a SUPPLEMENT to Learn About Money Personal Budgets YOUR MONEY

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1 a SUPPLEMENT to Learn About Money Personal Budgets YOUR MONEY

2 PB A Supplement to Learn About Money Personal Budgets Managing your money Section 1: How to plan your money 1.1 What are the benefits of preparing a budget? 1.2 How would you define a budget? 1.3 Your own budgeting 1.4 What happens if your budget doesn t balance? Section 2: Positive Debt Management 2.1 What is debt? Types of debt. 2.2 Consequences of not repaying; 2.3 Where to go for advice? Section 3: Keeping your money/cards safe Published by: Life Academy Keeping money safe at home 3.2 Out & about 9 Chesham Road Guildford Surrey GU1 3LS Tel: Fax: Registered Charity No Life Academy incorporated as the Pre-Retirement Association. Registered in England number Registered office as above. VAT registration number

3 SECTION 1 HOW TO PLAN How to plan your money This is about the whole of your budget and includes your bills which are not covered by the Personal Budget from the Council Purpose To understand the concept of money planning in the short-term and medium-term. To understand how you can improve your financial position through changes in your income and expenditure. In this section you will consider: 1.1 What are the benefits of preparing a budget? 1.2 How would you define a budget? 1.3 Your own budgeting 1.4 What happens if your general budget doesn t balance? This section will enable you to think about the ways to manage your money, including general budgeting. Money needs to be managed: a) on a day to day basis (short-term management) and b) in the medium and longer term. An example of short-term money management is paying household bills, etc. For both short and long-term financial planning, general budgeting is at the core, and medium and long term planning is built on this exercise 3

4 HOW TO PLAN 1.1 What are the benefits of preparing a general budget? Benefits include: a) knowing your financial situation on a day to day basis b) being able to make informed financial decisions c) being aware of extra costs that may arise, such as care costs d) being aware of financial problems in good time e) making the best use of your money g) having rainy day money, an emergency fund 1.2 How would you define a general budget? What is a general budget? A budget is an estimate of income and expenditure over a given time period. It is a way of short-term financial planning because it indicates whether or not income and expenditure balance. When income is less than expenditure, and no action is taken, then a debt will arise. Should income be greater than expenditure, the excess can either be spent to buy a needed item or saved. Budgeting is at the core of any financial planning since it enables financial decisions to be made based on information about current financial situation. 1.3 Your Own Budgeting What ways of budgeting are there? There are various ways to budget some easy and others more difficult and time consuming. To do it properly you really need to complete the budget calculator. This requires you to gather together all the information required. However it is well worth the effort since it provides a clear and accurate picture of your financial situation. Fill in as much as you can. You may need to make a note over a period of a week or a month of how much you spend on such items as newspapers, going out, etc. The results can sometimes be surprising. 4

5 HOW TO PLAN Before you start using the calculator you will need to collect together the following items: = Mortgage payment / rent book = Council tax bill = Gas & electricity bills = Insurance bill = Telephone / Internet / Sky / cable bills = Credit card statement & repayments = Water bill = Loan statement & repayments = Bank Interest/ Investment earnings = Food / grocery bill = Your pay slip, if you are working ACTIVITY - Budget Checklist Decide whether you will calculate this budget either by a week or by a month Complete the table (excluding your personal budget) INCOME / Money In State Pension Basic Other state benefits (i) Pension Credit (ii) Attendance Allowance (iii) Other Company Pension (Past/Present Employers) Private Pension Disability Pension War Pension Interest (Bank/Post Office, etc) Investment Income (per week) OR (per 4 week period) Spare Time Earnings Other Income Other Income (Not Listed) Total Income 5

6 HOW TO PLAN Include your contributions to your personal budget OUTGOINGS / Expenditure / Money Out (per week) OR (per 4 week period) Mortgage Repayments/Rent Interest on Loans /Hire Purchase Repayments My contribution to my care (my personal budget) Credit Card Repayments Social or Leisure Club Fees Other Subscriptions Rental of Equipment (eg TV) Insurance Policy Premiums: (i) Life/Endowment (ii) Household (iii) Car (iv) Private Medical Insurance + Local Taxation (Property/Local Tax) + Water Rates Gas Electricity Other Fuel or Heating Food, Grocery and Household Items Newspapers and Magazines Travel (Bus/Train/Car): (i) Private (ii) Business Entertainment (eg Cinema, Theatre etc) Holidays/Outings/Hobbies/Leisure Family Visiting Clothing Home/Garden/Decorating Savings (eg Building Society, etc) Presents (Birthday/Christmas/Anniversary) Toiletries/Personal Needs/Hair Cutting/etc Postage/Telephone Smoking /Alcohol Other + Rebates available in certain circumstances Expenditure Write in the totals and work out the balance Total Income Less Total Outgoings/Expenditure Equals Balance 6

7 HOW TO PLAN There are simpler ways of budgeting although they do not give the complete picture. Ways to budget simply include: 1 Collecting together your income and expenditure; the best way is to use the budget calculator at least from time to time. 2 Adjusting this to allow for known annual events e.g. a holiday, annual insurance, etc. 3 Checking your bank statement at the end of each month 4 Writing down everything you spend over a set period. 1.4 What happens if your general budget doesn t balance? One remedy is to either increase your income or reduce your expenditure. Some items of expenditure are easier to reduce than others. Look again at the budget calculator. Which items of expenditure or outgoings can you most easily reduce? The items on the list such as eating out, presents etc. can most easily be reduced. It is important to maintain credit card repayments and paying other bills. On your list of expenditure: = Which are needs? and Which are wants? = You may be able to manage without the wants. = Managing without the items such as outings, newspapers and magazines, and replacing non-worn out items is helpful if the budget doesn t balance. = Surprisingly large amounts of money spent are not strictly necessary, because it is not spent on what is absolutely essential. 7

8 HOW TO PLAN Activity ways to Reduce Expenditure How would you reduce expenditure if you needed to? Write down the things you would stop spending money on and work out the money you could save. Work this out either for a week or a 4 week period. Things I would stop spending money on: How much I could save TOTAL 8

9 SECTION 2 POSITIVE DEBT MANAGEMNT Advice and information on positive debt management Purpose To understand what debt is and how people get into debt. In some situations where your debt has grown and you do not feel in control that this section may help. In this section you will cover: 2.1 What is debt? 2.2 Consequences of not repaying 2.3 Resources - where to go for advice 9

10 POSITIVE DEBT MANAGEMNT 2.1 What is debt? Debt is money that you owe to other people or organisations. These people or organisations are called your Creditors. Your Creditors have legal rights which allow them to take legal action against you for recovery of the debt if you fail to meet your repayment agreement. The problem arises when people cannot repay the debt or interest on that debt because: = They have too big a debt and not enough money to pay it off = Circumstances have changed and they can no longer afford it = They cannot manage everyday spending and costs Credit unions Credit unions are financial co-operatives owned and controlled by their members. They offer savings and low interest loans, they are local, ethical and know their members needs. Each credit union has a "common bond" which determines who can join it. The common bond may be people: living or working in the same area, working for the same employer; or who belong to the same association, such as a faith group or trade union. Life events These are events which either happen to us, or we plan them they all affect our money situation, usually for the worst, e.g. relationship breakdown, long term sickness or disability, having or adopting a grandchild, a family bereavement, retirement, unemployment or sudden redundancy. If these events can be anticipated or that they might happen, it is worth re-looking at the budget. It would be helpful if we could all find a way of saving some money when times are better financially, but this isn t always possible. Think carefully about recent lifestyle patterns, then start afresh with your money planning for this situation. 10

11 POSITIVE DEBT MANAGEMNT Consequences of not repaying Type of Debt Possible action against you 2.2 Rent arrears Mortgage arrears Secured loans Council Tax Gas or electricity Eviction from your home Repossession of your home (if the loan is secured against your home) / eviction Repossession of your home (if the loan is secured against your home) / eviction Distraint (money taken from benefits or income) / imprisonment Supply cut off Hire purchase Repossession of goods Credit cards Penalty Charges / County Court Judgement / Bailiffs (your goods being taken to pay for the debt). 2.3 Where to go for advice? Resources concerning debt The Money Advice Service - providing free unbiased money advice. UK Information Commissioner s Office Free booklet Credit explained phone to receive a copy, or download it from their website An independent website on all aspects of money Local Exchange Trading Systems a way of offering and receiving services without using cash Credit Action a national money education charity 11

12 POSITIVE DEBT MANAGEMNT National Debt Line national Debtline is now part of the Money Advice Trust. The service is free, confidential and independent. The service has existed since Phone for advice There is a series of 19 letters in which you can complete your personal details, then download and print them off to post to your creditors The Consumer Credit Counselling Service is a registered charity whose purpose is to assist people who are in financial difficulty by providing free, independent, impartial and realistic advice. Freephone helpline is open from 8am to 8pm, Monday to Friday: Citizens Advice Bureau Citizens Advice bureaux provide free, confidential and independent advice from nearly 3,400 locations including in bureaux, GP surgeries, hospitals, colleges, prisons and courts. or local number in Telephone Directory. The Office of Fair Trading - guidance about the way creditors and debt collectors should behave. Consumer Direct advice service on Credit Unions ABCUL Holyoake House, Hanover Street, Manchester M60 OAS Phone: Fax: UKCU Credit Union House, 15 Greenfield Street, Haslingden, Rossendale, Lancashire bb4 5TG Phone/Fax: (01706)

13 SECTION 3 KEEPING AND CARDS SAFE Keeping your money and cards safe Purpose To highlight safety and security around money In this section you will cover: 3.1 Keeping money safe at home 3.2 Out & about Keep your items with you at all times 13

14 KEEPING AND CARDS SAFE 3.1 Keeping money safe at home = Keep money away from windows. If there is a safe in your home, keep money in the safe. = Only keep smaller amounts of money at home. = Keep larger amounts of money (over 60) in the bank or post office. = If someone telephones or s you, even if they say they are from your bank, keep your account number, pin and details confidential and to yourself. Hang up or Say thank you, ask for their name and branch and then.ring your bank using the number on your card or bank statement if you are concerned and tell them about the call. 3.2 Out & about - keep your items with you at all times = Keep your money in a wallet or purse. = Keep your wallet or purse in a safe part of your bag or inside pocket (zipped or buttoned is best). = Leave back pocket empty concerning your money or purse. = Take only the money you will need. = Wear your bag across the front of your body or under your coat and keep it closed securely. = Only keep smaller amounts of money with you. = If you use a wheelchair, think about where would be the safest place to carry your bag. 14

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