What are the top 10 personal finance steps I need to take in 2011?
Where will I get the greatest return for my effort? Re-mortgage, investments, savings account, ISAs?
I would start by reviewing your monthly budget as you will often identify things that you dont even need to spend on which can result in a 100% saving. eg that gym membership you dont use, the breakdown service when you already get it as an add-on with your current account.
in terms of the other points you raise, the remortgage can have potentially the biggest improvement if you are on a standard variable rate with your lender or even if you are tied to a high fixed rate, with 25% equity you could get massive savings and even more with more equity but of course this will mean a little effort from you as a good IFA will be able to do most of the work with little or nil outlay from you.
the same IFA will be able to help you review your investments, pension planning and protection arrangements. Protection is important to bolster your plans, the last thing you want is that your aspirations are knocked because of ill-health or other matters beyond your control.
These are all things i review with my clients regularly, it doesnt always mean that we take action as i am mindful of my client's budget and their short term objectives but the big obstacle for many people is to realise that they need to take stock - at least you are already at that stage now!
you might find that your first "proper" review takes a lot of effort especially with a new IFA but the benefit is that all the future ones will be much easier as you will have done all thr groundwork now and will be just building on your plans and tweaking them as necessary. | 01.05.11 @ 10:09