as possible?
- Do you have life, disability, dread disease, income protection and funeral cover in place and do you review and update your policies on a regular basis?
- Do you have an emergency fund that is sufficient to cover your living costs for a few months or to pay for big medical expenses should something unforeseen happen?
- Do you feel comfortable that you will be able to survive for a time period if you have to lose your job or business tomorrow?
- Have you created multiple income sources to avoid having to rely on one income source only?
- Do you have a plan for your income and wealth portfolio to beat living costs that increase significantly, a struggling economy and financial markets not always performing well?
- Do you make sufficient provision for retirement or do you feel stressed that you might have to retire without having sufficient retirement savings?
- Do you have an up-to-date and signed will?
- Do you have a life file containing all your important information and do your loved ones know where to find it should something happen to you?
Make time to assess your financial position and continuously work on your financial fitness.
Do you want to improve your financial fitness? Reading the book ‘Financially Fit and Wealthy’, will certainly help you – read more about the book.
This is an edited version of the original article that was published in the Accountancy SA magazine.
Written by: Ronel Jooste
CA(SA), Financial Consultant, Speaker and Author of the award-winning book Financially Fit and Wealthy