2 Simple Steps to Increase Your Wealth
Well, this Friday is the end of the financial year. My question to you is, was it a good one financially, or not so good? Are you in a stronger financial position than you were in 12 months ago? And if not, what steps are you taking to increase your wealth, so that in 12 months time the answer will be “yes”?
Whether you’re a business owner, an employee, or a retiree, it is not rocket science to know, that in order to become more financially secure, our income needs to be greater than our expenses. Essentially, this is the crux to all paths to financial success. The degree to which the income is greater than the expenses is the only variable that can accelerate or slow down the path to financial security.
So where to start? Like all good plans, the best place to start is to know where you are “now”. Then you can make some decisions on “where” you want to go and what changes need to happen to get you from ‘now’ to ‘where’.
Step 1 is to prepare a financial balance sheet. Whether you are looking to improve your business or your personal affairs, list down all of the things that you own that are of value and also, all of the debts that you have. This should give you a clear picture of your assets and liabilities, a starting point to compare back to in the future.
Then, looking at that list, ask yourself, do you have assets that are not producing income? Could that money be reallocated into more profitable ventures/investments? Are there any assets that you don’t need that could be sold and the funds used to pay off some debts?
Looking at your debts, ask, what interest rates are you paying on your debts? Could you get those interest rates lowered and are you paying off the most expensive debts first?
Step 2 is to review and breakdown your income and expenses for the last 12 months. If we look at your income for the last 12 months, where did it come from and how much will you receive from the same sources in the next 12 months?
Now look at your expenses. Most people, if they are honest and detailed about their analysis, are very surprised with how much they spend and where it went. To be truthful, most people, when looking at their personal spending, usually have a gaping hole of money spent that they really don’t know where it went. Then, thinking forward, do you envisage that you will have to spend the same amount in the next 12 months, or, are there opportunities to reduce that spending, or obligations to increase that spending? Perform this process on every item of expenditure.
With a detailed analysis of income and expenditure and a truthful projection of the next 12 months, we can determine where we are headed financially if we maintain the status quo. This may be a surplus or it could be a deficiency. Having come to that conclusion, we can then make a decision as to our level of comfort with that result and the impact that that result will have on our financial future. From that position, we can then make decisions on what changes, if any, we plan to make in the next 12 months to achieve a more desirable result.
This might include increasing our income. If you are an individual, you may take on a 2nd job, work additional overtime, or take on some training so that you can obtain a more valuable, higher paying position. If you are a business, you may look at ways to increase your sales, increase the number of customers and/or improve the gross profit on your sales. I’ve spoken about this in previous articles.
If you are looking to reduce your expenses, then you may choose to eliminate/reduce luxury items and/or search for discounts and reductions. Most importantly, you should implement an accurate method of monitoring expenses so that you know that you are on track.
Obviously, we are only scratching the surface here. At Potts and Schnelle, in our role as business and tax advisers, we help our business clients review these matters regularly. Also, in our role as financial planners, we help individuals do the same. This is what we are all about, not just tax and super.
If you would like to discuss your financial position with us and use our expertise to increase your wealth, call our office on 02 60332233 to make an appointment, so that in 12 months time, you can say “Yes! Our financial position has improved!”