Failing to budget a major problem for consumers, survey reveals

by Julia Corderoy17 Feb 2016
Failing to budget is the number one hindrance stopping Australians achieving a comfortable financial future, according to a recent survey.

The results of a survey of Yellow Brick Road’s (YBR) network of wealth managers showed that over a third of the company’s advisers believed failing to budget was the biggest issue to blame in stopping their customers meet their financial goals. 

This was followed by apathy towards financial position and believing nothing can improve it (17%), the fear of seeing the reality of their financial situation (17%), laziness (7%), credit card debts (7%) and buying new cars (3%).

YBR spokesperson Lyndsey Douglas said these results reveal budgeting was an area in which Australians lacked discipline.

“Budgeting doesn’t have to be difficult. It’s about becoming aware of how you’re spending your money each week and setting some goals. Knowledge is power and in this instance, it is a major tool to getting your piggy bank growing,” she said.

“Once you have awareness of your spending habits, you can put an action plan in place to be sure you’re saving appropriately, not over spending and reaching your targets.”

Douglas also said the survey proved it is time for Australians to get serious about their finances.

“While finances may not be the topic of choice at dinner parties, setting some time aside and getting serious about your financial situation is important.

“Some people avoid talking about money or think nothing can be done about their financial situation. In fact 17% of our adviser network said Australians are often afraid of the reality of their financial situation and don’t ask for the help they need.

“Burying your head in the sand won’t help you achieve your goals. The earlier you ask for help the more that can be done to help you growth wealth.”

Tim Brown, the chief executive of Vow Financial told Australian Broker earlier this year that debt management should be a major focus for brokers in 2016.

“I think [debt management] will be important for a number of reasons this year. The property market is starting to slow, the equities market is in a nightmare, and I think for our clients it is about building cash. 

“I think cash will become king as the market starts to slow and I think people who are in better position with a strong capital flow and strong equities positions – in other  words, paying some debt down – will be in a stronger position to select an opportunity moving forward.”