Posts Tagged :

personal finances

Young boy posing with money drifting around him
Are your kids learning about finances the hard way or the easy way?

I remember it well. The little green booklet that I’d carry into the local branch of the savings bank, with my grandparents’ Christmas money or some such, all ready to save up for some far flung future when I’d be able to buy Something Important. The wee booklet was received by the teller like a benediction, and after passing it through a machine that typed on it (TYPED!) it was returned to me fresh, newly updated, bearing the magic words…

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Making the most of your OneSmart card (and also, what the hell is a OneSmart card?)

Here at the last bus stop on the planet we love our travelling. But you can’t leave without a good pocketful of money and there’s no avoiding it: you’ll have to change your Kiwi dollars into some other currency. That’s where the irritation starts. They love to clip the ticket, those money changers. And every time they do, you brace yourself. How much are they going to sock me for this? Who’s going to take a big fat cut out…

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Retired couple sitting on chair looking out at Lake Wanaka
Five simple facts about retirement for Kiwis (and why you need to get your ducks in a row)

We haven’t paid into the Cullen Fund for seven years Heard of the Cullen Fund? It’s named after Michael Cullen, who was Minister of Finance in 2001 when the fund was set up. It’s also called the NZ Super Fund, and it’s designed to partially fund our retirement pension. The fund is currently $33.1b. In July 2009 the National government stopped contributing to it, and if that hadn’t happened, it would have been $52.6b in January this year (according to…

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Woman reaching her goal
We road-test a financial personal trainer. It’s just like the gym, only with less active wear

Question time: do you flash, or do you stash, your cash? Or do you mix it up and go both ways? Although we’re trying to save, we realised recently the dollars aren’t mounting up like we’d like them to be. So, in what might appear to be a counterintuitive move, we decided to pay to get financially fit. Yes, that’s right. We got a financial personal trainer from enableMe. It’s just like the gym! But with less active wear. Show…

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People standing on stacks of money
What you need to know about: Personal loans vs credit cards

A personal loan is about as straightforward as it gets when it comes to borrowing money. It can help you pay for something special like a car, holiday or home renovations, or to consolidate debt. With a personal loan, you borrow a specific amount and you make regular payments until it’s paid, usually one to five years. And for a long time personal loans have been in the shadow of credit cards. That’s because credit cards are very good business…

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Retired couple playing video games
Two easy ways to fast-track your retirement

Let’s have a quick talk about the meaning of life. Well, maybe not the whole nine yards, but do you have moments in your cubicle when you wonder if the way you’ve got your life planned is the smartest way to go at it. What are your plans for financial security, and where do you hope to be when you retire? And how soon do you want it to happen? Here’s an unnerving thought: is it possible your plans for…

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Young girl standing in front of blackboard with dollar signs
BNZ chief economist Tony Alexander reckons we need to harden up. We check out his spending tips to see if they stack up

BNZ chief economist Tony Alexander has always been a bit of a loose cannon on the bank’s deck (and we say that with love and admiration). He’s known for being able to create a media-friendly headline and say what he really thinks. No surprises then, when he provoked a small storm last week after shooting from the hip in his weekly newsletter, telling young people to harden up and cut their expenses if they wanted to get on the property…

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Bill past due
How to deal with debt collectors – including your rights and privacy

There’s nothing like owning a ferocious guard dog for dealing with debt collectors. Chomp, chomp, chomp. There goes the arm of that dastardly fella. No, no, no. Stop there. Kiwis consider debt collectors to be a lower form of life. Regardless, setting the dog on them isn’t going to solve your problems – it’ll just make them worse. Debt collectors don’t even taste that nice. We know it’s common behaviour to stick your head in the sand when you can’t…

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Do you know your partners credit score
Do you know your partner’s credit score? Our research shows that 18% of people have money or finances their partner doesn’t know about

Our research shows that 18% of people have money or finances their partner doesn’t know about. I know two couples who are total opposites when it comes to how they manage their joint finances. One couple – first names James and Jenny, surnames omitted to protect the innocent – pools their finances in full and takes a generous approach, with one exception: they each have a ‘fun account’, into which an equal sum of money is fed each month, and the…

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Young, single, and on a budget? Skip the mistakes that others make

You’re young, single and on a budget. It’s hard being a ‘yadult’ sometimes. But life’s a lot more fun if you’re not stressing about the power being cut off. Take some tips from others’ mistakes and skip the ‘shoulda known better’ stage of your financial future. Here’s how: Have a spending plan. That’s a budget, but if you think of it as spending plan it doesn’t feel like a torture device. The idea is that you get a pen and…

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