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No matter what your financial situation, being good with money is a core life skill. Whether you have a little or a lot, there are some basic practices that can help you manage your money.
Banks offer all sorts of financial products and services to customers. When you are shopping around for a banking account, sometimes the range and complexity of choices can be overwhelming. Maybe you've just got your first full-time job and need an account to help you manage your pay. Maybe you’re juggling work and study and need to keep a close eye on your money if you’re saving for that car. Whatever your circumstances, it’s time to get smart about your banking.
Making the right choice about your bank account is the first step towards smart banking. The information below can assist you choose a bank account which best suits your needs and to help you cut down on fees in order to get the most from your account.
Fact Sheet: Bank Account Basics
Borrowed money or credit is used by most bank customers because it’s convenient and it helps us achieve our financial goals, when it’s carefully managed. The information below is for anyone who is thinking about borrowing money, or already has some form of credit, such as a personal loan, an overdraft or a credit card. It provides the basic facts about credit – from the potential benefits and pitfalls of different types of credit, including the cost of credit, through to helpful tips on keeping credit under control and what to do when credit becomes a problem.
Fact sheet: Credit Basics
Banks charge fees for services provided to customers and this is predominantly based on a user pays principle. That is, customers pay a reasonable fee for the cost of the services they use.
Although it might not be obvious, a bank incurs a cost for every service a customer uses, even if it is only checking an account balance. Most customers agree it is fair to pay fees, but only if they receive value in return. In return for service fees, customers know their money is safe and secure and that their bank will provide and maintain facilities which give them convenient access to that money, 24 hours a day, seven days week, from almost anywhere in the world.
Budgeting is the process of balancing income and expenses so that you can manage your finances for a defined period. Doing a budget is simply a matter of noting down all of your income and all of your expenses, then subtracting your expenses from your income to see what you have left. This is your ‘disposable income’.
Budgets are often thought of as something necessary for individuals or families on modest incomes or for those paying off debt. However, everyone can benefit from a budget, even the most affluent. A budget can show if you are living beyond your means or spending more than you are earning. You can use a budget as a tool to help you save for a financial goal like a car or an overseas trip.
Fact sheet: Budgeting Made Easy