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Can extreme budgeting work for you?

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15 March 2017

make like a leaf and let go

The emerging trend of extreme budgeting is being used by some as a way to achieve early retirement, but will it suit you?

The phenomenon of extreme budgeting is gaining a lot of credence, as many households are keen to rein in their exposure to debt. As the name suggests, extreme budgeting requires a quantum leap in the approach to the household budget, involving a resistance to the pressures of consumerism and an emphasis on self-sufficiency and a more frugal lifestyle. While the changes required by extreme budgeting are quite dramatic, on the flip side the potential benefits are compelling.  

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Lighten your Load in Autumn

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03 March 2017

make like a leaf and let go

Autumn is here with its palette of orange, browns and reds. To many, it’s a welcome relief following a record hot Summer. While it will likely be some weeks before we feel the cool change, a new season brings with it opportunity to regroup and assess your goals and life.

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Bank Anywhere, Anytime with the new Select Encompass App

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24 February 2017

Bank Anytime, Anywhere with the new Select Encompass App

Life is much more fast-paced than it once was. Many of us enjoy breakfast out at cafes (or on the run), dinner at restaurants and in between we are at work or out and about. We are spending more time multi-tasking and on the go than ever before and we expect to be able to complete almost any task via our personal devices such as Ipads or mobile phones.

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Tips for Financial Success

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17 February 2017

create a future you can bank on

It can be a challenge to rewire your brain to change the way you view money, but with a few big shifts you can completely change your financial future to be one that's bright.

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Make the Call to Use your Smartphone Less

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10 February 2017

Most of us don’t leave home without our phone, and some of us can be hard pressed not to look at our phone several times an hour (some people have to systematically check every 10-15 minutes) to check updates, emails and social media.  Being so attached to our phones can be incredibly helpful at times, when we need to get hold of someone quickly, to look up a local restaurant or make a quick booking, kill time when we are travelling or waiting in line, or even go shopping.

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The Baby Budget - how to prepare financially for a new arrival

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27 January 2017

do you have a baby budget?

Do you have dreams of being a parent one day? Perhaps it is a goal for your future, once you meet Mr or Mrs right, or once you’ve done your big overseas trip, or you’ve ticked a few career goals. Thing is, it’s unlikely you will ever feel completely ready for a baby. You won’t know what’s instore until you’ve been there yourself. No matter how many siblings, nieces, nephews or kid’s friends you’ve been exposed to, nothing can prepare you for the real thing.

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Make 2017 Your Year

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13 January 2017

make 2017 your year

For many the New Year is a chance to start afresh and set new intentions for the year ahead. We declare ambitious goals of losing two dress sizes, going to the gym every day, completely giving up sugar or caffeine, and promising ourselves we will never drink again.  However instead of going all dramatic (and perhaps aiming for the impossible), we should set ourselves smaller, easily achievable goals. Or try having a theme or word for the year that acts as a guide for your year, (such as 'simplify', 'new home', 'save', 'healthy' or 'happy').  These words carry with them an ideal way of being and can work as motivation without being too overwhelming. 

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How to have a Stress-free Christmas

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23 December 2016

Christmas is usually something most of us look forward to, but it can be a time of stress and overwhelm for many. The pressure of making the day perfect is a big one for those hosting a lunch or dinner on Christmas day. Add to this potential financial strain, extra houseguests, family dynamics, hot weather and perhaps a tad too much alcohol and you have a potential boiling pot of stress and friction. 

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Keep your Body and Books Balanced this Party Season

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16 December 2016

keep the body and the books balanced this party season

When the weather warms up so does our social life. The days are longer and the lure of the outdoors beckons us with its sunshine and mild evenings. From now until the end of the year it is party central, with work Christmas parties, gatherings with buddies and family reunions. The energy of summer is one of expansion and connecting with others. Picnics in the park, days out at the beach, lots of BBQs and parties into the night – you will be flitting from one gathering to the next like a moth from lantern to light globe.

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Be Cyber Savvy this Christmas

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30 November 2016

be cyber savvy this Christmas

Like a speeding bullet train we are heading for a collision course with Christmas and the end of 2016. Whether we like it or not that’s our destination, so strap on your tinsel belts and hold on to your spending budgets tightly, the impact is hard to predict, but may result in damaging blows to your savings and a stack of refugee gifts awaiting new homes on boxing day.

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Home is Where the Heart Is - Making a Rental Your Own

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20 November 2016

home sweet home, even if you're renting

It's still the Australian dream, but for many of us living in places like Sydney, owning our own home is still a little out of reach for now.  Some of us might own property yet choose to rent it out, while renting another place for themselves.  Others are on the seemingly perpetual saving wheel, squirreling away as much as they can week by week to build up an acceptable deposit.  Even with interest rates at an all time low, there are many middle income, double income couples, professionals (not to mention the lower income and students) living in the big smoke still having to rent because buying, for now anyway, just isn't an option.  

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Simplify Your Christmas

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16 November 2016

simplify your Christmas this year

Christmas is nearly here!  The hunt for gifts has begun and you may be already decking out your house with sparkles and lights.  Perhaps you are already planning the food, the colour themes, and visualised how the gifts will be wrapped this year (or perhaps you're like me and these things are all last minute spur of the moment, what-ever-you-have-at-hand decisions). The shops have already begun playing carols and window displays are looking very festive indeed. We are encouraged by magazines, movies and malls to spend up big at Christmas on decorations, gifts, food and accessories. But how much do you really have to spend to make it a memorable day spent with loved ones?

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