Lifestyle19 March 2019

Tidy up your finances like Marie Kondo

Letting go can be liberating. Industry super fund-owned bank ME looks at four ways to declutter your finances, inspired by tidying guru Marie Kondo.

Decluttering expert Marie Kondo is riding a wave of popularity with her Netflix series based on the KonMari1 method of tidying up homes.

It’s no surprise Kondo’s ideas are a hit. Psychologists have long-known that mess causes stress2, so why stop at our homes? Inspired by Kondo, ME looks at four ways to declutter your finances and regain control of your money.

1. Get the easy stuff out of the way first

Kondo recommends kick-starting the declutter process by clearing out items that hold the least emotional attachment. When it comes to money matters, that’s likely to be your transaction account.

Having multiple transaction accounts can mean paying unnecessary account fees. It can also make it hard to track debits and credits into and out of various accounts. Who needs that confusion?

Moving to a single transaction account can help you stay on top of your money and save on fees.

2. Get a clear understanding of what you have

Kondo asks her clients to gather all their clothing and pile it in one spot for a clear view of everything they own.

Try the same step with your finances. Line up all of your accounts and take a close look at what’s involved with each of them.

It can be quite an eye-opener. You could find, for instance, that your home loan or savings account no longer offers a competitive interest rate. If that sounds like you, take the opportunity to look for a product that’s better suited to your needs.

3. Don’t spread the clutter

Kondo has found that people often hide items in different rooms, spreading the clutter rather than addressing the problem.

It can be a similar story with credit cards. Constantly shifting balances from one maxed out card to a new card doesn’t mean taking control of the debt.  It merely delays the responsibility of paying off the balance.

If juggling multiple cards sounds familiar, consider consolidating to just one card.

4. Have a system in place to stay on top of the mess

When the cameras stop rolling on Kondo’s clients, we’re left wondering whether they’ll keep their homes clutter-free.

Don’t leave your newly tidied finances to chance. Staying on top of money matters calls for a system.

Consider putting your bills on autopilot by setting up direct payments out of your transaction account. Set calendar dates to regularly review your key accounts – it can prevent old bad habits from creeping in.

By taking a few tips from Marie Kondo, it’s possible to see your finances through fresh eyes.

This article has been provided by ME Bank and republished by Tasplan with permission of ME Bank. Tasplan takes no responsibility for any content errors or omissions in this article.

This information is about products and services available to you as a member of Tasplan Super. Tasplan Super and ME are not agents or representatives of one another. Tasplan Super does not accept responsibility or liability for any loss or damage caused by the products or services provided by ME. Tasplan Super does not receive any commissions as a result of members using ME products and services.

At Tasplan, general advice is free of charge for members. General advice doesn’t take into account your individual financial situation. If you need personal advice about your individual situation, you can meet with a Quadrant First financial planner. Quadrant First Pty Ltd operates on a fee for service basis and our planners will let you know the advice cost upfront. After your initial appointment, you're under no obligation to continue any further.

Quadrant First Pty Ltd (ABN 78 102 167 877, AFS Licence No. 284443) is a wholly owned subsidiary of Tasplan Pty Ltd and operates as a separate legal entity.

The trustee of Tasplan Super (ABN 14 602 032 302) is Tasplan Pty Ltd (ABN 13 009 563 062). AFSL 235391.

1 Accessed 27 February 2019.

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